Chiapas: Denunciation by Alejandro Díaz Santis from the San Cristóbal de Las Casas jail

March 30, 2014


On 18 March, Alejandro Díaz Santis, a member in solidarity with the “Voz del Amate” and adherent to the Sixth Declaration of the Lacandona Jungle of the EZLN who is held in CERESO no. 5 in San Cristóbal de las Casas, denounced abuse directed against prisoners as administered by the new director of the prison, Juan Jose Trujillo Cruz.

He mentioned in particular that visits by relatives and friends have been denied, “that the medical area lacks medications and even basic goods such as alcohol for sterilizing purposes,” and that corruption has been rampant since the new director’s arrival.

Para más información:

Denuncia Alejandro Díaz Santiz al director del Ceress5 (CGT, 20 de marzo de 2014)

Empeora el trato dado a los internos de la cárcel estatal de San Cristóbal de Las Casas (La Jornada, 26 de marzo de 2014)

Para más información de SIPAZ:

Chiapas: Alejandro Díaz Santis announces fast to demand freedom (15 January 2014)

National: Patishtán requests that Peña Nieto release all prisoners who are unjustly imprisoned (9 December 2013)

Chiapas: 9 prisoners in solidarity with the Voz del Amate released, but Patishtán will remain imprisoned (20 July 2013)

Chiapas: 25-year anniversary of “Frayba”

March 30, 2014

25 Aniversario del Frayba, marzo de 2014 (@SIPAZ)

25th anniversary of Frayba, March de 2014 (@SIPAZ)

On 19 March, the Fray Bartolomé de las Casas Center for Human Rights (CDHFBC, better known as Frayba) celebrated 25 years since its founding.  Created in 1989 through the invitation of the then bishop of the the San Cristóbal de San Cristóbal diocese, Samuel Ruíz García, it in time passed into becoming a key reference for the defense of human rights, particularly of indigenous peoples, at the local, national, and international levels.

Part of the celebrations included the organization of an “International forum on human rights: from memory to hope,” which was attended by more than 350 persons, nationals and internationals.  On 18 March, the book The Social Evangelism of Bishop Raúl Vera was presented by the very bishop himself, who previously had worked with Samuel Ruiz in Chiapas and who now holds the presidency of the CDHFBC.

At the press-conference and ceremony which closed the events, the members of the CDHFBC recognized the difficulties and challenges implied for example by the advance of extractive industry and touristic projects in Chiapas, ina ddition to the attempts to loot territory, but they stressed that “it is the people who guide our path, in a positive feedback loop.”

For more information (in English):

Destaca obispo Raúl Vera, la creación del Frayba por don Samuel Ruiz(Chiapas Paralelo, 20 de marzo de 2014)

Sin traicionar el legado de Samuel Ruiz, celebra el Frayba su 25 aniversario(Proceso, 19 de marzo de 2014)

El Frayba celebra su 25 aniversario (La Jornada, 19 de marzo de 2014)

“Lo que no se vale aquí es no caminar… caminemos”: Samuel Ruiz García(Chiapas Paralelo, 18 de marzo de 2014)

Sitio Web del 25 aniversario:

Facebook: frayba.derechoshumanos

For more information from SIPAZ (in English):

Chiapas: Presentation of the six-year report from the Fray Bartolomé de las Casas Center for Human Rights (26 March 2013)

Chiapas: Denunciation from San Sebastián Bachajón regarding maneuvers to formalize looting of ejidal territory for touristic ends

March 15, 2014


( archive)

On 4 March, ejidatarios from San Sebastián Bachajón, Chilón municipality, adherents to the Sixth Declaration of the Lacandona Jungle, denounced by means of a communique that the officialist commissioner “continues to trick the people of San Sebastián Bachajón with false promises because he requests their signature and copy of certification of agrarian rights in exchange for crumbs, saying that he will arrange a coffee project with the government, but this is a lie because he is just collecting signatures and agrarian documents to carry out an assembly act from the ejidatarios to request that the Seventh Judge of the District in Tuxtla Gutierrez cancel our motion 274/2011 which yesterday on 3 March completed 3 years of existence.  [This is something] the bad government has not been able to negate, due to the organization of our people.”

