The families of the kidnapped and slain Ecuadorean journalists, Javier Ortega and Paul Rivas, and their driver, Efrain Segarra, have arrived in Ecuador Wednesday. They were flown in a military airplane from Cali, Colombia to Mariscal Sucre Airport in Quito at 9:50 a.m. local time.
Their coffins were draped in the Ecuadorean flag and family members, friends and colleagues departed from the air terminal with their deceased loved ones at roughly 11:00 a.m. They proceeded in a caravan of vehicles to the Necropolis Memorial Funeral Home in northern Quito to lay their loved ones to rest. Some carried flags, photos of the journalists and banners to accompany the funeral chariots, according to El Comercio.
Last week, outgoing Colombian president Juan Manuel Santos tweeted that authorities may have found the remains of the three still missing.
It wasn’t until Monday after the medical institute could make DNA comparisons with the victims’ families and interview them extensively regarding any scars, marks or tattoos the slain may have had, that authorities in both countries could unequivocally confirm the identity of the bodies.
Last Friday the institute tweeted that the dental charts of the three murdered were "totally insufficient" to confirm if they were the remains of the those who worked at El Comercio. The bodies were in too far a state of decomposition making DNA comparisons with their likely living relatives in Ecuador necessary to confirm the identities of those found in Tumaco, Colombia at the border with Ecuador.
The public tweeting by government authorities in both Colombia and Ecuador over the topic prompted the families to release a statement that authorities refrain from using tweets to communicate about such a delicate matter.
On Monday, the families told the public: "We insist that NO ONE FORGETS this, that there is NO IMPUNITY, and there is NO REPETITION (of these events). These kidnappings and killings cannot become normal, they can't become naturalized. And those responsible at all levels must be established."
In a meeting with the families of the slain earlier this week, Colombia's ombudsman Carlos Negret told them: “We will find the truth about what happened to these Ecuadorean citizens.”