Mexico: The Citizens’ Pact is signed in Juárez

Sicilia with the Citizens’ Pact @ El Universal

More than 500 persons traveled nearly 3000 kilometers in the seven days of the Caravan of Consolation that traversed 12 Mexican states and carried out public events in 9 such states.  Hundreds of women, wives, and children testified to their suffering.  Javier Sicilia sustains that President Felipe Calderón sees no more than the gardens of Los Pinos and that he continues to be deaf to the cries of thousands of people who demand justice and peace, while the political parties and actors such as Enrique Peña Nieto, Andrés Manuel López Obrador, and Marcelo Ebrard have demonstrated their lack of capacity for attending to the demands of relatives of those victimized by the war against drug-trafficking.  “What we see is a country of victims, and for this reason I said that I hoped that the president would listen.  We are bringing him a CD so that he can listen to the testimonies, that he see the impunity in the country, that he sees that crime is also found in the State, so that we can reach his heart to show him that his strategy is excessively puritan and aggressive, that it is not a good strategy for remaking the country,” expressed the poet.

The National Pact for Peace with Justice and Dignity was signed in Ciudad Juárez on 10 June.  The central point of the pact is the demilitarization of the country, but it also calls for a change in strategy with regard to combating organized crime, the struggle against governmental corruption, the restructuring of institutions, and a new social policy especially oriented toward offering more opportunities to the youth.  Six points define the manifesto: the clarification of the murder and disappearances of victims, an end to the strategy of war, that the authorities assume a focus on citizens’ security, against corruption and impunity as well as dealing with the economic roots and profits of crime.  Another of the points it demands is an end to the Mérida Initiative that has been supported since 2008 by the US government to give economic resources and training to the Mexican government in its struggle against narco-trafficking.  The signatories to the Pact demand that the deaths resulting from the war be clarified, that the human rights of the victims’ relatives be protected, and that the money set aside for x be transferred to the affected.  It also calls for efficient and ethical policies regarding media work.  The citizens’ agreement is still changeable, and it is hoped that the number of signatories increase following a national consultation.

During the caravan’s trip, Sicilia had warned the federal government that, if Calderón does not take seriously the points established by the Pact for Peace, there would be organized a peaceful civil-resistance movement led in various regions by a specific public representative, tax-evasion, and a boycott of the 2012 elections.

The document has been signed by Sicilia, Raúl Vera, Miguel Concha, Julián LeBarón, Emilio Álvarez Icaza, the 500 victims who traveled in the caravan, as well as representatives from social and citizens’ organizations that attended the public events.  The document can be signed in public plazas throughout the country and on the internet at redporlapaz.org.

For more information (in Spanish):

Resumen Pacto Nacional Ciudadano, Milenio, 10 June 2011

La Caravana por la Paz aguarda la respuesta de las autoridades mexicanas, CNN México, 14 June 2011

‘Aún se puede evitar el estallido’, El Diario de Coahuila, 12 June 2011

“Pacto Ciudadano por la Paz con Justicia y Dignidad”, Milenio, 14 June 2011

La Caravana del Consuelo, La Jornada, 14 June 2011

Qué hacer, de nuevo, La Jornada, 13 June 2011

Respaldan iglesias el pacto ciudadano, La Jornada, 11 June 2011
Celebra Reginaldo Sandoval pacto nacional ciudadano contra la violencia en México
, La Jornada Michoacán, 11 June 2011

El Pacto de Sicilia…. Y la posibilidad de la radicalización, El Universal, 14 June 2011

Firmarán hoy en Juárez pacto ciudadano por la paz, El Universal, 10 June 2011

Signan pacto ciudadano en Ciudad Juárez, El Universal, 11 June 2011

Firman Pacto Ciudadano y anuncian resistencia, El Universal, 11 June 2011

For more information from SIPAZ (in English):

Mexico: Beginning of the caravan for peace from Cuernavaca to Ciudad Juárez (9 June 2011)

Mexico: Marches for Peace and Justice with Dignity (12 May 2011)

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