Oaxaca: Twentieth anniversary of EDUCA. “20 years of sowing social processes”

November 12, 2014

twiter_20_años_con_hp

Services for an Alternative Education (EDUCA) has now celebrated its twentieth anniversary.  The organization began after the armed insurrection of the Zapatista Army of National Liberation (EZLN) in Chiapas, and it has been following two major aspects in its work: the promotion of citizens’ participation in Oaxaca and human rights, particularly of indigenous peoples.  Using the slogan “20 years of sowing social processes,” the civil organization this year will review what it has sown and what it has reaped.

EDUCA members have affirmed that “20 years ago, we raised our voice to give reason to our hope.  Today we continue firmly with that conviction.  It is true that 20 years are not many; they are in fact a mere breath in time, but at the same time that span could be a life full of struggle.  Thank you!”

For more information (in Spanish):

Para Educa, sexenio de URO, el más negro (Noticiasnet.mx, 19 de octubre de 2014)

EDUCA 20 años sembrando procesos sociales. Felicitaciones de cumpleaños (EDUCA, 3 de noviembre de 2014)

Recuento de la historia de EDUCA (EDUCA)

Entrevista con Marcos Leyva Madrid, Director de EDUCA A. C. sobre el vigésimo aniversario (EDUCA)


Oaxaca: Beginning of consultation regarding wind-energy park in Juchitán

November 12, 2014

Consulta en Juchitán (@Gobierno del estado de Oaxaca)

Consultation in Juchitán (@state-government of Oaxaca Oaxaca)

On 3 November, a consultative process was launched in Juchitán de Zaragoza in comformity with the stipulations of Convention 169 of the International Labor Organization (ILO).  This process will involve five phases to allow for the population to accept or reject a proposed project for 132 wind-energy plants that would be installed on a territory of 5,332 hectares in their jurisdiction.  This project would be owned by the Wind-Energy Firm of the South (formerly Mareña Renovables).  This is the same project that was rejected by the Ikojts people in San Dionisio del Mar and the Binnizá from Álvaro Obregón, near Juchitán.

For the present, the form of the consultative process is being defined.  The question has unleashed a number of reactions regarding the validity of said mechanism between those who believe it be a genuine and historical process, being the first consultation that is carried out, while others feel it is mere pretense.

For more information (in Spanish):

Se inicia en Juchitán consulta pública sobre parque eólico (La Jornada, 4 de noviembre de 2014)

Inicia en Juchitán proceso de consulta previa sobre proyecto eólico (Radio Formula, 3 de noviembre de 2014)

Modifican procedimiento del Protocolo de consulta eólica (Romonoticias, 4 de noviembre de 2014)

Protocolo para la Consulta en Juchitán

El parque eólico juchiteco: participación y preguntas(Quadratin Oaxaca, 30 de octubre de 2014)

Bodas de plata del Convenio 169 de la OIT: lo bueno, lo malo y lo feo (El periódico, 26 de octubre de 2014)

La consulta previa y los malabares del gobierno (Animal Político, 16 de octubre de 2014)


Oaxaca: 16 months after the imprisonment of Damián Gallardo, and following call from the UN, there is no response from the Mexican State

October 12, 2014

Foto @ Front Line Defenders

Photo @ Front Line Defenders

The Committee of Relatives and Friends of Damián Gallardo, the Mexican League for the Defense of Human Rights (LIMEDDH-Oaxaca), Services for an Alternative Education (EDUCA), Consorcio for Parliamentary Dialogue and Equity Oaxaca, the New Woman Collective, and the Oaxaca Citizens’ Initiative denounced that 16 months after the incarceration of teacher Damián Gallardo Martínez, who has been accused of participating in the kidnapping of children, the Mexican State has provided no response to the calls from the international community and the UN regarding the human-rights violations experienced during his imprisonment.  In a press-conference, Idolina Gallardo Martínez, Damián’s sister, said that 6 months after UN institutions called on the Mexican government to provide evidence for the charges on which the teacher has been incarcerated, “there is silence from the authorities in question.”

Beyond this, the representative of LIMEDDH-Oaxaca mentioned that international organizations like Front Line Defenders and the Observatory for the Protection of Human-Rights Defenders have published urgent actions to manifest their concern for the well-being of Gallardo Martínez and to call on the Mexican State to release him immediately, in accordance with its international obligations to protect human rights and carry out an expeditious investigation regarding the acts that have been denounced.

