National: Lack of confidence and strong criticisms of the Second Governmental Report presented by EPN

September 15, 2014

Foto @ Cuartoscuro

On 1 September, President Enrique Peña Nieto (EPN) presented to the Congress his second governmental report after 21 months of management that have seen the approval of 11 structural reforms and negative results in terms of security, economic growth, and employment rate, according to official statistics and experts.

The Movement More than 131 together with Youth Amidst the National Emergency, Migration Table 132, Services and Assessment for Peace (SERAPAZ), the Movement for Peace with Justice and Dignity, and Article 19 launched a video to expose “the questions that President Enrique Peña Nieto’s report omitted” using the hashtag #MexicoHasNoPresident.  SERAPAZ warned that, two years into his administration, more than 23,640 murders have been registered, in addition to 22,322 victims forcibly disappeared.  For its part, Migration 132 stressed that the Southern Border Strategy recently launched by EPN’s government “seeks only to militarize the border.”  Furthermore, Mexico has no official data regarding disappeared migrants. Article 19 reported that during EPN’s government, seven journalists have been murdered, possibly due to the exercise of their profession; that in 2013, 330 attacks on the press were observed in Mexico, with more than 150 journalists assaulted during the first half of 2014.  It noted that “public resources of the State are used to control the editorial line of the communication media.”

Édgar Cortez, from the Mexican Institute on Human Rights and Democracy, indicated that the content of the governmental report is poor, because “it only presents a series of laws and programs as successes, when these are not translated into concrete actions and results” that would result in the observance of these guarantees.  “Neither does it say anything about the great question which has existed since the beginning: impunity.  Nor does it present any strategy for how to combat it,” adding that “it does not deal with serious problems that continue to present themselves in the country,” such as the practice of torture as a means of investigation.  He said that there still are no indications that the government has an effective policy in terms of human rights. José Antonio Lara Duque, coordinator of the Zeferino Ladrillero Center for Human Rights, noted that cases of forcible disappearances, extrajudicial executions, and other human-rights violations continue unabated, since the government has not modified its strategy against organized crime.  Lara Duque observed in addition that, following the approval of the energy reform, a policy will be applied for the imposition of megaprojects that will degrade the rights of ejidtarios and indigenous peoples.

For more information (in Spanish):

Documento: 2º Informe de Gobierno 2013-2014 (septiembre 2014)

EPN habló más de promesas que de logros en 2do informe: PAN y PRD(Aristegui Noticias, 3 de septiembre de 2014)
Muestra Segundo Informe retrocesos en procuración de justicia(Quadratín Oaxaca, 2 de septiembre de 2014)
For more information from SIPAZ (in English):

Nacional: Submission of First Governmental Report amidst protests and mass-disturbances (13 September 2013)

National: Polemical ascension of EPN (7 December 2012)


National: New Amnesty International report, “Out of Control: Torture and Other Abuses in Mexico”

September 15, 2014

(@Amnistía Internacional)

On 4 September, Amnesty International published a new report, “Out of Control: Torture and Other Abuses in Mexico.”  The organization affirms that “torture and other abuses are out of control in Mexico.  In 2013, the number of denunciations (1505) increased 600 per cent with respect to 2003, according to the National Commission on Human Rights (CNDH).  However, the real statistics may be well higher.”

Speakers at the public presentation of the report indicated that torture lives on due to the unwillingness of national authorities to admit that it exists, not only because it a structural part of the justice system, but also because to eradicate it would require the unmasking of high-ranking officials implicated in the practice.

Furthermore, with regard to the mechanisms designed to avoid this type of situation, Rupert Knox, an AI special investigator, noted that the CNDH “does not act in favor of victims,” and especially in terms of torture, it is “part of the problem and not the solution.”

The document covers a ten-year period during which the CNDH registered 7,164 complaints, with 275 in 2003 and 1,505 last year.  All these denunciations led to nothing more than 4 recommendations from the CNDH.  “If it is not recognized that there is a truly persistent and generalized problem here; if one speaks, as the subsecretary of Governance did, of only four cases from the CNDH and claims that they [the CNDH] has no greater mandate, it is easy for the government, and all is lost, because the CNDH does not mandate the needed mechanisms to receive complaints, quantify them, and later investigate them as they should be investigated,” Knox said in an interview with media.

