Argentina’s Mothers of the Plaza de Mayo took to the streets of Buenos Aires Thursday to demand justice for the murder of 13-year-old Ismael Ramirez who was caught in a crossfire during a failed robbery attempt when a group of some 50 people burst into a local supermarket in the city of Presidencia Roque Sáenz Peña, Chaco Monday evening.
Director of the ‘Madres de Plaza Mayo’, Hebe de Bonafini, called her fellow women to take part in the group's 2,108th march Thursday afternoon, saying that President Mauricio Macri and the Security Minister Patricia Bullrich are responsible for the youth’s death.
"The young man was killed with a bullet shot in the back when he went looking for food. The mothers will march so that there are no more murdered children," Bonafini said.
In an emotional letter published by La Garganta Poderosa, the victim’s older brother, Daniel Ramirez, mourned for his loss. "I'm going to miss him every second of my life. Who am I going to walk with now? Who will make me laugh out loud? Who will bother me every morning? I swear it will be unbearable to never have him by my side again."
The older sibling explained the pair had entered the supermarket by chance while searching for their mother, and despite the best efforts of paramedics, Ismael was dead by the time they reached the hospital.
"Together with my family, we demand justice for Ismael and that they imprison the person who pulled the trigger, to calm this pain a little. If we do not want this to happen again, the people should live better," he wrote.
Since his death, the details of the tragedy have been twisted and confused by online communities, said Ramirez’s school teacher, Patricia Ramirez in a Facebook post.
“On top of this pain because of his death, we have to put up with a lot of lies. They are saying a lot of ugly things, they are publishing photos of him that are not his ... this can not be tolerated,” she said.
“This photo that I shared is the photo of the celebration of Children's Day, where you can see that he was a child, like any other child, and as a child he has rights, rights that were not respected, the right to life, and also another right that is not being respected: the right to dignity, so please ask respect for your family in this difficult moment,” the teacher wrote.
The Mothers of Plaza de Mayo is a human rights organization in Argentina that has fought for justice on behalf of victims of violence as well as those who were disappeared during Argentina's military regime in 1977.
During Argentina’s last dictatorship, an estimated 500 babies and small children were taken from political opponents who were systematically disappeared. The group has also become an integral part of the struggle for memory, truth, and justice in relation to the crimes committed by the Argentine state during the dictatorship.
The organization has so far found 127 grandchildren as part of their search for 500 babies that were taken away from their activist mothers and families, and believed to have been stolen by military families, sold, or abandoned in government institutions.