For more information (in Spanish):

Estado mexicano no ha respondido a ONU por caso Damián Gallardo (Noticias Net, 6 de octubre de 2014)

Exigen familiares de Damián Gallardo respuesta a exigencias (Tiempo en Línea, 5 de octubre de 2014)

Comunicado Caso Damián Gallardo (Ciudadanía Express, 5 de octubre de 2014)

For more information from SIPAZ (in English):

Oaxaca/National: Assault on teacher Damián Gallardo in a prison of Jalisco (13 June 2014)


Oaxaca: 75 arrests following march on 2 October

October 11, 2014

Foto @ Noticias Net

Photo @ Noticias Net

Like similar actions taken throughout Mexico, the 2 October march in Oaxaca was made to commemorate the 46 years since the Tlatelolco massacre and to express rejection of the grave murders and disappearances of students from Ayotzinapa in Iguala, in addition to other situations of violence experienced in Mexico.  The march in Oaxaca resulted in the arrest of 75 persons (44 females and 31 males), the majority of whom were minors.  It was also reported that members of the Indigenous Organization for Human Rights in Oaxaca (OIDHO) and of Section 22 of the National Union of Educational Workers (SNTE) were arrested.  The press bulletin released by OIDHO details that “at the bus stop to return home, eight members of the youth commission of our organization, one of them being a minor and several of the others being communal human-rights defenders, were victimized by an arbitrary arrest by the municipal and state police [...].  After subjecting the youth in question to a brutal beating which angered neighbors and other passersby on the same street, they were carried off to two police trucks, and under constant physical and psychological abuse were transferred to the offices of the Secretary for Public (In)Security in San Bartolo Coyotepec.”

Norma Cruz Vázquez, the regional representative of Section 22 of the SNTE, confirmed the release of the 57 normalist students of the Normalist Student Coordination of Oaxaca (CENEO) who had been arrested as the presumed perpetrators of the destruction and vandalizations committed by a group of “anarchists” against at least 8 commercial establishments, an ATM, the offices of the Federal Electricity Commission (CFE), and the Palace for Governance.

For more information (in Spanish):

Policía en Oaxaca detiene a estudiantes normalistas (Sección 22, 2 de octubre de 2014)

Liberan a normalistas tras detención ‘arbitraria’ por disturbios en marcha; ningún ‘anarquista’ detenido (Noticias Net, 3 de octubre de 2014)

Saldo de la marcha conmemorativa del 2 de octubre en Oaxaca: 75 personas detenidas (Kaos en la Red, 2 de octubre de 2014)

Con 37 marchas, bloqueos y daños a comercios se conmemoró la matanza del 2 de octubre de 1968 (Página 3, 2 de octubre de 2014)

For more information from SIPAZ (in English):

National: More confrontations and repression against social movement, 2 October (25 October 2013)


Oaxaca: Two dead and one seriously injured, in a “worrying increase of police violence” (EDUCA)

October 11, 2014

Imagen @ OIDHO.org

Image @ OIDHO.org

On 22 September, the communal leader Jaime López Hernández, member of the Indigenous Organization for Human Rights in Oaxaca (OIDHO), was killed by a shot in the back in the San Andrés Lovene community, San Juan Ozolotepec municipality, as he was visiting his mother’s gravesite. Services for an Alternative Education (EDUCA) manifested its energetic rejection of the act, condemning the murder of Jaime López, and it noted that “[we are] concerned by the increase in police violence in Oaxaca and the impunity in which attacks against [social] leaders and human-rights defenders remain.  Jaime López’s murder [...] joins in a long chain of attacks committed against human-rights activists.  Organizations such as Peace Brigades International and the National Network of Human Rights ‘All Rights for All’ have located Oaxaca as one of the states in which is observed the most attacks on human-rights defenders.  We call on the state authorities to act immediately in this case, to engage in a lawful investigation, and to commit themselves seriously to protecting the work of defenders in Oaxaca.”

Beyond this, on 26 September, two teachers from Section 22 of the National Coordination of Educational Workers (CNTE) were fired upon from a vehicle as they were walking in the street.  Of the two teachers, both of whom worked in a high school in San Mateo del Mar, one died–Shamir Jonatán Osorio Gallegos–while the other, Manuel Reyna Osorio, was seriously injured.

Lastly, reflecting on the numerous violent acts that have been seen in different parts of Mexico of late, an opinion article in La Jornada expressed that “Despite the official efforts to minimize the impacts of insecurity in the social perception, violence and criminal anarchy continue to affect the people in many regions of the national territory, giving the impression that the attempt to deviate attention from these problems does nothing more than exacerbate them [...].  The armed forces continue to be employed in police tasks that are distinct from their constitutionally defined role; the country lacks social, political, educational, and health policies that would be able to act as a preventive factor against organized crime; impunity prevails in nearly all the crimes committed by the previous administration; the reform of police bodies at the three levels [of government] continues to be a pending task; the observance of human rights experiences serious factical and institutional regression, and, above all, an economic policy that provokes social anomie, unemployment, and marginalization, that obliges large segments of the population to work in the informal sector and that, ultimately, ends up feeding criminality continues and is made yet more profound.”