For more information (in Spanish):

La tortura en México: 14 datos (Amnistía Internacional, 4 de septiembre de 2014)

“Fuera de control: Tortura y otros malos tratos en México” (Amnistía Internacional, 4 de septiembre de 2014)

Peña debe comprometerse a abordar la cuestión de la tortura (Salil Shetty, Secretario General de Amnistía Internacional, CNN México, 5 de octubre de 2014)

CNDH, “parte del problema en casos de tortura”: Amnistía Internacional(Proceso, 4 de septiembre de 2014)

Tortura, parte estructural del sistema judicial del país: ONG (LA Jornada, 7 de septiembre de 2014)

For more information from SIPAZ (in English):

Chiapas: Presentation of the Special Report: “Torture, mechanism of terror” (3 July 2014)

National: UN Special Rapporteur on torture ends official visit to Mexico (16 May 2014)

Chiapas: release of indigenous prisoners and denunciation of torture in the state (29 April 2014)

Chiapas: Torture and killing of youth the responsibility of municipal police from Acala, CDHFBC denounces (18 March 2014)

Chiapas: Torture and kidnapping of youth Hiber Audentino García Villafuerte (1 January, 2014)


National: FPDT of Atenco initiates mobilizations following announcement of new airport

September 15, 2014

Foto @ Blog del Frente de Pueblos en Defensa de la Tierra (FPDT) de San Salvador Atenco

Photo @ Blog del Frente de Pueblos en Defensa de la Tierra (FPDT) de San Salvador Atenco

The Front of Peoples in Defense of the Land (FPDT), based in the ejidos of San Salvador Atenco, started mobilizations on 2 September against the construction of a new airport in the Texcoco zone, as announced by President Enrique Peña Nieto in his second government report.  The mobilizations included marches, roadblocks, and other protests, beyond the request for judicial support to nullify the authorization of change of use of land, as approved by ejidal groups in assembly on 1 July.  Said assembly, according to the FPDT, was carried out “illegally, because it was manipulated; the necessary quorum was not observed.”

The first action was taken with the symbolic occupation of construction machinery belonging to the Virgo form as hired by the National Water Commission (CONAGUA), which carries out work to maintain a canal that moves waste-water.  These works were being performed within the ejidal zone, thus constituting a “provocation.”  The FPDT assured that the lands in question had been taken by CONAGUA “illegally, by coopting the [ejidal] commisisoners and carrying out fraudulent assemblies.”

For more information (in Spanish):

Con “toma” de maquinaria, Atenco inicia protestas contra aeropuerto(Blog del Frente de Pueblos en Defensa de la Tierra (FPDT) de San Salvador Atenco, 3 de septiembre de 2014)

Habitantes de San Salvador Atenco inician movilizaciones contra el nuevo aeropuerto (La Jornada, 4 de septiembre de 2014)

Rechaza el FPDT que se erija el nuevo aeropuerto en Texcoco (La Jornada, 3 de septiembre de 2014)

Tema ambiental, la parte débil del nuevo AICM (El Economista, 3 de septiembre de 2014)

For more information from SIPAZ (in English):

National: After 8 years of impunity in Atenco, threat to build airport continues (16 May 2014)

Mexico: Atenco five years on, raped women continue demanding justice (6 May 2011)

Atenco: repression in San Salvador Atenco, 4 years on (11 May 2010)


National: After 8 years of impunity in Atenco, threat to build airport continues

May 16, 2014

Foto @ Regeneración Radio

Photo @ Regeneración Radio

8 years ago, on 3 and 4 May 2006, residents of San Salvador Atenco and Texcoco suffered a strong repression when Enrique Peña Nieto, the current president of Mexico, was governor of the state of Mexico.  As a result of this, 47 women were sexually assaulted by police, two youth were killed, and 207 were arrested.

On 5 May, the Agustín Pro Juárez Center for Human Rights presented the campaign “Breaking the silence: all together against sexual violence.”  The objective of the campaign is to make visible the torture–principally sexual–exercised systematically against women by security forces after these were arrested for protesting; the campaign also seeks to accompany these women and to continue denouncing the government’s strategy to see these women as “war booty.”  Norma Jiménez noted that nothing has been easy since they undertook this struggle to denounce the acts which took place 8 years ago, given that they were sexually tortured, but she observed that people in solidarity have given them the strength to carry on, though now they think that it is is important to express solidarity with other women, because “it seems that all of us are in a similar situation, as though they had arrested us all–that is because this is all a conscious strategy.”  For this reason, other women who have joined the campaign include Inés Fernández and Valentina Rosendo, Me’phaa indigenous women from Guerrero who in 2002 began another struggle to denounce the rights-violations and sexual torture to which they were subjected by soldiers in the Mexican Army.

Beyond this, the Front for Peoples in Defense of the Land (FPDT) recently accused the municipal government of San Salvador Atenco of organizing assemblies in which representatives of federal authorities have attempted to convince ejidatarios from Atenco and Texcoco to sell their lands for the construction of a new international airport for Mexico City.  Jesús Adán Espinoza noted that the federal government would face serious opposition if it attempted to carry out its urbanization plans for “Future City” and “Rescue of the Former Texcoco Lake,” as such works would only reactivate the project to build the new airport.  “These projects will only bring the further degradation of our traditions, customs, and our lands if we allow them to pass,” he declared.

