Guerrero: Presentation of the Observation Mission Report “A light against impunity”

April 10, 2014

Misión de Observación a Guerrero, febrero de 2014 (@SIPAZ)

Observation mission to Guerrero, February 2014 (@SIPAZ)

On 2 April, members of the Observation Mission on human rights that was carried out in Guerrero last February presented a report at a press-conference which details the main results of the mission.  The members recalled that Guerrero finds itself in a phase of social disaster and that 13 social activists were murdered in 2013, without a single one of these cases being clarified to date.  The report indicates that “passing through the state of Guerrero, where there is a permanent persecution of human-rights defenders, social activists, and those who have the courage to denounce and to defend, confirms that the Mexican State criminalizes action that expresses solidarity with victims of injustice, [that] makes denunciations, and that defends just causes.”

During the presentation of the report, José Rosario Marroquin, director of the Prodh Center, stressed that although a handful of cases have had media coverage, the general situation in the state is a “palpable demonstration of the great lack which Mexico suffers from in terms of human rights.”

The members of the Mission made eight recommendations to the Mexican State, including the “cessation of security policies based in the militarization of public and communal spaces,” as well as putting an end to the policies of criminalization of communal police, social activists, and human-rights defenders.  The Mission also demanded respect for international agreements such as Convention 169 of the International Labor Organization (ILO) and called for social demands to be attended to and resolved by the authorities.

For more information (in Spanish):

Piden respeto a los derechos humanos en comunidades guerrerenses(Centro ProDH, 3 de abril de 2014)

Piden a Peña no criminalizar a policías comunitarias de Guerrero (Proceso, 2 de abril de 2014)

Piden cesar la criminalización de los disidentes sociales en el estado (La Jornada de Guerrero, 2 de abril de 2014)

Informe de la Misión de Observación a los Derechos Humanos al estado de Guerrero (abril de 2014)

For more information from SIPAZ (in English):

Guerrero: Caravan “A light against impunity” ends in Acapulco after visiting Ayutla de Los Libres (14 February 2014)

Guerrero: Beginning of Civil Observation Mission “A light against impunity”(14 February 2014)

Guerrero/National: Network Solidarity Decade against Impunity denounces intimidation against two members days before Observation Mission to Guerrero (5 February 2014)


National: Activities held to observe the third anniversary of the Movement for Peace

April 10, 2014

Tercer Aniversario del MPJD, Ciudad de México (@Uriah Samuel)

Third anniversary of the MPJD, Mexico City (@Uriah Samuel)

At the end of March, there were held several activities to commemorate the third anniversary of the emergence of the Movement for Peace with Justice and Dignity (MPJD, which brings together victims and relatives of the disappeared and murdered by organized crime and State security forces). At the Monument of Light–or the Monument to Peace–in Paseo de la Reforma in Mexico City, relatives of victims carried banners with the names of their loved ones which they then put on display at the monument.  “For historical and moral reasons,” the MPJD changed the name of the Gustavo Díaz Ordaz Boulevard to 28 March Boulevard.

It should be recalled that the MPJD was created on this day following the murder of the son of the poet Javier Sicilia, the founder of the MPJD.  Since then, the writer has led several caravans in Mexico and the United States together with relatives of victims.

On this third anniversary, Sicilia assured that despite the government’s promises, “we continue in the middle of a war, with the disappearances, the murders, the kidnappings, the extortion, and the memory of the victims totally erased.”  He furthermore denounced that the State criminalizes self-defense groups: “The form in which they have been managing Michoacán is a true travesty.  I ask the authorities: whom do you serve? Because to us it is far from clear.  It seems to us to be the criminalization of people they had previously recognized; now they betray them.”

