National: AMLO Presents His First Government Report

September 10, 2019


On September 1st, Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador (AMLO) presented his first Government Report as president in the presence of approximately 500 guests in Mexico City. This Report was also sent to Congress as a protocol in the country and includes advances and challenges in the National Development Plan 2019-2024, which was published last April 30th and outlines the government’s priorities and goals.

In his speech, AMLO referred to the need to continue fighting corruption, as well as to seek greater justice and equality, stressing that, “building a country with wellbeing requires the inclusion of all groups, particularly the poorest.” In the results of his austerity policy, he said that, “in these first nine months we have achieved savings of 145 thousand million pesos.” He affirmed that “the Stock Exchange has remained stable; the economy is growing little but there is no recession, and now the distribution of income is less unfair.”

Critical voices called attention to some of his statements that cannot be verified due to lack of data or lack of updating in official sources in this regard, for example, when it is mentioned that eight million older adults have received their pension, or that there are 930,000 young people in the Youth Building the Future program.

Regarding security, AMLO said that we still have to “work hard because the results are not good in terms of reducing the incidence of crime and the problem is being addressed, but it is our main challenge.” He reported the deployment of 58,600 members of the National Guard and “the goal is to deploy 140,000 elements of the National Guard throughout the country.”

Regarding human rights, AMLO stressed that “the State has ceased to be the main violator of human rights”, that “45 political prisoners have been released” and that there are 315 journalists and 639 human rights defenders who benefit currently of the protection of the Mexican State. In the written report, “the serious human rights crisis that the country is experiencing” is recognized and the government’s commitment to “face the demands of truth, justice, reparation of the victims and non-repetition” is highlighted.

On migration, AMLO acknowledged that it had to change its strategy to avoid an economic confrontation with the United States, but did not give more information about the impact this change has had on human rights. He said that “in the month of June the threat of imposing tariffs and a possible economic and political crisis”, was achieved “an immigration agreement that obliges us to be stricter in the application of the law in the matter, without violating human rights and rescuing in our favor the recognition that this matter will be addressed without using force and coercion, but by creating work and welfare opportunities for people in their places of origin.”

Some sources consider that this is rather the “AMLO’s third report”, the first being an intervention of AMLO marking a hundred days of government, and the second another speech a year after the elections in which he won the presidency. Around 1.15 million people watched the speech on television, 8% more than his speech on July 1st, a year after his victory of the presidency.

For more information in Spanish: 

Presidencia difunde el contenido del Informe de Gobierno de AMLO La Jornada, 1 de septiembre de 2019.

AMLO presume en su primer informe sus políticas de apoyo a jóvenes, adultos mayores y discapacitados (Proceso, 1ero de septiembre de 2019)

Son 337 periodistas y 639 defensores de DH los que tienen protección: AMLO (Proceso, 1ero de septiembre de 2019)

El Informe destaca búsqueda de desaparecidos, liberación de presos políticos y alertas de violencia de género (Proceso, 1ero de septiembre de 2019)

Discurso completo de AMLO por su Primer Informe de Gobierno, en Palacio Nacional Animal Político, 1 de septiembre de 2019.

Cifras y acciones que destacó AMLO durante su Primer Informe… y que no se pueden comprobar Animal Político, 2 de septiembre de 2019.

Cuántos millones ven y en donde los informes de AMLO? El Universal, 3 de septiembre de 2019.

For more information from SIPAZ:

National: AMLO Confirms Head of National Guard Will Be Serving Military Officer (April 9, 2019)

Nacional: AMLO cumplió 100 días en el poder; revisa avances en compromisos (March 12th, 2019)

National: Chamber of Deputies Approves Law that Creates National Guard after Three Months of Debate and Negotiation (March 9, 2019)


Oaxaca: State Congress Approves Marriage Equality Bill

September 10, 2019


On August 27th, the local Congress of Oaxaca approved a reform of the Civil Code to legalize marriage and cohabitation between same-sex couples with 25 votes in favor and 10 votes against, while several deputies of the National Regeneration Movement (MORENA in its Spanish acronym) abstained or were absent during the vote.

This makes Oaxaca the nineteenth state that introduces marriage equality in its legislation. In addition to Mexico City, the states of Baja California Sur, Coahuila, Campeche, Colima, Hidalgo, Michoacan, Morelos, Nayarit, Quintana Roo and San Luis Potosí recognize this, while in Aguascalientes, Baja California, Chiapas, Chihuahua, Jalisco, Nuevo Leon, and Puebla same-sex couples need validation from the Court if they want to get married.

Until now, Article 143 of the Oaxaca Civil Code defined marriage as “one man and one woman” which aims to “perpetuate the species.” Now the reformed article says that, “marriage is the civil contract between two people, who come together to live a common life and provide respect, equality and mutual help.”