For more information (in Spanish):

“Rompiendo el silencio:Todas juntas contra la tortura sexual”(Regeneración Radio, 6 de mayo de 2014)

Acusan a autoridades de Atenco de convencer a ejidatarios para aceptar construcción de aeropuerto (La Jornada, 28 de marzo de 2014)

A 8 años. Atenco no olvidamos: una mirada desde La Sexta (Coordinador Valle de Chalko, 8 de mayo de 2014)

“No insistan, no vamos a desistir en abandonar nuestras tierras y viviendas” (Reporteros en Movimiento, 5 de mayo de 2014)

Carta de Solidaridad con Atenco: ¡No olvidamos lo que pasó los 3 y 4 de mayo, tampoco la lucha en contra del aeropuerto! (Enlace Zapatista, 8 de mayo de 2014)

For more information from SIPAZ (in English):

Mexico: Atenco five years on, raped women continue demanding justice (6 May 2011)

Atenco: repression in San Salvador Atenco, 4 years on (11 May 2010)


Chiapas: Las Abejas lament release of yet another of those charged for Acteal massacre

March 27, 2013

(@actealblogspot.com, foto de archivo)

During the religious celebration performed in the most recent monthly commemoration of the Acteal massacre, the Las Abejas Civil Society lamented that the Supreme Court for Justice in the Nation (SCJN) has released another indigenous person who had been incarcerated on the charge of having participated in the 22 December 1997 massacre in Acteal.  Las Abejas affirmed that “What we are now living here in Mexico confirms what we Abejas have always said: the organisms of the Mexican justice system do not serve justice but rather the interests of the powerful.”

“As in the case of the paramilitaries released previously, we are told that the reason for his release had to do with failures and violations to ‘due process.’  We think and denounce that this is nothing more than a pretext on the part of the authorities to twist justice in the way that is most convenient to them.”  Demonstrating this claim, Las Abejas indicated that the SCJN had denied review of the case of Alberto Patishtán, given that that case is marked by irregularities; moreover, the SCJN attended to the case of Florence Cassez, who had claimed failures to due process and was so released.  Another example that was mentioned was the “‘false Abejas’ who are playing with Salinas de Gortari so as to avenge Ernesto Zedillo, and a collegiate court immediately grants the motion to permit the continuation of the case against Zedillo in the U.S.”

Las Abejas assert that “the lack of justice and the means in which the authorities use law only for their benefit have resulted in the fact that throughout Mexico, some communities organize themselves for armed self-defense, as in the case of our friends from the Regional Coordination of Communal Authorities of the Mountain and Costa Chica of Guerrero.”  Distinguishing their perspective from that of many authorities and media, Las Abejas noted that “One thing is that people amidst total impunity organize themselves to apply justice according to their own methods, and another very different thing is seen when the government, unsatisfied with using its own repressive apparatus, resorts to using a part of the people who are tricked into repressing their own brothers.”

Finally, Las Abejas closed with saying that they are “seeking other means to obtain the justice that is denied us by the government, such as the Inter-American Commission on Human Rights.  But for now we will say that we reject the ‘friendly’ calls made by the Mexican government through the IACHR to our brothers and sisters in Atenco, who have rejected these proposals with the same dignity we shall employ.”

For more information (in Spanish):

Comunicado completo (Sociedad Civil Las Abejas, 22 de marzo de 2013)

Los grupos de autodefensa, resultado de la impunidad en el país, aseguran Las Abejas (La Jornada, 26 de marzo de 2013)

Confían en nuevo Papa (Cuarto Poder, 23 de marzo de 2013)

Abejas lamentan más liberaciones por Acteal (Noticiasnet.mx, 25 de marzo de 2013)

For more information from SIPAZ (in English):

Chiapas: New communique from Las Abejas de Acteal (24 January 2013)

Chiapas: Commemoration of 20th anniversary of Las Abejas and coming 15th anniversary of the Acteal massacre (21 December 2012)

Chiapas: Survivor of Acteal massacre dies (16 November 2012)

Chiapas: the Las Abejas Civil Society denounces reactivation of paramilitaries in its community (12 October 2012)

National-International: Zedillo obtains immunity for the Acteal case(19 September 2012)

 


Mexico: Atenco five years on, raped women continue demanding justice

May 6, 2011

Photo: Centro-Prodh

Five years after the police incursion in Texcoco and San Salvador Atenco on 3 and 4 May 2006, women who have denounced their sexual torture firmly maintain their demands for justice.  Civil organizations indicate that the Federal Attorney General’s Office (PGR) and the State Attorney General’s Office of Mexico have impeded advances in the path toward justice for these women, and that due to the inefficacy of the internal institutions the case of 11 women finds itself presently before the Interamerican Commission on Human Rights (CIDH).

