Chiapas: Those displaced from Banavil continue demanding justice

September 16, 2014

Desplazada de Banavil (@Koman Ilel)

On 4 September, Zapatista supporters from the Banavil region, Tenejapa municipality, newly denounced “the acts of 4 December 2011 when we were attacked with firearms and 13 of us displaced, being EZLN sympathizers, by PRI militants from the Banavil region, Tenejapa municipality.  On that day, our father Alonso López Luna was forcibly displaced and to date continues disappeared; the state and federal governments do nothing, nor does the Special Prosecutorial Office for Indigenous Justice.  Today, 4 September 2014, we mention that we continue to be displaced, and we denounce that we continue living in inhumane conditions.  We share with you our memory.”

Two years and nine months since the attack that led to their displacement, the displaced warned also about the plan that the government has to build a highway between San Cristobal and Palenque, passing through Banavil.  “This means that they will destroy our lands, and we do not know if for this reason they seek conflicts so that we confront ourselves in the same community.”

For more information (in Spanish):

En riesgo de perder sus tierras por autopista, denuncian desplazados de Banavil (Chiapas Paralelo, 8 de septiembre de 2014)

“Seguimos desplazadas, viviendo en condiciones inhumanas y compartimos con ustedes nuestra memoria”, Mujeres de Banavil Chiapas(Pozol colectivo, 5 de septiembre de 2014)

A dos años y nueve meses exigiendo justicia: Desplazadas de Banavil(Comunicado de las desplazadas, 4 de septiembre de 2014)

For more information from SIPAZ (in English):

Chiapas: Denunciation from and announcement of action on part of the displaced from Banavil and the Aurora Ermita ejido(10 April 2014)

Chiapas: Two years after the attack in Banavil, displacement and forced disappearance live on,” CDHFBC (9 December 2013)

Chiapas: Public denunciation from those displaced from Banavil (16 September 2013)

Chiapas: The displaced of Banavil, Tenejapa in “precarious and inhumane conditions” (8 April 2013)


National/Chiapas: CNI and General Command of the EZLN demand release of Mario Luna

September 16, 2014

Foto de archivo @ SIPAZ

On 14 September, the National Indigenous Congress (CNI) and the Revolutionary Clandestine Indigenous Committee-General Command of the EZLN publicly pronounced themselves in favor of the release of Mario Luna, a spokesperson from the Yaqui people in the state of Sonora, who was arrested on 11 September, “falsely accused of crimes that were fabricated [against him]; with this, they seek to arrest the very struggle of the Yaqui tribe to defend the waters that in 1940 were recognized as theirs by Lázaro Cárdenas following a long war, and that since 2010 owners of capital have sought to take away from them by means of the Independence aqueduct.”  The two groups denounced that said aqueduct “is said to be constructed so that the poor have water and progress, as those from above call it, but [in fact] it is so that the rich take away the water that for centuries has belonged to the Yaquis.  Instead of irrigating crops, they want to take it for the large industries in Sonora.”

For the CNI and the General Command, the developmentalist megaprojects are a threat to the lives of indigenous peoples, given that “they want to kill us with wind-energy plants, highways, mines, dams, airports, and drug-trafficking; today, above all, it hurts us that they want to kill us in Sonora with aqueducts.”  For this reason, they demanded “the immediate release of Mario Luna; we call for the cancellation of all arrest-orders against him and the fabrication of charges against members of the Yaqui tribe and, together with this, we demand the release of all our prisoners and particularly that of our Nahua brothers Juan Carlos Flores Solís and Enedina Rosas Vélez, who have been imprisoned by the bad government since April, similarly accused falsely of fabricated crimes, toward the end of halting the struggle of the Front of Peoples in Defense of Water and Land in Morelos, Puebla, and Tlaxcala against the comprehensive infrastructural project for Morelos.”

Beyond this, the Network against Repression and for Solidarity identified Sonoran Governor Guillermo Padrés and President Enrique Peña Nieto as responsible for the health and safety of Mario Luna: “We hold them responsible for any repressive act that is taken against the Yaquis.  Above all, we call on our comrades from this network, the Sixth, who feel this attack as your own to express your solidarity by protesting and pronouncing yourselves according to your means and forms in favor of the liberty of our comrade Mario Luna and against this attack on the Yaqui people.”