For more information (in Spanish):

El Movimiento por la Paz acusa que el gobierno criminaliza a autodefensas(CNN México, 27 de marzo de 2014)

Conmemoran aniversario de multihomicidio en Morelos (El Universal, 28 de marzo de 2014)

Movimiento por la Paz: terco como la memoria (Desinformémonos, marzo de 2014)

Galería de fotos (marzo de 2014)

For more information from SIPAZ (in English):

National: Commemoration of two years of the MPJD (8 April 2013)


Chiapas: Denunciation from and announcement of action on part of the displaced from Banavil and the Aurora Ermita ejido

April 10, 2014

Conferencia de prensa, 31 de marzo de 2014 (@CDHFBC)

Press conference, 31 March 2014 (@CDHFBC)

On 31 March there was held a press conference which featured the displaced from Banavil (Tenejapa municipality) and from the Aurora Ermita ejido (Pueblo Nuevo Solistahuacán municipality), as well as representatives from the Coordination Table for the Defense of Human Rights.  They denounced the conditions of displacement which they currently suffer, and in light of the lack of responses from the authorities, they reported that on 4 April 2014 they would hold a march in San Cristóbal de Las Casas to demand their rights.

In the Banavil case, they denounced that “nearly a month after Alonso Guzmán López was imprisoned, the PRI is threatening relatives of the displaced by fabricating crimes so as to return them to prison because they supposedly have contact with governmental officials who sell themselves to incarcerate innocent persons.  Meanwhile, ten arrest orders have yet to completed against the aggressors of 4 December 2011.”  In the case of the Aurora Ermita ejido, they noted that “there are nine arrest-orders against the aggressors; two are imprisoned, so seven are left.”

They called on the government to soon return the displaced from Banavil and Aurora Ermita; to apply justice against those who have arrest-orders against them; to guarantee their security upon their return, so that these acts not recur; to clarify the disappearance of Alonso López Luna, an EZLN sympathizer from Banavil; and to comprehensively compensate the two groups of displaced, as mandated by the United Nations.

For more information (in Spanish):

Crean en Chiapas ONG en defensa de desplazados (La Jornada, 1ero de abril de 2014)

Comunicado de la Mesa de Coordinación por la Defensa de los Derechos Humanos en contra del desplazamiento forzado de las personas desplazadas de Banavil (31 de marzo de 2014)

Video de la conferencia de prensa (Koman Ilel, 31 de marzo de 2014)

Audio de la conferencia de prensa (Radio Pozol, 31 de marzo de 2014)

For more information from SIPAZ (in English):

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)

Chiapas: CDHFBC published more information on the Banavil case, Tenejapa (9 February 2012)


Chiapas: Adherent to the Sixth Declaration shot to death in Chilón

March 30, 2014

images

On 21 March, Carlos Gómez Silvano, a Tsotsil indigenous man of 22 years of age and an adherent to the Sixth Declaration of the Lacandona Jungle, was ambushed and murdered on a dirt road in the Chilón municipality.  His body showed 23 gunshot wounds from firearms of different calibers.  Gómez Silvano formed part of the adherents to the Sixth Declaration of the Lacandona Jungle who maintain possession of the land known as Virgen de Dolores.  The Public Ministry was prevented from confirming the acts and taking the body of the deceased, given that his comrades decided to take him to the place of his origin for burial.

“Shortly after a year since the murder of Juan Vázquez Guzmán, the bad government sends its hitmen to harm our Virgen de Dolores community which has been born with much effort and sacrifice,” noted a communique from the San Sebastián Bachajón ejido.  It should be stressed that several murders have been observed in the Chilón municipality that to date have not been clarified.

For more information (in Spanish):

Comunicado del Ejido San Sebastián Bachajón sobre asesinato del compañero Juan Carlos Gómez Silvano (Koman Ilel, 23 de marzo de 2014)

Emboscan y acribillan de 23 tiros a indígena prozapatista en Chiapas (Proceso, 21 de marzo de 2014)

Emboscan a líder tseltal (Cuarto Poder, 22 de marzo de 2014)

Acribillan a dirigente zapatista en Chiapas (Milenio, 22 de marzo de 2014)

For more information from SIPAZ (in English):

Chiapas: Close of global campaign “¡Juan Vázquez Guzmán lives, the struggle of Bachajón continues!” (20 July 2013)

Chiapas: Ejidatarios recall Juan Vázquez Guzmán, murdered in April (19 July 2013)

Chiapas: Week for Global Action: “Juan Vázquez Guzmán Lives, the Struggle of Bachajón Continues!” (7 June 2013)

Chiapas: ejidatario adherent to the Sixth Declaration murdered by gunfire in San Sebastián Bachajón (29 April 2013)

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

 


Guerrero: Police operation provokes confrontations and new arrest of member of CRAC-PC in Tixtla

March 30, 2014

Miembros de las CRAC-PC. Foto (@Sipaz)Members of CRAC-PC. Photo (@Sipaz)

During the morning of 19 March, a police operation carried out by federal and state units took place in the municipal head of Tixtla.