The police operative implemented in the state of Mexico in 2006 against the Popular Front in Defense of the Land (FPDT) in its struggle against the construction of an airport in Texcoco left two youth dead and 207 detained, of whom 47 were women.  Of the 47 women who were attacked, the National Commission on Human rights (CNDH) noted rape in 26 cases.  On this the fifth anniversary of the Atenco events, the Movement of Peoples in Defense of the Land, Amnesty International, and SME protested in front of the offices of the PGR to demand justice.

For more information (in Spanish):

Atenco, cinco años de resistencia frente a la tortura sexual, Cencos, 3 May 2011)

Atenco, a 5 años no se olvidan los excesos en el uso de la fuerza pública, El Universal, 3 May 2011

Víctimas de violación en Atenco se resisten a quedar en el olvido, cimacnoticas, 3 May

En Atenco prevalecen 5 años de impunidad, todotexcoco, 3 May 2011

A un lustro de hechos en Atenco, activistas exigen justicia frente a PGR, La Jornada, 2 May 2011

For more information from SIPAZ (in English):

Chiapas: Meeting “With Memory, the Peoples Build Justice and Truth” (25 March 2011)


Chiapas: Meeting “With Memory, the Peoples build Justice and Truth”

March 25, 2011

Forum “With Memory, the Peoples build Justice and Truth” (@SIPAZ)

On 16 and 17 March, in observation of the 22nd anniversary of the founding of the Fray Bartolomé de Las Casas Center for Human Rights (CDHFBC), there was held the meeting “With Memory, the Peoples build Justice and Truth” at the Indigenous Center for Integral Traning (CIDECI-Unitierra) in San Cristóbal de Las Casas. Some 150 women and men attended the event, hailing from different social and civil organizations from several states of the country, including Chiapas, Guerrero, Chihuahua, and Mexico City. The common thread of the event was the subject of the construction of memory, a process that according to those who participated should be carried out in a collective fashion so as to counter the false versions of history propagated by the economic and political elite of the country. “The construction of memory helps us to understand our journey from the past, to locate our presen tasks, and to define as to where we would like to go in the future,” explained one participant.

On the first day were held several panels dealing with different questions: impunity and new forms of constructing justice (Communal Police of Guerrero and the Civil Society Las Bejas of Acteal, from the highlands of Chiapas); the defense of Mother Earth (ejidatar@sfrom Atenco, state of Mexico; ejidatar@s from San Sebastián Bachajón, Northern Zone of Chiapas); concrete experience in the work of historical memory (community of Masojá Shucjá, Northern Zone of Chiapas); defenders of the right to expression (Center for the Rights of Women, state of Chihuahua and members of the Coordination of Women in Resistance in Jotolá, Chiapas).

There was also read a communiqué by Subcomandante Insurgente Marcos, in which he greeted in the CDHFBC for its 22nd anniversary and manifested his indignation as regards the behavior of “some idiots” (government functionaries) with regard to the burial of Samuel Ruiz García in January. Moreover he expressed his concern for the integrity and life of human-rights defenders in Mexico as well as respect for the members of the CDHFBC, who despite the risks implied by their work, nonetheless continue: “You could have been others, but you chose to be that which now brings you together.”

The final pronouncement, signed by the organizations and movements present, stresses the importance of memory in light of the tasks handed down by the past so as to maintain hope for the future: “Memory helps us to remember, brings to the present the disappeared, those who have been murdered, imprisoned, exiled. We do not forget the dirty war, State terrorism, or the counter-insurgency war; nor do we forget who it is that is responsible for impunity. Regardless, also in our memory are those individuals, peoples, and organizations who never give up, and it is this memory that converts itself into hope for future generations.” The organizations that signed the pronouncement proposed the following, among other things: “In light of the generalized violence imposed by the State, let us generate movements for peace and against war, and let us expand and recognize the participation of women, children, youth, and the elderly in the decisions governing collective life.”

For more information (in Spanish):

Pronunciamiento del encuentro “CON LA MEMORIA, LOS PUEBLOS CONSTRUIMOS JUSTICIA Y VERDAD” (17 March 2011)

Hermann Bellinghausen: “Empezó en Chiapas encuentro de activistas y defensores de derechos de todo el país” (17 March)

Palabras del EZLN a la XLI Asamblea Nacional de la Red Nacional de Organismos Civiles “ Todos los Derechos para Todas y Todos” (March 2011)


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