Languages
Page last updated at 23:30 GMT, Thursday, 28 May 2009 00:30 UK

New president weeps over dead son

Mauricio Funes
Mauricio Funes spoke to his son on the night before his death

The president-elect of El Salvador has made an emotional statement at a trial for his son's murder in Paris.

"I am a man who is not seeking vengeance... only the truth," said Mauricio Funes. He wept in court.

Alejandro Funes, 27, a photography student in France, died in October 2007 from stab wounds on a pedestrian bridge near the Louvre Museum.

Mohamed Amor, the main suspect, has asked the family for forgiveness. The motive of the attack is unclear.

Mr Amor has already told the court he cannot remember exactly what happened.

"I never wanted to kill him," he said. If found guilty he could spend up to 30 years in prison.

Another suspect is also on trial for allegedly participating in the attack.

'Shared ideals'

Mr Funes spoke to his son by telephone the night before his death.

"The least we can hope for is to know the facts and establish who is responsible," he said.

"All this will not bring back my son, but I want to honour his memory," he added.

The weapon used to kill Alejandro is believed to have been an awl - a pointed tool for making holes in wood or leather.

President-elect Funes's brother was shot dead at the beginning of El Salvador's civil war in 1980 and safety had been a factor in Alejandro leaving the country, plagued by gang violence, to study in France.

"We thought he would be safer here.. I would never have imagined that he would be beaten to death here," said Mr Funes, unable to stop himself from crying as he spoke.

The left-wing leader, who takes office in June following his electoral victory in March, paid tribute to his son.

"We shared the same ideals, the same life projects and the desire to transform El Salvador, to convert it into a just society that would put an end to violence," Mr Funes said.



Print Sponsor


SEE ALSO
Left-winger wins El Salvador poll
16 Mar 09 |  Americas
El Salvador rivals in last appeal
09 Mar 09 |  Americas
Former rebels win Salvador poll
25 Jan 09 |  Americas
Timeline: El Salvador
16 Aug 12 |  Country profiles
Country profile: El Salvador
16 Aug 12 |  Country profiles

RELATED INTERNET LINKS
The BBC is not responsible for the content of external internet sites


FEATURES, VIEWS, ANALYSIS
Has China's housing bubble burst?
How the world's oldest clove tree defied an empire
Why Royal Ballet principal Sergei Polunin quit

BBC navigation

BBC © 2014 The BBC is not responsible for the content of external sites. Read more.

This page is best viewed in an up-to-date web browser with style sheets (CSS) enabled. While you will be able to view the content of this page in your current browser, you will not be able to get the full visual experience. Please consider upgrading your browser software or enabling style sheets (CSS) if you are able to do so.

Americas Africa Europe Middle East South Asia Asia Pacific