Friday, 27 March 2009

Peru: Edmundo Camana Is Dead

Recently, I wrote about Edmundo Camana and his photograph, which as one of the best known images from Yuyanapaq has become one of the icons of the Peruvian conflict. I pointed out that a new controversy had blown up surrounding the photograph and its subject; namely, that congressman Edgar Núñez had tried to claim that the image was a fake. This story has taken a strange and regrettable turn. Camana has died.

Peruvian blog utero de marita reports that, in summary, Ayacuchan congresswoman Huancahuari located Camana and found that he was in need of medical attention. According to various sources, he had been disabled for some years, apparently as a result of the injuries he sustained during the machete attack by the Shining Path in Lucanamarca. She arranged for him to be admitted to the Instituto Nacional de Ciencias Neurológicas (National Institute of Neurological Sciences) for treatment, which he duly was. The Institute found that he was suffering from paralysis in his legs, but did not consider his life at risk.

Then, a week later, Camana's nephew Raúl Jiménez Camana turned up and discharged him from the institute and readmitted him to the clinic of the military hospital. And, Jiménez Camana is a supporter of the APRA party. News sources are reporting that Edmundo's transfer was on the orders of aprista Edgar Núñez. Shortly afterwards, Edmundo suddenly died.

At utero de maria, you can also see copies of his death certificate and medical report from the first clinic. There is a mixed bag of responses to the post as well. Most are not rushing to believe in a conspiracy theory of Camana's murder by the government, but suspicions are already roused and such a theory will arise if the
background is not fully clarified in short order. Many accept that he was not a well man by any standards, and some lament that he was 'used' by the media, government, or human rights groups. There are certainly questions surrounding these events: why was Camana moved and was this the best option for him medically? Did the stress of recent publicity cause him further harm? Was he pressured in any way? Núñez will now be called on to explain his involvement in the man's treatment.

The CNDDHH is among those demanding an explanation.

See also
“Édgar Núñez usó a Camana para desprestigiar a la CVR” (La Republica)

[all links Spanish language]

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