The ejidatarios affirmed that “our organization will not allow the officialist ejidal authorities to continue looting our people in alliance with the bad government.  Since 2007 the bad government has intervened in the internal life of our community to impose ejidal representatives who serve it as though they were horse dealers so as to protect capitalist interests rather than those of the indigenous people […[.  These false representatives are accomplices of the bad government; they steal from the people and seek to repress our organization using prison and murder.”

For more information (in Spanish):

Comisariado ejidal de Bachajón engaña a tzeltales para despojarlos de sus tierras (La Jornada, 6 de marzo de 2014)

Denuncia de los ejidatarios de San Sebastián Bachajón (4 de marzo de 2014)

For more information from SIPAZ (in English):

Chiapas: Release of Miguel Demeza and Antonio Estrada from the San Sebastián Bachajón ejido (1 January 2013)

Chiapas: Federal court resolves in favor of ejidatarios from San Sebastián Bachajón (8 December 2013)

Chiapas: release of Miguel Vázquez Deara, adherent to the Sixth Declaration from the San Sebastián Bachajón ejido (19 July 2013)

Chiapas: Close of Global Campaign “Juan Vázquez Lives, the Struggle Continues!” (20 July 2013)

Chiapas: Ejidatarios of San Sebastián Bachajón recall Juan Vázquez, murdered in April (19 July 2013)

Chiapas: Adherents to the Other Campaign in San Sebastián Bachajón denounce looting and impunity (22 April 2013)

Chiapas: Threat to displace residents of Bachajón (14 November 2013)

Chiapas: Presentation of new EZLN magazine

March 2, 2014

Portada de la revista "Rebeldía Zapatista"Cover of magazine “Rebeldía Zapatista”

As had been announced in the previous communique made by the Zapatista Army of National Liberation (EZLN) “Bad and not so bad news” (November 2013), the “Zapatista Rebelliousness” magazine has been born, as directed and written by indigenous Zapatistas.

In the first volume, an editorial signed by Subcomandante Insurgente Moisés presents the magazine: “We have spent 30 years constructing how to think and live better, this before the people of Mexico and of the world.  Humble but sanely  the autonomous way we want to govern ourselves has been decided by thousands of women and men.  There is nothing hidden in what we are doing or what we seek and desire; instead it is there for everyone to see [...].  We are sharing with our comrades from Mexico and the world our humble thought of a new world we desire and think about.”

The magazine also features more reviews of the Zapatista Escuelita from BAEZLN themselves: “In this first volume we will begin to share the words and thoughts of our comrade Zapatista support bases, families, guardians, teachers, on how they see the Escuelita that we have been presenting, and also how they saw the student comrades.”  With reference to anarchists, Subcomandante Insurgente Moisés notes that “there are other brothers and sisters who are rebels and not indigenous who can write and share in this medium, so as to share how it is that they think and how they see this system that desires to put an end to planet Earth.  For this reason, in this volume we share some words provided by anarchist comrades.”

For more information (in English):

Nace nueva publicación del EZLN (Desinformémonos, 28 de febrero de 2014)

Editorial. Rebeldía Zapatista. La palabra del EZLN (Enlace Zapatista, 28 de febrero de 2014)

Malas y no tan malas noticias (Enlace Civil, noviembre de 2013)

For more information from SIPAZ (in English):

Chiapas: Celebration of 20 years since the Zapatista uprising (15 January 2014)

Chiapas/National: “Rebobinar 2: On Death and other excuses” (1 January 2014)

Chiapas: New communique from Subcomandante Marcos, Rebobine 3 (7 December 2013)

Chiapas: EZLN criticizes structural reforms (13 November 2013)

Chiapas: Tens of thousands of Zapatistas mobilize themselves in 5 cities (27 December 2012)

National/International: End of solidarity week “If the Zapatistas are harmed, all are harmed”

March 2, 2014

Imagen @ Red contra la Represión

From 16 to 23 February there was held the National and International Week of Solidarity “If one Zapatista is harmed, all are harmed” as organized by adherents to the Sixth Declaration of the Lacandona Jungle.  During these days were celebrated different activities in different parts of Mexico, Europe, North America, and New Zealand, all to express solidarity with Zapatista support bases (BAEZLN).

