Argentine Indigenous leader Milagro Sala was barefoot as police officers removed her from house arrest and took her to to prison last week. Sala’s lawyer says it was as an abduction, as it was done without the notification or knowledge of Sala’s legal representatives, according to reporting by TeleSurTV:
Sala was taken to the Alto Comedero prison in Jujuy, from the residence where she had been under house arrest, according to her Tupac Amaru social organization. Her defense attorney, Elizabeth Gomez, described the move as an “abduction” by the police against the lawmaker and activist.Gomez said Judge Pullen Llermanos “has no jurisdiction over this house arrest to do what he did, that’s why we say it’s an abduction, because it is an absolute illegality, reminding us of the darkest times of our country.”Sala said it was “foul play” by the provincial government and a retaliation for her demands after the disappearance of the young activist Santiago Maldonado.
Asi ingresó el CEOP a detener a Milagro Sala pic.twitter.com/nPLnX24h3B
— Prensa Tupac (@PrensaTupac) October 14, 2017
Last year, the United Nations demanded that the government release Sala, while the U.N. Working Group on Arbitrary Detention described her incarceration as “annihilation by the state.”
As head of Argentina’s Tupac Amaru neighborhood association, part of the Association of State Workers of Jujuy, Sala won a seat in 2015 in the regional parliament of the Mercosur trade group of South American nations, Parlasur. She was arrested on January 16, 2016, after being accused of “inciting criminal acts” linked to a protest she led against authorities.
In May, RT.com reported that thousands of torch-bearing protesters marched through the streets of Buenos Aires demanding the immediate release of Sala who was jailed in. Members of the Tupac Amaru, the Argentine Workers’ Central Union (CTA), the Association of State Workers (ATE) and other unions as well as human rights organizations joined the demonstration. Activists arrived at the Sheraton Hotel, where a series of Inter-American Commission of Human Rights (IACHR) hearings were being held.