The police intervention had the objective of observing five search-orders and several arrest-orders against members of the Regional Coordination of Communal Authorities-Communal Police (CRAC-PC) from the El Paraíso Justice House, Ayutla de los Libres municipality, which had been indicated by the state governor Ángel Rivero as having links with guerrilla movements.

The operation resulted in the arrest of Aurora Molina González, sister to Gonzalo Molina, leader of the communal police who was arrested last October, accused by the state and municipal governments of terrorism and links to guerrilla movements.  According to official reports, Aurora Molina had taken control of the communal police of Tixtla following her brother’s arrest.

During the departure of the police convoy, several confrontations took place between police and youth from the Rural Normal School of Ayotzinapa, which lies adjacent to Tixtla.

In the afternoon, there was held a march to the Tixtla City Hall to demand the release of Aurora Molina and 12 others detained from the CRAC, whom the protestors qualified as political prisoners.

In the past year, there has developed a crossfire of accusations between the Communal Police and the Tixtla mayor, Gustavo Alcaraz (PRD), whom the former accuse of being allied with organized crime, while the latter accuses the Communal Police of being a destabilizing force linked to guerrilla movements and directed by persons from outside the region.

Beyond this, during the night of 19 March, there was produced an armed confrontation between members of the Communal Police pertaining to the group of coordinator Eliseo Villar Castillo and members of the CRAC, who accuse Villar Castillo of embezzling 740,000 pesos.  What is more, they sought to take the San Luís Acatlán House of Justice unarmed.

The confrontation ended with the intervention of the Army, which entered the CRAC offices to disarm the followers of Villar Castillo.

For more information (in Spanish):

Se enfrentan policías de Guerrero y comunitarios en El Fortín (La Jornada, 19 de marzo de 2014)

La Policía Federal detiene a una dirigente de la guardia comunitaria de Tixtla de Guerrero (Proceso, 19 de marzo de 2014)

Chocan miembros de la CRAC con policía y Ejército en Guerrero (El Financiero, 19 de marzo de 2014)

Chocan en Guerrero la CRAC y policías (El Universal, 20 de marzo de 2014)

Autodefensas disidentes atacan a comunitarios (Crónica, 20 de marzo de 2014)

For more information from SIPAZ (in English):

Guerrero: Ministerial Police detain Gonzalo Molina, CRAC promoter, en Tixtla (14 November 2013)

Guerrero: Navy kidnaps coordinator of CRAC in Olinalá (13 September 2013)

Guerrero: Regional Coordination of Communal Authorities-Communal Police (CRAC-PC) pronounces itself against state decree (26 February 2013)

Guerrero: Authorities linked to the UPOEG occupy the House of Justice of the CRAC in San Luis Acatlán (26 February 2013)

Guerrero: CECOP announces creation of Communal Police in Cacahuatepec communities (22 January 2014)


National: “La 72″ migrant home denounces kidnapping, robbery, and threats against migrants by INM

March 30, 2014

Foto @ Zapateando

Photo @ Zapateando

Fray Tomás González Castillo, director of the migrant home “La 72,” denounced that on 10 March a truck belonging to the National Institute on Migration (INM) from the Tenosique delegation stopped before several migrant persons.  “They took them into the vehicle and transferred them to a place very close to the jungle.  There, they released two persons, threatened them, took the only money they had (2700 pesos), threatened them once again, tortured them psychologically, and finally released them,” as the public denunciation notes.

He added that “this description is of a kidnapping comparable with the kidnappings carried out by organized crime in the zone, given that they deprive migrants of their liberty, take them to the jungle, extort them, torture them verbally, psychologically, and physically, and finally charge them for letting them go.”