There had already been attempts to enable same-sex marriages before that reform. In August 2011, the requests of three homosexual couples were denied by the Civil Registry of Oaxaca, but in April of the following year, with the support of the civil organization Equaity Mexico (Mexico Igualitario), one of them achieved for the first time in all of Mexico a sentence allowing their marriage by court order without having to reform the constitution. Antonio Medina, national director of Sexual Diversity of the Aztec Sun (Diversidad Sexual del Sol Azteca) stressed that the reform of the Civil Code “was the result of the hard work of civil organizations that for several years did not stop insisting on achieving this goal.”

While the LGBTTTIQ + Oaxaqa community is celebrating the reform presented by deputies Hilda Perez Luis, Magaly Lopez Dominguez and deputy Noe Doroteo Castillejos as a great achievement, the State Confraternity of Christian Evangelical Pastors expressed their dissatisfaction with the decision. On the day of the vote, members of the evangelical community protested in front of Congress and demanded that the initiative be rejected.

Despite the protests, Alex Ali Mendez Diaz, president of the Equal Mexico organization, announced: “we will continue to fight for other rights that are still necessary to achieve the eradication of discrimination based on sex, sexual preference, among others.”

For more information in Spanish:

Oaxaca da luz verde al matrimonio igualitario (Proceso el 28 de agosto de 2019)

Aprueban en Oaxaca matrimonio igualitario; protestan evangélicos (La Jornada el 29 de agosto de 2019)

For more information from SIPAZ:

Chiapas: Organización defensora de la diversidad sexual recibe amenazas por su trabajo en el marco del Mes de Orgullo LGBTTTIQA+ (June 27th, 2019)

Chiapas: alto a la violencia homofóbica (May 17th, 2018)

National: Senate Agrees to Guarantee Equal Rights to Same-Sex Couples (November 12, 2018)

Nacional: Aprueba Senado garantizar igualdad de derechos para las parejas del mismo sexo (7 de noviembre de 2018)

Oaxaca: Mujer transgénero recibe su credencial de elector de una representación del INE (8 de agosto de 2017)


Oaxaca: 126 Femicides One Year after Declaration of Gender Violence Alert

September 2, 2019

GVA(@Rio Oaxaca)

On August 30th, one year after the declaration of the Gender Violence Alert (GVA) in 40 municipalities in Oaxaca, several organizations that work in defense of women’s rights reported that 126 women were killed in this period, including a victim the same day. This figure implies that the GVA “did not make a difference” and in addition, 60% of the cases occurred in municipalities that have the GVA. Symbolically, protesters placed 126 masks and 126 hearts with the names of each of the women killed.

Yessica Sanchez Maya, a member of the Consortium for Dialogue and Equity, said that the Oaxaca Prosecutor, Ruben Vasconcelos Mendez, has spent his time making up figures and that state and federal governments have not been complying with the actions established in the GVA.

GESMujer organization considered the scope of the alerts limited and called on the government to continue implementing and strengthening the “State Program to Prevent, Address, Punish and Eradicate Gender Violence Against Women”, recently published in the Official State Bulletin.

They called on the governor of the state to meet immediately with the municipal presidents so that they do not continue to simulate and apply the gender alert as it should be. Likewise, they asked the three levels of government as well as the executive, judicial and legislative branches to make public the budget for the implementation of the alert (more than 12 million pesos are allocated to Oaxaca), as well as a detailed report of the results of each of the actions.

For more information in Spanish:

Oaxaca : 126 feminicidios en un año, 60 en municipios con AVG (Proceso, 30 de agosto de 2019)

A pesar de la Alerta de Género, Oaxaca registró 126 feminicidios en un año (Desinformémonos, 30 de agosto de 2019)

Van 126 feminicidios, a un año de la Alerta de Violencia de Género (NVI Noticias, 30 de agosto de 2019)

Van 126 feminicidios en Oaxaca, a un año de la alerta de género (Río Oaxaca, 30 de agosto de 2019)

Colectivos feministas se manifiestan ante las 126 mujeres asesinadas en Oaxaca (NVI Noticias, 30 de agosto de 2019)

For more information from SIPAZ:

Oaxaca: Aprueban la ley contra la violencia digital de género (12 de julio de 2019)

Oaxaca: Se suman 37 feminicidios en lo que va del año (24 de abril de 2019)

National: Over 424,000 on Mexican #Me Too (May 7, 2019)


International/National: UNO Calls for Evaluation of National Guard as Migratory Control in Mexico

September 2, 2019

National Guard@billieparkernoticias

The United Nations Committee against Racial Discrimination (UNCRD) insisted that the Mexican government evaluate the effects of the deployment of the National Guard as a form of immigration control. In addition, it raised the possibility of withdrawing this function by recommending “evaluating the effects of the deployment of the National Guard for immigration control with a view to its withdrawal from immigration control and intensify its efforts to eliminate the practice of racial profiling in management and migratory operations, including through the wide dissemination and due implementation of the Guide for Public Action for the Prevention of Racial Profiling Practices.”

