By: Rachel Womek
I have something very serious to talk about.
As a citizen of Las Cruces, NM, this case really hits home for me. Right now Mexican journalist Emilio Gutierrez Soto and his son are seeking Political Asylum here in the U.S. Because of his dedication to Journalism and the pursuit of Truth, Mr.Gutierrez’ life is in severe danger should he be forced to return to his home country.
According to CJFE (Canadian Journalists for Free Expression), Mr. Gutierrez initially reported about corruption in the Mexican Military in 2005; after receiving multiple threats, including a home search, Gutierrez fled to the U.S. in 2008. Initially he was placed in a detention center but was released after 8 months due to the actions of journalist and human rights groups. Currently he is waiting on determination of his case. Political Asylum is very difficult to get in the U.S, especially for Mexicans. Unless we speak out this brave journalist and his son will be sent back to Mexico to await their uncertain fates.
Unless we speak out for Emilio Gutierrez Soto his case will be passed over. Please speak out for Free Speech and Journalist Rights.
I have an example letter to use as a base to send (I would encourage you to change the letter and personalize it):
Re:Political Asylum in the Matters of:
Emilio Gutierrez Soto, Case No. A# 077-491-780 Oscar Gutierrez Soto, Case No. A# 094-954-970*
Dear Mr. Gastelo:
These cases involve my friends: Mexican journalist Emilio Gutierrez Soto and
his teen-age son Oscar, now a college student at NMSU, who four years ago
fled for their lives from Mexico into the U.S. as a result of death threats
from the Mexican army and narcotics cartels because of stories Emilio had
written in the newspaper El Diario. The threats were and are real. If
Emilio and Oscar had not fled they would have been murdered as have been at
least 74 other Mexican journalists.
When Emilio and Oscar arrived at Antelope Wells, NM Port of Entry seeking
political asylum both were incarcerated, Emilio for about 8 months, Oscar
for a shorter period. This case has received significant national and international
attention. Surely the Gutierrez family meets the criteria for political asylum. Like many of us who are fortunate to know and admire these two I am confounded as to why this case has taken so long to adjudicate. It has been almost four years
and Emilio and Oscar still suffer under the threat of deportation all the
while making friends, leading honorable lives and being self-supporting.
Please expedite this case and put an end to the uncertainty. Let Emilio
and Oscar remain in the U.S. and give them political asylum.