For more information (in Spanish):

Pronunciamiento del CNI y el EZLN por la libertad de Mario Luna, vocero de la tribu yaqui (Enlace Zapatista, 14 de septiembre de 2014)

RvsR: ¡Libertad a Mario Luna! (Enlace Zapatista, 13 de septiembre de 2014)

For more information from SIPAZ (in English):

Chiapas: EZLN and members of the CNI united against the plundering of their peoples (29 August 2014)


Chiapas: Ejidatarios from Candelaria express their opposition to the construction of the San Cristóbal-Palenque highway

September 16, 2014

Conferencia de prensa del Ejido Candelaria, septiembre de 2014 (@SiPAZ)

In a press-conference held on 11 September in the offices of the Fray Bartolomé de Las Casas Center for Human Rights, ejidiatari@s from Candelaria, San Cristóbal de Las Casas municipality, made public their opposition to the planned construction of the highway between San Cristóbal de Las Casas and Palenque, with this being a decision agreed to in their communal assembly.

The ejidatarios denounced acts of pressure, harassment, and death-threats on the part of governmental authorities to make the assembly accept the passage of the highway through its lands.  On 23 June, governmental representative Javier López Ramírez came to announce that “the highway would pass” through the other communities that had already signed the accord, but the ejidatarios investigated this claim to find out that it was false.  They affirmed that “the comrades from Chilon told [us] that the government used the same strategy with them and that it was not true.”

The ejidatarios expressed that “elders, women, men, children, communities, and organizations will join together to see what can be done as people against this project,” and they invited the communities to a Meeting in Defense of Mother Earth to coordinate resistance on 17 September at 11am in Laguna Suyul, Candelaria.

For more information (in Spanish):

Vídeo de la conferencia Ejido La Candelaria: “No a la autopista San Cristóbal – Palenque (Koman Ilel, 11 de septiembre de 2014)

Candelaria: Los pueblos originarios en contra el megaproyecto de autopista en Chiapas (Espoir Chiapas, 11 de septiembre de 2014)

For more information from SIPAZ (in English):

Chiapas: An assembly of Tzeltal communities from Chilón municipality reject the SCLC-Palenque highway (9 September 2014)

Chiapas: Los Llanos and San José El Porvenir reject passage of highway from San Cristóbal to Palenque through their communities (14 February 2014)


Chiapas: Impunity in the case of Tatiana Trujillo; continued calls for gender alert amidst rise in number of femicides

September 16, 2014

Conferencia de prensa sobre el caso Tatiana (@SIPAZ)

On 9 September, a press-conference was held at which relatives of Tatiana Trujillo Rodríguez denounced the impunity seen in the femicide perpetrated against her in April 2010 in the Ocosingo municipality by her partner, Elmar Darinel Díaz Solórzano, a former federal deputy.  A sentence released against his person in June of this year condemns him to a imprisonment of at least 25 years and the payment of 43,041.10 pesos as compensation, in addition to calling for his arrest.  Nonetheless, he remains at large.

The Fray Bartolomé de Las Casas Center for Human Rights manifested its “indignation regarding the impunity in the femicide committed against Tatiana, a mother of three children who, next to her family, has not her damages fully compensated.  We consider the judicial system of the state of Chiapas to be responsible in its actions, omissions, and acquiescence in not guaranteeing access to justice for victims.”

During the same press-conference, activists from the Popular Campaign against Violence against Women and Femicide in Chiapas denounced that 65% of the 221 violent deaths of women that have occurred in the state since 2012 have been femicides, and that 24 femicides have been registered in the state so far this year.  They challenged the Mexican government for having refused to declare a gender alert as a means of supporting the prevention of violence against women, despite the calls that have been made toward this end in Chiapas since November 2013.

Martha Figueroa Mier indicated that the National System to Prevent, Attend, Sanction, and Eradicate Violence against Women has not supported the call for a gender alert, which has been submitted in light of the nearly 200 violent murders of women, 65% of which have been characterized as femicides, claiming that these “have not disturbed the social peace of the state.”  She indicated that the Campaign won a legal motion over attacks and human-rights violations of women in Chiapas and the country as a whole that among other things orders the National System to reinstate the session.