The UNCRD also mentioned international agreements regarding the rights of migrants, and suggested that, “the necessary measures be implemented so that Migration Centers have adequate living conditions in accordance with international standards.”

The UNCRD made these recommendations on August 23rd, in Geneva, Switzerland.

For more information in Spanish:

Pide ONU evaluar efectos de acciones policiales para control migratorio La Jornada, 29 de agosto de 2019.

ONU solicita retiro de Guardia Nacional de operaciones migratorias El Heraldo de México, 29 de agosto de 2019.

ONU pide retirar a Guardia Nacional de operaciones migratorias Forbes México, 30 de agosto de 2019.

Guía para la Acción Pública para la Prevención de Prácticas de Perfilamiento Racial Consejo Nacional para Prevenir la Discriminación, 2018.

For more information from SIPAZ:

Chiapas: Federal Police Attack Migrants and Journalists at Migration Center in Tapachula (September 2, 2019)

National/International: New Government Measures Seek to Curb Flow of Migrants (July 2, 2019)

Chiapas/National/International: Migrants’ Human Rights Defenders, Irineo Mujica and Cristobal Sanchez, Released (June 17, 2019)

National/International: Two Defenders of Migrant Human Rights Arrested (June 11, 2019)

National: Concrete Measures Needed to Stop Fracking Despite Government Promises. Foreign Company Drills Oil in Mexico for First Time in 80 Years.

September 2, 2019


On August 27th, the Mexican Alliance against Fracking, composed of more than 40 civil organizations, stressed that, despite the commitment of President Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador (AMLO) to stop the use of hydraulic fracturing (fracking) to extract hydrocarbons in the country, not enough has been done to achieve this. It pointed out that the Petroleos Mexicanos (Pemex) Business Plan, published in July, indicates that fracking will continue to be used.

For his part, Manuel Llano of the Carto Critica organization noted that “an absolute continuity in the regulatory framework that allows hydraulic fractures in the country is maintained, without any action implemented by the Executive that is within the meaning of the President’s words.”

On another note, AMLO publicly thanked the Italian company Eni, which started to extract oil from the Gulf of Mexico a few months ago, for “trusting in Mexico.” Eni is the first foreign company to do so in 80 years. These activities were possible thanks to the energy reform bill, promoted by the government of Enrique Peña Nieto and criticized by AMLO.

For more information in Spanish: 

Más de 40 ONGs exhiben el uso de fracking con AMLO; Pemex, Sener, CNH y ASEA “no tienen estrategia” Sin Embargo, 27 de agosto de 2019.

AMLO agradece a la primera empresa extranjera en extraer petróleo en 80 años Forbes México, 28 de agosto de 2019.

AMLO ha incumplido compromiso de frenar el fracking, exhiben más de 40 ONG’s Espejo, 28 de agosto de 2019.

Más de ocho mil pozos usan fracking para extraer recursos en México Vanguardia, 28 de agosto de 2019.

For more information from SIPAZ:

National: Fracking or not in Mexico? (February 13, 2019)

National: Mexican Alliance against Fracking Urges President Elect to Legally Stop the Activity (August 19, 2018)

Pronunciamiento de la Alianza Mexicana contra el Fracking con respecto a declaraciones recientes de Andrés Manuel López Obrador (AMCF, 7 de agosto de 2018)

Chiapas: Federal Police Attack Migrants and Journalists at Migration Center in Tapachula

September 2, 2019


On the morning of August 26th, federal police attacked migrants and two journalists while they were dispersing a blockade in front of the Siglo XXI migration center in Tapachula.

The two journalists, Damian Sanchez and Jose E. Torres, reported that they were beaten and kicked by the police when they were already on the ground. Some migrants were injured by police as well, and one was taken to the hospital for medical attention.

According to journalists, before the confrontation, an member of the Federal Police imitated a monkey with a very derogatory and racist gesture, directed against African migrants.

In the confrontation, the Federal Police used shields and pepper spray. A police officer was also taken to the hospital.