“Oftentimes power has attempted without success to provoke and destroy the organization and project of the Zapatistas, using military overflights or invasion, looting of land, introduction of social programs in Zapatista territory, fabrication of crimes, robbery, arbitrary arrest, and paramilitary attacks,” the adherents noted in a communique.

The week of solidarity was a response to the recent attacks on the 10 April ejido, as denounced by the Heart of the Rainbow of Hope Good-Government Council, as was expressed in the organizing call for the week: “The criminal group of the Center of Agricultural and Campesino Workers (CIOAC) together with the Regional Organization of Coffee Cultivators of Ocosingo (ORCAO) left six Zapatista comrades gravely injured, and they harassed and robbed personnel from the San Carlos hospital.”

For more information (in Spanish):

RvsR: Semana Nacional e Internacional de Solidaridad “Si tocan a l@s zapatistas, nos tocan a tod@s” (Enlace Zapatista, 13 de febrero de 2014)

Actividades de la Semana Nacional e Internacional de Solidaridad “Si tocan a l@s zapatistas, nos tocan a tod@s” (Enlace Zapatista, 20 de febrero de 2014)

For more information from SIPAZ (in English):

Chiapas: Denunciations of attacks on BAEZLN from the Morelia JBG and on hospital personnel from San Carlos de Altamirano (7 February 2014)

Chiapas: Denunciation of harassment and attacks from the Whirlwind of Our Words Caracol (7 December 2013)


Chiapas: 18 años years after the signing of the San Andrés Accords on Indigenous Rights and Culture, these continue not to be recognized by the State

March 1, 2014

Comisión del EZLN en los Acuerdos de San Andrés

On 16 February 18 years passed since the signing of the San Andrés Accords on Indigenous Rights and Culture between the federal government and the Zapatista Army of National Liberation (EZLN), within the context of the Law on Dialogue, Negotiation, and Dignified Peace in Chiapas.

The signing of the accords in the Tsotsil community of San Andrés Larráinzar or Sak´am Ch´en De Los Pobres was the result of a process of negotiations and dialogues which began in October 1995 and ended in February 1996 in which particiapted different actors from Mexican civil society, including the National Commission on Mediation (CONAI), presided over by bishop Samuel Ruíz, and the Commission for Concordance and Pacification (COCOPA), comprised of legislators from the federal and state congresses.

By signing the accords, the federal government committed itself to constitutionally recognize the indigenous peoples by means of the creation of a new juridical system that would guarantee the political representation of the indigenous at the local and national levels, the right for the indigenous to organize and rule themselves according to their own customs, their right to develop their own alternatives to economic development and production, and the right for them to preserve their own cultural identity.  In sum, the agreement recognized the indigenous peoples of Mexico as public participants with the capacity of organizing themselves autonomously.

In November 1996, the COCOPA presented the Proposal for Constitutional Reforms in terms of Indigenous Rights and Culture as a continuation of the agreements made in San Andrés. Though some of the aspects originally agreed to were missing in this new version, the EZLN accepted the proposed document.

In December 2000, the PAN government of Vicente Fox submitted the law to the federal congress.

In 2001, the federal senate approved the constitutional reform on indigenous affairs, with the majority vote from the deputies of the principal political parties (PAN, PRI, PRD), though this did not include that which was agreed to in San Andrés. The reform stressed the effective exercise of rights, defining indigenous communities as public-interest entities instead of public-right entities, with the latter being a stipulation from the San Andrés Accords.  In this way was it denied to the indigenous to participate autonomously and collectively in the decision-making structures of the political and juridical institutions of the Mexican State, thus limiting their ability to organize autonomously in accordance with their own uses and customs.

