National: Amnesty International: Extreme Violence Increased Throughout Mexico

March 1, 2018

AmnestyPhoto @ DesdeAbajo

On February 22nd, Tania Reneaum, Executive Director of Amnesty International (AI), presented her annual report on Mexico and denounced that violence increased throughout the country during 2017. She mentioned that, in the last year of the presidency of President Enrique Peña Nieto, there were 42,583 homicides between January and November, a figure that according to the report could be higher, since some crimes are not reported to the police and not all cases led to official measures.

Amnesty International also indicated that the Mexican authorities failed to clarify the location of 34,656 people reported in the national registry of missing persons. It also lamented the problem of extrajudicial executions and that “the authorities did not publish the number of people killed or injured in clashes with the police and the military.”

Regarding the issue of migrants traveling to the United States, Amnesty expressed great concern, especially about their treatment during their journeys and the policies implemented by President Donald Trump.

The executive director stressed that “2017 has to be remembered as the year in which the Senate of the Republic and the President of the Republic ignored the recommendations of the Inter-American Commission on Human Rights (IACHR), the UN High Commissioner for Human Rights, and from NGOs, to carefully review the Internal Security Law.”

Despite the serious human rights crisis, the organization also noted that there is “a growing movement of resistance, led by both new and experienced activists, which really allows us to hope to reverse the tendency to oppression and fear.”

For more information in Spanish:

América Latina en alerta por “altos niveles” de violencia: Amnistía Internacional (El Imparcial de Oaxaca, 22 de febrero de 2018)

Se agravó la violencia en México en 2017: Amnistía Internacional (Proceso, 22 de febrero de 2018)

Amnistía Internacional: 2017, año de nuevos récords de violencia en México (Noticieros Televisa, 22 de febrero de 2018)

Surge nueva ola de activismo en AL por crisis de derechos humanos: AI (El Economista, 22 de febrero de 2018)

For more information from SIPAZ:

Guerrero: feminicidios a la alza en 2017 (11 de enero de 2018)


Oaxaca: MEPs Highlight Lack of Political Will Regarding Murder of Jyri Jaakkola and Bety Cariño

February 26, 2018

Bety(@CODIGO DH Archive)

 For the eighth time, MEP Ska Keller, co-chairperson of the Greens Group, and Satu Hassi, former MEP and current deputy of the Finnish parliament, traveled to Mexico to demand progress in the investigation of the murders of Jyri Jaakkola and Bety Cariño, committed in April of 2010 while participating in a humanitarian caravan to San Juan Copala, in the Triqui region. Despite their insistence, Governor Alejandro Murat did not receive them although finally, the head of the General Secretariat of Government, Hector Annuar Mafud Mafud, held a meeting with them.

The European deputies explained to the media that although there are written and signed agreements with the Oaxacan authorities, almost eight years after the double crime, only six people have been arrested while seven arrest warrants have still not been applied. They also commented that “it is horrible that such atrocious crimes remain unpunished” because there are “insensitive authorities”. “The bureaucratic difficulties that the authorities have explained to us, in my opinion serve as an excuse”, Satu Hassi said.

In an interview with CIMAC news, both emphasized the fact that “the clause on Human Rights in the renewed free trade agreement signed by the State of Mexico and the European Union this month is not very broad. While companies that feel their rights affected can appeal to a Court, these measures do not exist in cases of human rights violations.”

For more informaton in Spanish:

Murat rechaza reunirse con eurodiputada, quienes alegan falta de diplomacia y crisis de derechos humanos (Página, 18 de febrero de 2018)

Reclaman “falta de voluntad” de autoridades en caso Bety Cariño (CIMAC Noticias, 17 de febrero de 2018)

For more informaton from SIPAZ:

Oaxaca/Nacional : Detienen a otro presunto implicado en el asesinato de los defensores Bety Cariño y Jyri Jaakola (1 de septiembre de 2017)

Oaxaca : 7 años de impunidad en el caso de Bety Cariño y Jyri Jaakkola (28 de abril de 2017)

Oaxaca: Parlamentarias europeas vuelven a denunciar impunidad en el caso del asesinato de Bety Cariño y Jyri Jaakkola (2 de marzo de 2017)

Oaxaca/Internacional : Suman 5 detenidos en el caso del asesinato de Bety Cariño y Jyri Jaakkola (2010) (15 de octubre de 2016)

Oaxaca: Three Members of CODEDI Ambushed and Murdered

February 26, 2018


On February 12th, three members of the Committee for the Defense of Indigenous Peoples (CODEDI) lost their lives and two were injured after an armed attack. One of the injured was the co-founder of CODEDI, Abraham Ramirez Vasquez.