The violence comes after 11 days of blockade by a group of African migrants, who have been in front of the Siglo XXI facility seeking to obtain a change in the treatment of migrants from Africa and Asia. In the past, a migrant from one of these continents could receive a document that gave him 20 days to leave the country, which allowed him to travel legally to the northern border, and eventually enter the United States. However, since July 10th, the National Migration Institute (INM in its Spanish acronym) issued an executive order that states that migrants from these backgrounds will have to leave the country through the southern border. It is not clear if this policy change responds to pressure from the administration of the US president, Donald Trump, to force the Mexican government to curb migratory flows.

For more information in Spanish:

Policías federales agreden a migrantes y periodistas en estación Siglo XXI en Chiapas Animal Político, 27 de agosto de 2019.

Investigarán agresión a reporteros tras protesta de migrantes africanos El Sol de México, 27 de agosto de 2019.

Policía Actuó apegada a derechos humanos en enfrentamiento con migrantes: SSPC El Universal, 27 de agosto de 2019.

For more information from SIPAZ:

International/National: #DefensoresSinMuros-DefendersBeyondWalls Campaign Calls for End to Attacks against Defenders of Migrants’ Rights (July 8, 2019)

National/International: New Government Measures Seek to Curb Flow of Migrants (July 2, 2019)

National/International: US-Mexico Migration Deal Halts Imposition of Tariffs (June 17, 2019)

National/International: UNO Presents Diagnostic of Protection Mechanism of Human Rights Defenders and Journalists

September 2, 2019

ONU@Cinu Mexico

On August 26th, the Diagnosis of the Protection Mechanism for Human Rights Defenders and Journalists prepared by the representation in Mexico of the United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights (UNHCHR) was presented to the Ministry of the Interior. The 410-page document contains information taken from interviews with both beneficiaries and officials of the Mechanism, members of the Council of Government, members of civil society, as well as other authorities, officials of the company that implements the protection, experts and members of the Protection Unit.

Results from the diagnosis that was published on August 21st, 2019 show that there is a lack of resources to fulfill the promises of the Protection Mechanism for Defenders and Journalists. The seven people killed from 2016 to date and who were beneficiaries of the Mechanism reflect the “insufficient economic and material resources to ensure the proper operation of the Mechanism,” it said. This situation is exacerbated by the increasing number of beneficiaries due to the tendency of increasing attacks on journalists and human rights defenders. “The situation of human rights defenders and journalists remains alarming,” said Michelle Bachelet, the UN High Commissioner for Human Rights.

Until April of this year, the Mechanism provided protection to 903 people. With respect to the previous year, 70% more people were incorporated and the document predicts that there will be 1,131 beneficiaries by the end of 2019. The expense to guarantee the security of that number of people would reach 325 million pesos, which exceeds the planned budget of 117.4 million pesos. “We started the whole process with Secretary Urzua and we have renewed it again with Arturo Herrera, and hopefully there will be results for 150 million pesos more. Hopefully they will be in the month of October”, explained Aaron Mastache Mondragon, head of the Unit for the Defense of Human Rights of the Ministry of the Interior referring to a request submitted by SEGOB in April 2019.

Another reason for concern is the involvement of public servants in the cases given 55% of the beneficiaries indicate agents of the State as culprits. Jan Jarab, representative of the UNHCHR, who presented the diagnosis, stressed that “there is a local dynamic that is very dangerous (for defenders and journalists) and we will not solve it only with hard protection measures that a company can implement, we have to investigate and sanction these actions (against the groups), we have to take preventive actions and do them not only ad hoc, because since the arrival of Alejandro Encinas and Aaron Mastache they have intervened in several cases, they have done well, but it is necessary that it be part of a systematic policy to reduce these risks in cases of attacks by public servants.”

For more information in Spanish:

Faltan recursos al gobierno de AMLO para garantizar protección a periodistas y activistas, alerta la ONU (El Proceso el 21 de agosto de 2019)

Al ritmo actual no habrá presupuesto para proteger periodistas: ONU-DH (La Jornada el 21 de agosto de 2019)

En octubre podría darse aumento de 150 mdp al Mecanismo de Protección: Segob (El Proceso el 26 de agosto de 2019)

Gobierno responde a ONU sobre protección para activistas y periodistas (La Jornada el 26 de agosto de 2019)

For more information from SIPAZ:

National: Consultative Council on Mechanism for Protection of Human Rights Defenders and Journalists (April 11, 2019)

National: Mechanism for Protection of Human Rights Defenders and Journalists Reviewed (March 31, 2019)

National/International: UNHCHR Condemns Murders of Defenders and Journalists in Chiapas and Baja California and Questions Efficacy of Government Protection Mechanism (January 31, 2019)

National: 161 Defenders and 40 Journalists Murdered in Last Presidential Term of Office (December 14, 2018)

National: Federal Mechanism for Journalists and Defenders without Funding (October 14, 2018)