Johnson “Tony” Merlo Sevilla
“No forgiveness, no forgetting”
Murdered in Managua on June 23, 2018
Johnson Tonatyu Merlo Sevilla was shot dead when he was manning one of the barricades located on the road from the Iván Montenegro Market, in the 8 de Marzo Neighborhood of Managua.
Yanilda del Carmen Sevilla, his mother, cannot forget the most terrible moment that she ever experienced. “I cannot conceive of the idea that my son is dead,” she says with profound pain.
She remembers that this 24-year-old man, known as “Tony Merlo” by his university classmates, was killed on June 23, the day that Father’s Day is celebrated in Nicaragua. He himself was going to be a father of a baby that died as a result of the government repression.
Elsa Valle, university student, was Johnson’s girlfriend and was pregnant when she was kidnapped by the police and taken to prison. There, she was forced to abort the baby, as a result of the beatings and torture, Yanilda says.
“My son lost his life and then lost his son. That is why I ask for justice, justice without impunity. No forgiveness, no forgetting,” she says.
Elsa Valle, who was released from jail after several months in custody, says that she will never forget “Tony” or the son that she could not bear. “I will never be able to forget all that… I have had dreams in which he is with our baby. So I think that now they are both together and they take care of each other.”
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