Reference : V-P-PE-E-01250
Date : 06/2018
Country/Region : PERU
Caption : Huamanga province, Ayacucho. More than 70,000 people died in Peru during the armed conflict that took place between 1980 and 2000. Today, almost 20,000 families are still searching for their relatives who "disappeared" during this period.
Photographer : ABRIL, Laia
Confidentiality level : public
Publication restrictions : publication without restrictions
Copyright : ICRC
Description : This picture is from an exhibition "Suyay", by the artist Laia Abril. It depicts the pain and resilience of families waiting for answers concerning the fate of their missing relatives in Peru. The exhibition was held at the Centre de la Photographie Genève from 7 to 25 November 2018. The show's title from the Quecha word suyay, which means "to wait."

Exhibition extract: "Father's Day"
Roger Santos was seven years old in 1991 when his father, Martin Cayllahua, was arrested by the security forces. He has not been heard from since. His disappearance has been the subject of a case before the Inter-American Court of Human Rights and two major trials in Peru, but his remains have still not been found. During one of the hearings, Collins Collantes, the commander of the squad that abducted Martín Cayllahua, approached Roger, offered his hand and apologised for what had happened. Santos accepted his apology.

Roger Santos is a member of ANFASEP and runs the association Viviendas Nuevo Amanecer, a housing project in Huachipa, where relatives of the disappeared have been rehoused. The only thing he has left of his father is the poncho he wore. Santos is still searching for his father's remains. The day he was supposed to give an interview at his home was Father's Day, and Santos cancelled it. "

ICRC website, article of 08.11.2018:
"Waiting is never passive: New photos shed light on Peru’s missing

Twenty thousand families sit suspended between life and death: unable to mourn or move forward until they know the fate of their relatives.

Waiting is not a passive activity:
The women in this exhibition tirelessly campaigning to discover the fate of their loved ones. None more so than Adelina Garcia, former president of ANFASEP, who has been searching for her husband since he went missing in 1983.

"Too often the full story is not told. That's why it was important for me to be a part of this project as it's important to me that people know the entire story, and the stories of what has happened to other women as well," Garcia said at the exhibition opening.

"I won't be able to stop until I find his remains and can bury him. For instance, my mum is buried in the cemetery. Sometimes I go and sit down beside her. I talk to her, and tell her what I'm doing. But on 4 January, when it's his birthday, I can't do that," Garcias said.

It is impossible to know exactly how many people are missing today as a result of armed conflicts, migration or natural disasters.
This photo series reminds us that no matter how much time passes, the inter-generational trauma for families is everlasting."
Original material : digital
Resolution : 5616x3744
Orientation : landscape
Colour/B&W : colour