In response to the reform, both the National Indigenous Congress (CNI) and the EZLN rejected the approved law, considering it to be a treason from the political parties toward the indigenous, and dialogue with the government was broken off until such time as the San Andrés Accords be included within the Mexican constitution as stipulated in the COCOPA Law.

Lastly, in December 2013, Jaime Martínez Veloz, commissioner for Dialogue with Indigenous Peoples, announced that the Secretary of Governance would present in early 2014 a legal initiative that rescues the content of the  San Andrés Accords and would serve to reactivate the dialogue which had been suspended since 2001 between the Zapatistas and the government. For Martínez Veloz, the legislative reforms in indigenous affairs from 2001 did not resolve “the problems of the indigenous peoples in a profound way.”

For more information (in Spanish):

Los Acuerdos de San Andrés, pacto inédito entre los pueblos indios de México, cumplen 18 años de vigencia (Desinformémonos, febrero de 2014)

Acuerdos de San Andrés. A veinte años del alzamiento (Mirada Sur, febrero de 2014)

Acuerdos de San Andrés: avatares internacionales (La Jornada, 11 de febrero de 2014)

A 18 años de los Acuerdos de San Andrés (Chiapas Paralelo, 17 de febrero de 2014)

Peña prepara ley que retoma los acuerdos de San Andrés (ADN Político, 31 de diciembre de 2013)

Para más información de SIPAZ:

Chiapas: new governor calls for observance of San Andrés Accords (8 January 2013)

National: Reactions by state and federal governments to the Zapatista mobilization of 21 December (27 December 2012)

Chiapas: Denunciation of attacks on BAEZLN from the Morelia JBG and on hospital personnel from San Carlos de Altamirano

February 7, 2014

Mural en Caracol IV, Torbellino de Nuestras Palabras @ SIPAZ

Mural in Caracol IV (Morelia), Whirlwind of Our Words @ SIPAZ

The Good-Government Council (JBG) from Caracol IV (Morelia), Whirlwind of Our Words, has denounced that on 30 January, some 300 members of the Democratic Independent Center of Agricultural and Campesino Workers (CIOAC) traveled on 18 trucks and severely assaulted Zapatista support bases in the 10 April ejido, pertaining to the 17 November autonomous municipality.  The Zapatistas requested aid at the San Carlos hospital in Altamirano, but the aggressors arrested them and blocked the passage of the ambulance, stripped and assaulted the nuns in the vehicle, and themselves appropriated the ambulance and a truck).  The Fray Bartolome de Las Casas Center for Human Rights documented the status of the injured, noting “two grave lesions and three hospitalizations, one of them facing the possibility of losing sight,” as the Center shared in its third press release.  “In addition, [there were] attacks and arrests of four personnel who work in the San Carlos hospital.  With regard to the aggressor group, there were 2 injured from the 20 November community who were hospitalized in the Mexican Institute of Social Security (IMSS) in Altamirano and released the same day.”

The most recent attack against BAEZLN in 10 April community had taken place on 27 January, when 250 members of the Democratic CIOAC destroyed the signposts at the entrance of the ejido and proceeded to take down trees “which belong to our ecological reserve,” noted the JBG, using five vehicles: 9 pines were lost, in addition to 40 oak trees, 35 coffee plants, and 3 banana trees.  Furthermore, the attackers removed firewood “that is not for familial use but that was taken to sell, as carried away in 41 trucks’ worth.”

The CIOAC’s attempt to take over Zapatista lands began to spin out of control on 13 November 2013, although 2007 was the first time that “they provoked us by threatening to take the land we recovered in 1994,” as they “wanted to take control,” according to the JBG.

