Javier Sicilia is a Mexican father, poet, and citizen who lost his son in a drug war massacre on March 28, 2011. Juan Francisco Sicilia Ortega was murdered along with six friends in an act of violence that Morelos state authorities immediately dismissed as a settling of accounts. Juan Francisco and his friends murders took place in the context of more than 38,000 mostly nameless victims of this cruel and unnecessary war.

Rather than retreat to the shadows of shock or fear, Sicilia has turned the pain of his searing loss into a tool for peace by convening marches and building a movement to free Mexico from the dogmas, dark alliances, impunity, and political expediency that fuel this tragic war.

On June 1, 2011 Mr. Sicilia was honored by Global Exchange (globalexchange.org) at the 9th Annual Human Rights Awards. Watch his speech here: vimeo.com/25114103

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