It should be noted that two months prior, the federal police “arrested, beat, and threatened two migrants staying in ‘La 72′ with death.”  It should also be stressed that “La 72″ is a beneficiary of the Mechanism for the Protection of Rights-Defenders and Journalists, in addition to precautionary measures awarded by the Inter-American Commission on Human Rights.

For more information (in Spanish):

Agentes del INM en Tenosique, secuestran migrantes (Frontera Sur, 24 de marzo de 2014)

También INM secuestra migrantes: La 72 (Noticias sin Fronteras, 25 de marzo de 2014)

Agentes del Instituto Nacional de Migración secuestran, extorsionan y amenazan de muerte a dos personas migrantes en Tenosique, Tabasco (Centro de Medios Libres México, 24 de marzo de 2014)

For more information from SIPAZ (in English):

National: Collaborators of the “72″ migrant home abandon work due to threats (24 June 2013)

National: New death-threats directed against Fray Tomás, director of “La 72″ (27 March 2013)

Chiapas/Tabasco: “The forgotten border” press-conference (13 December 2011)

 


Chiapas: Arrest of those presumed responsible for the burning of a house in the Puebla Colony “an insult to the displaced” (Las Abejas Civil Society)

March 30, 2014

Casa de familia desplazada quemada en Colonia Puebla (@Koman Ilel)

House of displaced family burned in the Puebla Colony (@Koman Ilel)

In observance of the monthly commemoration of the Acteal massacre in the Chenalhó municipality, the Las Abejas Civil Society published a communique referring to the context in the Puebla Colony which pertains to this municipality: “although they arrested two persons as the presumed responsible [ones] for the burning of the house of our brother Macario Arias Gómez, it is very clear that it is a move to merely cover up the shame of the bad government of Manuel Velasco Coello, because those displaced from Puebla clarified that those two persons have never entered the conflict of the Catholic land in the community in mention.”

They stressed that “We members of the civil and peaceful organization qualify this type of ‘justice’ applied by the bad government of Manuel Velasco with the arrest of 2 persons as those presumed responsible for the burning of the house as being an insult to the displaced Catholics from the Puebla Colony, who since August 2013 have sought justice, compensation, and return.”

It should be recalled that since 12 March, Maximiliano Sántiz Cruz and Domingo Cruz Méndez have been held by the Special Prosecutorial Office on Indigenous Justice for the crime of arson.  Stressing their “opportune attention to the case,” the state government stressed that the ejidal authorities of Puebla “assisted with the identification and arrest of those presumed responsible.”

For more information (in Spanish):

Comunicado de la Sociedad Civil Las Abejas (22 de marzo de 2014)

Atención oportuna al ejido Puebla: ERA (Cuarto Poder, 23 de marzo de 2014)

Detienen a dos tzotziles por quemar casas en Chiapas (El Universal, 12 de marzo de 2014)

For more information from SIPAZ (in English):

Chiapas: House of displaced family is burned down in Puebla Colony, Chenalhó. Two are arrested (16 March 2014)

Chiapas: Those displaced from the Puebla Colony once again postpone possible return following new aggression (18 March 2014)

Chiapas: Authorities hand over land in dispute to Catholics in Puebla Colony.  ”This is not the priority solution for the displaced,” note Las Abejas (2 March 2014)

Chiapas: Those displaced from the Puebla Colony, Chenalhó return to Acteal (13 February 2014)

Chiapas: Those displaced from the Puebla ejido do not find conditions for return (3 February 2014)

Chiapas: those displaced from the Puebla ejido return to their community to harvest coffee (22 January 2014)

 


National: A delicate moment for the Mechanism for the Protection of Rights Defenders and Journalists

March 30, 2014

imagesNearly two years after its creation, the Mechanism for the Protection of Rights Defenders and Journalists in Mexico finds itself in a delicate moment, in light of the resignation of its head, Juan Carlos Gutiérrez Contreras, on 15 March, a situation has led to multiple questionings regarding its efficacy.  On 24 March, civil councilors of the Mechanism retired from the Governmental Council headed by the subsecretary for Governance, Lía Limón García, given their view that there do not exist adequate conditions for its functioning.