For more information (in Spanish):

La Junta de Buen Gobierno, Corazón del Arco Iris de la Esperanza del Caracol IV, denuncia la agresión que sufrió bases de apoyo del ejido 10 de abril del municipio autónomo en rebeldía 17 de noviembre, Chiapas, México(Enlace Zapatista, 1 de febrero de 2014)

Testimonio de personal del hospital San Carlos con respecto a la agresión a compañeros del ejido 10 de abril, ocurrida el 30 de enero de 2014 (Enlace Zapatista, 1 de febrero de 2014)

Omisión del gobierno del Estado de Chiapas para impedir agresiones a las BAEZLN. La CIOAC violenta el territorio del EZLN (Boletín de prensa No.3 del Centro de Derechos Humanos Fray Bartolomé de Las Casas, 2 de febrero de 2014)

Denuncian agresiones a bases de apoyo del EZLN por seguidores de la Cioac(La Jornada, 2 de febrero de 2014)

Agreden a religiosas en el ataque al ejido 10 de Abril; les impiden atender a heridos (La Jornada, 3 de febrero de 2014)

Miembros de la CIOAC Democrática agreden a bases de apoyo zapatistas(Koman Ilel, 2 de febrero de 2014)

La JBG CORAZON DEL ARCO IRIS DE LA ESPERANZA CARACOL IV, TORBELLINO DE NUESTRAS PALABRAS denuncia hostigamiento y agresiones (Enlace Zapatista, 13 de noviembre de 2014)

Para más información de SIPAZ:

Chiapas: Denunciation of harassment and attacks from the Whirlwind of Our Words Caracol (7 December 2013)

Mexico: Death of activist Kuykendall, injured during the police operation to repress protests against the inauguration of President Enrique Peña Nieto

February 5, 2014

© foto

© Photo

The activist, professor, and dramatist Juan Francisco Kuykendall Leal (68 years of age) died during the morning of 25 January 2014 in a Mexico City hospital.  He had been injured during the protests which took place on 1 December 2012 to resist the inauguration of President Enrique Peña Nieto.  The impact of the rubber-coated bullet which hit Kuykendall caused him a cranial fracture and, though he received surgical intervention, his state did not improve and he remained in a coma until 25 January, when he died.

His lawyer Bárbara Zamora affirmed that the case is a demonstration of the absolute lack of justice suffered by victims, for to date no one has been incarcerated nor has there even been an investigation of any police agent for what happened during the protests of 1 December 2012.

Amnesty International (AI) has demanded that the corresponding authorities engage in a “complete and impartial investigation” into the death of the activist, in addition to the “the other abuses committed during 1 December 2012, so as to guarantee that those responsible be brought before justice.”  AI stressed that this would be especially important “amidst the increase in number of abuses committed against protestors by police forces that has been registered in Mexico in the last 18 months, including arbitrary arrests and police brutality.”

For more information (in Spanish):

MP califica como homicidio la muerte del activista Kuykendall, Proceso, 27de enero de 2014

Muere el activista Kuykendall, herido en el operativo policiaco del 1º de diciembre de 2012, La Jornada, 26 de enero de 2014

Fallece manifestante del #1DMX que estuvo más de un año en coma, Proceso,  25 de enero de 2014

For more information from SIPAZ (in English):

Nacional: Polemical ascension of EPN, 7 December 2012

Chiapas: Alejandro Díaz Santis announces fast to demand freedom

January 15, 2014


On 11 January, the prisoner Alejandro Díaz Santis, adherent to the Sixth Declaration of the Lacandona Jungle and a member in “Solidarity with the Voz del Amate” who is being held in Cereso no. 5 in San Cristóbal de Las Casas, published a communique upon completing half of his prison sentence.  He mentions that “due to the injustices and for being poor and indigenous, I was and remain incarcerated unjustly since 11 May 1999.  Today, 11 January 2014, I have spent 14 years and 8 months covering 50% of my sentence, which amounts to 29 years and 6 months.  It is for this reason that today I will fast and pray for 12 hours daily over the course of 4 days, requesting that God give me strength and wisdom to continue on with my struggle.  In this way I call on President Enrique Peña Nieto and Veracruz Governor Javier Duarte to take account of my case, given that the evidence is plagued with irregularities.  I request justice be done.  Lastly, I call on my comrades brothers and sisters to continue demanding true justice and liberty always.”

