Testimony in Jesuits massacre case in Spain
The Center for Justice and Accountability provides this update on the case in Spain where former Salvadoran military officials are being tried for the 1989 murder of the Jesuits:
In an unprecedented proceeding, CJA's International Attorney, Almudena Bernabeu, took evidence yesterday from the only surviving non-military eye-witnesses to the massacre which occurred just over twenty years ago at the University of Central America "José Siméon Cañas" (UCA). Jorge and Lucía Cerna testified before Spanish Judge Eloy Velasco from the United States via video conference. This proceeding marks the first time that the U.S. government, to our knowledge, has allowed evidence to be taken on U.S. soil in a human rights prosecution in another country. A representative from the U.S. Department of Justice was present for the Cernas' testimony.
On November 15, 1989, Lucia Cerna was a housekeeper for the UCA and sought refuge from the raging civil war at the University with her husband, Jorge, and their 4-year-old daughter. Little did they realize that the Salvadoran military would launch an attack at the UCA that very night. The Cernas both testified about witnessing the raid by the Salvadoran military and the murder of the six Jesuit priests, their housekeeper and her daughter.
This is the first time that Lucia Cerna has testified since she and her family were forced to flee El Salvador twenty years ago as a result of a statement she gave which identified the Salvadoran military as responsible for the murders at the UCA. Today's testimony also represents the first time Jorge Cerna has presented his eye-witness account in a criminal proceeding.