Since June 2013, civil-society organizations have presented a diagnostic regarding deficiencies within the Mechanism.  At present they identify structural failures: the impossibility of having a stable and qualified team due to constant firings, the fact that the full budget set aside for the organism is not yet accessible, and a delay in attending to cases.  Edgar Córtez, one of the civil councilors, detailed for example that until February of this year, the mechanism had received 152 petitions for aid, of which 22 were rejected, 89 were pending, and only 41 had been reviewed and discussed.  This implies that at least 70% of the requests have not yet been considered.

In a communique, civil society called on the Secretary of Governance “to assure in the coming election of the next Executive Coordination of the Mechanism that the designated person have proven experience in human rights, as national and international civil society organizations and journalists have noted in recent days, that a labor policy be established so that those who work for the Mechanism have their rights respected, and that [the Mechanism] work urgently to develop a priority means of responding to the problems identified with the mechanism with defined actions and results to achieve.”

For more information (in Spanish):

Pronunciamiento de OSC sobre las fallas del Mecanismo de Protección a Personas Defensoras de DH y periodistas (OSC, 27 de marzo de 2014)

Mecanismo de protección a periodistas falla y sus deficiencias no son atendidas: defensores (Animal político, 27 de marzo de 2014

Fallas estructurales en el Mecanismo de Protección de Defensores de Derechos Humanos y Periodistas (La Jornada, 26 de marzo de 2014)

Crece inconformidad contra Lía Limón; consejeros civiles la dejan sola (Proceso, 24 de marzo de 2014)

For more information from SIPAZ (in English):

National: launching of Consultative Council of Mechanism for Protection of Journalists and Rights-Defenders (26 October 2012)

National: Approval of Law for the Protection of Human-Rights Defenders and Journalists (16 May 2012)


National/Internacional: Mexico accepts 166 of the 176 recommendations released by the United Nations

March 30, 2014

índiceOn 20 March, the Mexican government presented in an addendum its observations regarding the 176 recommendations it had received in October 2013 during its evaluation before the Universal Periodic Review (UPR), which took place during the 25th period of sessions of the UN Human Rights Council.  The UPR is a mechanism of periodic evaluation of the UN HRC, created in 2006 to consider the situations that prevail on the question in each of the 193 member-nations.

The Mexican State affirmed that “there has been a large acceptance of the recommendations made by the member-nations.”  It added that the federal government would design a mechanism coordinated with governmental institutions that would guarantee the participation of civil organizations to evaluate progress on the recommendations.  It noted that said recommendations were taken into account for the construction of the National Program in terms of human rights that will soon be presented.

Regardless, civil-society organizations lamented that Mexico has rejected observations on questions “such as the elimination of ‘community control’ and the recognition of the competence of the Committee on Forced Disappearance to receive individual complaints.”  They noted that, the optimistic view of the authorities notwithstanding, the human-rights situation in Mexico continues to be grave.

They added that “in accordance with the information provided by the Mexican government, it is from now that the national process to design a mechanism to observe and follow the received recommendations,” a process which they will follow closely to assure that “the commitments do not remain only on paper, but rather that they be translated into true changes for human rights in the country.”

For more information (in Spanish):

Respuesta de México a las recomendaciones del Mecanismo de Examen Periódico Universal del Consejo de Derechos Humanos(Secretaría de Relaciones Exteriores, marzo de 2014)

Defiende México ante la ONU la figura del arraigo (Proceso, 19 de marzo de 2014)

Acepta México 166 de 176 recomendaciones de la ONU en derechos humanos (La Jornada, 20 de marzo de 2014)

Comunicado conjunto: Esencial que compromisos asumidos en el Examen Periódico Universal se traduzcan en cambios reales en México (OSC, 20 de marzo de 2014)

Tres recomendaciones de ONU omitirá México (El Universal, 21 de marzo de 2014)

Sesión completa de México ante el Consejo DDHH: Mexico, UPR Report Consideration (61 min.).

For more information from SIPAZ (in English):

National: 176 recommendations for Mexico during the second cycle of the Universal Periodic Review (13 November 2013)

Mexico: Mexico undergoes the Universal Periodic Review (13 February 2009)

Mexico: The Mexican republic rejects recommendations made by the UPR (16 July 2009)


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: http://yorailmaya.wordpress.com/

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)


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