Rodrigo Ventosilla: LGBTQ activists call for protests at Peruvian embassies after Harvard grad’s death in Bali

Rodrigo Ventosilla, 32, was detained by customs police shortly after arriving within the in style Indonesian vacationer vacation spot together with his new husband Sebastian Marallano on a deliberate honeymoon on August 6 and was later accused of hashish possession.

He died 5 days later in hospital in circumstances that stay unclear. A Bali police spokesman mentioned Ventosilla fell in poor health after ingesting treatment that was not a part of the objects confiscated by police and died of “failure of bodily capabilities.”

His household allege that each Ventosilla and Marallano had been subjected to “racial discrimination and transphobia” throughout their time in police detention — claims which have angered the Peruvian LGBTQ group and prompted protests within the capital of Lima on Friday.

The police spokesperson denied any threats of violence in the direction of Ventosilla.

The Peruvian Overseas Ministry reiterated Indonesia’s robust stance in the direction of medicine and appeared to dismiss the household’s allegations of “racial discrimination and transphobia” on the a part of native police in the direction of the couple. “It’s broadly identified that Indonesia has a zero tolerance coverage in terms of possession of medicine and their derivatives,” the ministry mentioned in a press release.

A demonstrator places a flyer outside Peru's Foreign Ministry building in Lima

Observe-up calls and emails from CNN to the Peruvian consulate within the Indonesian capital Jakarta additionally went unanswered.

Nevertheless, the ministry’s stance has fueled the anger and the Lima-based group Diversidades Trans Masculinas, a community of activists based by Ventosilla, has known as for additional protests.

“Following Rodrigo’s dying in Bali, we name on supporters to affix us in a sit-in exterior Peruvian embassies and consulates from world wide to demand justice,” the group mentioned on Fb.

It accused the Peruvian consulate of failing to behave on the case and ignoring the pleas of each Ventosilla’s household and the “worldwide (trans) group.”

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Luz Manriquez, an LGBTQ activist who was on the protest on Friday, criticized the Peruvian authorities for not demanding an unbiased investigation.

“It lacks empathy as a result of it doesn’t acknowledge {that a} Peruvian has died within the arms of police from one other nation,” Manriquez mentioned.

Luzmo Henriquez, a lawyer for the household, informed CNN they might be submitting a criticism towards the Indonesian police and drug-enforcement businesses alleging torture and would additionally search redress from the Peruvian consulate in Indonesia, which he accused of failing to discharge its duties to the 2 males.

Ventosilla had been pursuing a grasp’s diploma in Public Administration in Worldwide Growth on the Harvard Kennedy College. Dean Douglas Elmendorf mentioned in a press release that it was “a really painful time for a lot of on the Kennedy College” and supported the household’s name for a right away and thorough investigation into Ventosilla’s dying. “The assertion from Rodrigo’s household raises very critical questions that deserve clear and correct solutions,” Elmendorf mentioned.

“The College stands with all of Rodrigo’s buddies and colleagues and with the LGBTQ group.”

The Bali police spokesperson informed CNN that preparations had been being made for Ventosilla’s physique to be flown again to Lima.

Not like among the extra conservative areas of largely Muslim Indonesia — such because the province of Aceh, the place homosexual intercourse is punishable by flogging in public — Bali, which is majority Hindu, is normally seen as tolerant of LGBTQ vacationers.

Andreas Harsono, Indonesia researcher at Human Rights Watch, mentioned it was vital for Bali to research the dying.

“Police ought to conduct an unbiased and neutral investigation into Rodrigo Ventosilla’s dying,” Harsono mentioned. “His household and buddies need to know why and the way he had died.”

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