For more information (in Spanish):

Alejandro Díaz Santís anuncia ayuno por su libertad (Chiapas Denuncia, 13 de enero de 2014)

For more information from SIPAZ (in English):

National: Patishtán requests that Peña Nieto release all prisoners who are unjustly imprisoned (9 December 2013)

Chiapas: 9 prisoners in solidarity with the Voz del Amate released, but Patishtán will remain imprisoned (20 July 2013)

Chiapas: Celebration of 20 years since the Zapatista uprising

January 15, 2014

Año nuevo en Caracol III Resistencia hacia un nuevo amanecer @ SIPAZ

New year’s in Caracol III Resistance until a new dawn @ SIPAZ

On 31 December 2013 and 1 January 2014, the Zapatista Army of National Liberation (EZLN) celebrated its twenty-year anniversary of resistance since its insurrection on 1 January 1994, which demanded land, food, work, health, education, housing, justice, and equality for indigenous peoples.  The uprising coincided with the entrance into law of the North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA).  There were celebrations in the five caracoles, with sports games, dance, and food.  At 12am, the Mexican and Zapatista flags were presented, while both anthems were sung, as followed by the reading of a communique which mentioned those who are not present, such as Subcomandante Pedro and Comandanta Ramona; as each name was read, a “presente” could be heard cried out.

20 years since its armed uprising, the EZLN spoke to its successes.  With regard to health, for example, the Zapatistas have constructed four regional hospitals staffed with surgeons, some of them specializing in reproductive and sexual health, in addition to dozens of municipal clinics, and it estimated that more than 1100 widwives and 1500 herbalists have been trained in this period.

“20 years ago we threw the political parties into the trashcan.  We are trying to improve our health, educational, and governmental systems.  We know that much remains to be done, but we also know that our struggle will continue,” read Comandanta Hortensia in Caracol II Resistance and Rebellion for Humanity.  She added: “We exist and continue here.  20 years ago we had nothing, no system or educational systems based in the people.  There was no governmental authority of the people.  Now we have our own autonomous governments.  Whether it be good or bad, it has been based on the will of the people.”

The bishop from Saltillo, Raúl Vera, indicated that “the rendering visible of the demands and needs of the indigenous peoples of the country who have been among the most marginalized sectors in historical terms has perhaps been the greatest contribution made by the Zapatista Army of National Liberation (EZLN), whose social and political proposals have transformed Mexico and continue to be relevant, though this group does not for the moment dominate the media’s attention.”  With the public appearance of the EZLN in January 1994, the conscience was awakened that “we Mexicans cannot continue being inactive.  We learned from our indigenous brothers [and sisters] that democracy cannot be attained without efforts and sacrifices, that we will not get out of this if we do not move ourselves from the base, as they have done.”

For more information (in Spanish):

Dar a conocer necesidades indígenas, principal aportación zapatista: Vera(La Jornada, 2 de diciembre de 2014)

Los combates duraron 12 días; la lucha sigue (La Jornada, 31 de diciembre de 2013)

Lanza EZLN nuevo llamado a la rebeldía (Proceso, 1 de enero de 2014)

EZLN gobierna a 250 mil indígenas (Red política, 2 de enero de 2014)

El Ya basta! en América Latina (La Jornada, 27 de diciembre de 2013)

For more information from SIPAZ (in English):

Chiapas: Tens of thousands of Zapatistas mobilize themselves in 5 cities (27 December 2012)

Chiapas: Communiqué by the EZLN: For reflective criticism, individuals and collectives (15 April 2011)


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