For more information (in Spanish):

Familia de Tatiana Trujillo, víctima de feminicidio, exige detención de Elmar Darinel Díaz Solórzano (Testimonio de la familia Trujillo, 9 de septiembre de 2014)

Boletín de prensa de la Campaña Popular Permanente contra la Violencia a las Mujeres y el Feminicidio en Chiapas (9 de septiembre de 2014)

Boletín: Feminicidio de Tatiana Trujillo Rodríguez en Impunidad (Centro de Derechos Humanos Fray Bartolomé de Las Casas, 9 de septiembre de 2014)

El 65% de 221 muertes violentas de mujeres del 2012 al 2014 han sido feminicidios, denuncian (Chiapas Paralelo, 10 de diciembre de 2014)

For more information from SIPAZ (in English):

Chiapas: State complicity in femicide is denounced (2 May 2014)

Chiapas: Commemoration of the murder of Itzel Janet Méndez-Pérez and other victims of femicide (26 April 2014)

Chiapas: Amidst increase in femicide and impunity, civil organization proclaims permanent Gender Alert (30 March 2014)

National: Multiple activities for International Women’s Day (16 March 2014)


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: XI National Meeting of the Mexican Movement of Those Affected by Dams and in Defense of Rivers (MAPDER) in Olintla, Puebla

September 15, 2014

Marcha en Olintla, Puebla (@Boca de Polen)

From 29 to 31 August, the XI National Meeting of the Mexican Movement of Those Affected by Dams and in Defense of Rivers (MAPDER) took place in Olintla municipality, Puebla, with the participation of more than 600 persons pertaining to 80 organizations hailing from the states of Puebla, Chiapas, Tabasco, Guerrero, Oaxaca, Veracruz, Nayarit, Jalisco, Colima, Mexico City, Mexico State, and Coahuila, as well as other countries.  At the event, participants share their experiences, struggles, and dreams.

In the final Declaration, conference-participants denounced that, “since the [time of the] approval of the structural reforms promoted by the government of Enrique Peña Nieto, [...] we have confronted a meticulous and systematic dismantling of all the legal mechanisms used by the people in defense of their lands.  The right to consultation, communal property in land, free municipalities, the–already weak–environmental regulations: all of this has been weakened so as to open the door to investment in megaprojects.”  They warned that “to close the pincer-grasp of the counter-reforms that have battered the country for three decades, the government of Peña Nieto is preparing to place the cherry on the cake with the announced agrarian reform, which seeks to consolidate the plan to plunder campesino lands begun in 1992 by Carlos Salinas de Gortari. Amidst this latest attempt to attack our rights, they have said that they come for our lands and territories.  We tell them: ‘Here we await you.  You will not pass!'”

Conference-goers also indicated that the government “employs all power in the security forces and military to repress communal defenders and to demobilize struggle by criminalizing social protest [...].  The murder of Noé Vázquez, the illegal arrest of our comrade in struggle Marco Antonio Suástegui (CECOP), [and] the imposition of arrest-orders against dozens of MAPDER members are demonstrations of the war strategy to loot our peoples.”

They closed by stressing that “we will continue to advance our own communal ways of life, and we struggle for an alternative energy project in Mexico and Latin America.”

For more information (in Spanish):

Declaración de Olintla y Acuerdos del XI Encuentro Nacional del MAPDER(MAPDER, 31 de agosto de 2014)

El rechazo a reformas, entre las demandas del Mapder (La Jornada de Oriente, 3 de septiembre de 2014)

Audio de Boca de Polen: http://bocadepolen.org/web/?p=12994

For more information from SIPAZ (in English):

Mexico: Murder of MAPDER member in Veracruz (20 August 2013)

National: IX National Intercultural Meeting of MAPDER in Presidio de los Reyes (15 October 2013)

Chiapas: Regional Forum in Defense of the Land, the Territory and Natural Resources held in Ejido Costa Rica, frontier municipality of Comalapa (9 March 2011)

Chiapas: pilgrimage against “death projects” (3 December 2010)


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)


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