For more information (in Spanish):

Boletín de Prensa: Asesinan a Jaime López, integrante de OIDHO(OIDHO, 23 de septiembre de 2014)  

Líder de OIDHO fue asesinado frente a la tumba de su madre en San Andrés Lovene (Página 3, 24 de septiembre de 2014)

RvsR: Ante el asesinato de Jaime López Hernández, de la OIDHO (Enlace Zapatista, 2 de octubre de 2014)

Violencia imparable (La Jornada, 29 de septiembre de 2014)

Condena Sección 22 asesinato de profesor (El Imparcial Oaxaca, 28 de septiembre de 2014)

Atacan a balazos a 2 intendentes (El Imparcial Oaxaca, 28 de septiembre de 2014)

Tirotean a maestros de la @SECCIONXXII en Oaxaca; Un muerto (E-Consulta Oaxaca, 27 de septiembre de 2014)

For more information from SIPAZ (in English):

Oaxaca: Concern for the alarming increase in murders in the state (26 April 2014)


Oaxaca/National: Efforts to avert imprisonment of human-rights defender Bettina Cruz

October 1, 2014

Bettina Cruz (@SIPAZ archivo)

Bettina Cruz (@SIPAZ archive)

In a press conference held on 23 September, federal legislators called on the Federal Attorney General’s Office (PGR) to stop the looming incarceration of Oaxacan rights-defender Bettina Cruz Velázquez, who presently free faces accusations of kidnapping and crimes against consumption and national wealth.

It bears mentioning that on 22 February 2012, the defender was detained and incarcerated, accused of kidnapping and crimes against consumption and the national wealth, though she only participated in a protest a year previous opposing high electricity prices in Oaxaca.  On 24 February 2012 she posted bail and was released, but the legal process against her continues.

The legislators in question affirm that they “consider that the moves and process against Bettina represent acts of criminalization of social protest, illustrating the risky situations faced by persons who work to defend human rights.  Through this process, it has become clear that the justice system has deviated greatly against them, particularly those who work in defense of the land amidst the imposition of megaprojects.”

Beyond this, in a communique published on 25 September, Amnesty International (AI) warned that, if the judiciary power decided to imprison the rights-defender, it would “consider nominating her as a prisoner of conscience.”  AI stressed that the obligation of the Mexican authorities “is to guarantee that the justice system does not work in favor of the persecution of those who defend human rights, as revenge against their legitimate actions.”

For more information (in Spanish):

Piden legisladores a PGR evitar encarcelamiento de activista (Cimac Noticias, 23 de septiembre de 2014)

Carta completa de los legisladores (23 de septiembre de 2014)

No a la persecución judicial de las personas defensoras de derechos humanos (Amnistía Internacional, 25 de septiembre de 2014)

Campaña en twitter: etiqueta #JusticiaparaBettina

For more information from SIPAZ (in English):

Oaxaca: Various denunciations in the Tehuantepec Isthmus from community assemblies organized against wind-farms in their territories (6 September 2014)

Oaxaca: Confrontations in Álvaro Obregón community, Juchitán, leave several injured (15 March 2014)

Oaxaca: Opponents to wind-energy parks threatened with death in the Isthmus (2 March 2014)

Oaxaca: Denunciation of harassment and death-threats against human-rights defenders in the Tehuantepec Isthmus (9 December 2013)

Oaxaca: Detention and subsequent release of rights-defender Bettina Cruz Velázquez (March 7, 2012)

Oaxaca: Death-threats against human-rights defenders (4 November 2011)


Oaxaca: New attack on members of the “Brothers on the Path” migrant home in Ixtepec

October 1, 2014

Foto @ Albergue Hermanos en el Camino

On 18 September, agents of the National Institute on Migration (INM) and the Mexican Army physically and verbally assaulted members and human-rights defenders associated with the “Brothers on the Path” migrant home in Ixtepec, as the latter were carrying out their work in the Chivela community, located in the northern zone of the Tehuantepec Isthmus.  The attacks took place as the workers were traveling in the train that leaves Ixtepec for Medias Aguas, Veracruz.  In response to the attacks, the workers submitted a penal denunciation before the Ixtepec Prosecutorial Office on Migrants against the INM and also submitted complaints to the National Commission on Human Rights (CNDH).  They indicated that while they were documenting attacks against migrant persons, they observed the presence of three INM vehicles and three Army convoys.

It should be noted that, following the federal government’s implementation of the Southern Border Plan (PFS) two months ago, 57 persons have been victims of grave crimes, such as robbery, extortion, rape, and assault, according to the findings of the “Brothers on the Path” migrant home.  Attacks on migrants have increased 90% during this period.

For more information (in Spanish):

Comunicado del Albergue Hermanos en el Camino (19 de septiembre de 2014)

INM y Ejército agreden a defensores de migrantes; les decomisan material documentado (Centro ProDH, 21 de septiembre de 2014)

Agrede INM a defensores de Derechos Humanos (Noticias Net, 21 de septiembre de 2014)

Testimonio narra agresiones de agentes del INM a activistas en Oaxaca(Animal Político, 21 de septiembre de 2014)

El Plan Frontera Sur: violencia institucionalizada (Más de 131, 21 de septiembre de 2014)

For more information from SIPAZ (in English):

National/Chiapas: Massive raids against migrants and attack on human-rights defenders (3 May 2014)

National: “La 72″ migrant home denounces kidnapping, robbery, and threats against migrants by INM (30 March 2014)

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

Chiapas: March from Suchiate river to denounce abuses against migrants, and beginning of hunger strike (29 April 2013)


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