The Dwyer family, from Ballinderry, Tipperary – whose son, Michael, was executed by Bolivian state police on April 16, 2009 – travelled to the European Parliament yesterday, Wednesday, April 11. They are seeking support for their request for the European Union to bring the Bolivian authorities to account for the circumstances of their son’s death.
During their visit, the family met with Ireland’s MEPs and secure their continued support for European pressure to be brought to bear on the Bolivian authorities.
They also requested a meeting with officials from the office of UN High Representative, Catherine Ashton, to establish what efforts are being made at an EU level to secure information about the killing of Michael Dwyer.
The family is concerned that, as the third anniversary of their son’s death approaches, evidence surrounding his killing may begin to fall away. The family is particularly concerned that:
· There has not been a comprehensive investigation into the killing of Michael Dwyer.
· No comprehensive police reports have been made available to the family / external authorities, and it remains unclear as to who killed Michael Dwyer and who provided the authorisation for his killing.
The family continues to seek an international investigation into the death of their son and believe that the European Union can exercise some pressure in bringing about accountability and answers surrounding the killing of Michael Dwyer.
The family continues to maintain close communication with the Tánaiste and Minister for Foreign Affairs and Trade, Eamon Gilmore, and they are hopeful that Ireland will use the upcoming EU Presidency to progress their desire to secure information about their son’s killing.
“It is high time the Bolivian authorities account for the circumstances of Michael Dwyer´s death, said Labour MEP from Munster, Clonmel’s Phil Prendergast.
Speaking from Brussels Ms. Prendergast said: “Three years into the execution of Michael Dwyer, an Irish citizen, by Bolivian state police, his family are still struggling to understand the circumstances surrounding his death. They deserve closure and the international community needs to push for accountability.
“We again request that more pressure be brought to bear on the Bolivian authorities to account for this execution, and that Michael Dwyer’s case be raised at every opportunity through the various EU foreign relations channels with Bolivia.
The group also met with Ricardo Cortes Lastra MEP, who recently led a delegation from the European Parliament’s Development Committee to Bolivia, where Michael Dwyer’s killing was raised. He reported back on his efforts to secure further information.
An official from the Irish Permanent Representation to the EU was also be in attendance at the briefing we have organised for Irish MEPs in the European Parliament.
“The Tánaiste and Minister for Foreign Affairs and Trade Eamon Gilmore has kept in close touch with the Dwyer family. We hope that the Irish Presidency of the EU in 2013 will enable us to make progress in providing closure and accountability for Michael Dwyer´s death.”