The armed attack occurred when the members of the Committee traveled on the federal highway that connects the City of Oaxaca de Juarez with Puerto Angel after a meeting between CODEDI and government authorities in the capital.

The CODEDI blamed the state and federal government and the next day held a protest in Huatulco with a march and taking control of federal highway 200.

More than 100 social and civil organizations condemned the murder of the three indigenous defenders and demanded guarantees for Abraham Ramirez Vasquez. In addition, they called on the national and international community so that human rights defenders can carry out their work in conditions of security and equality. They also asked civil society to join the collective demand for the immediate clarification of these extrajudicial executions and to punish the material and intellectual authors.

For more information in Spanish:

CODEDI denuncia ataque armado, fallecen 3 jóvenes indígenas (Educa, 13 de febrero de 2018)

Denuncia sobre asesinatos a compañeros de CODEDI (CNI, 13 de febrero de 2018)

Marchan en Huatulco por asesinato de tres activistas (Quadratin, 14 de febrero de 2018)

Organizaciones sociales y civiles condenan la ejecución de 3 defensores indígenas en Oaxaca (Educa, 14 de febrero de 2018)

Matan a un hombre y dos niños en emboscada a comitiva indígena tras reunión con colaboradores de Murat (Proceso, 13 de febrero de 2018)


National–Mexico: CIG Accident and Suspension of Caravan

February 26, 2018


On February 14th, a van from the caravan of the Indigenous Council of Government (CIG in its Spanish acronym), which was going through Baja California Sur, suffered an accident and went off the road.

There were 11 members of the coordination of the CNI, members of the support networks for the CIG in Baja California Sur and the spokesperson Maria de Jesus Patricio Martinez (Marichuy) travelling in the vehicle.

The CNI regretfully informed that compañera Eloisa Vega Castro of the South Californian Network of Support for the CIG lost her life in the accident. In addition, other passengers suffered fractures and serious injuries. The spokeswoman, Marichuy, had an arm fracture and inflammation of the head but is now stable. The victims were treated at Hospital 5 of the Mexican Social Security Institute of Guerrero Negro, before being transferred in two helicopters of the Mexican Armed Forces, to the Salvatierra Hospital in the city of La Paz.

Due to the above, the CNI decided to suspend the route it had scheduled. They expressed thanks for the messages of solidarity and invited all to be aware of the updates on information on their social networks.

For more information in Spanish:

Información sobre el accidente de la caravana del CIG ocurrido hoy 14 de febrero (Congreso Nacional Indígena, 14 de febrero de 2018)


Caravana de Marichuy sufre accidente; una mujer murió, la aspirante sufrió fractura y será intervenida (Animal Político, 14 de febrero de 2018)

Guerrero: Conflict at Mine of Canadian Company Torex Gold Resources

February 17, 2018

GoldPhoto @ Proceso

Since November 3rd, 2017, according to information from Proceso, a group of workers of the Media Luna mining company, part of the Canadian company Torex Gold Resources, have been on strike to “demand the change of ownership of their collective work contract, which is currently held by the Confederation of Workers of Mexico (CTM in its Spanish acronym).” The dissatisfied workers would like to join “the Napoleon Gomez Urrutia Union.”

Several newspapers reported that due to the problem that exists between the quarry workers and the mining company, three murders of employees of the mining company Media Luna have occurred to date. First on November 18, 2017 “Victor and Marcelino Sahuanitla were murdered and on January 24, Quintin Salgado, one of the leaders of the strike against the mining company Media Luna, was assassinated when he left his house in Nuevo Balsas, municipality of Cocula in Guerrero.”

According to the newspaper La Jornada de Guerrero, the national leaders of the National Mining Union, Sergio Beltran Reyes and Benito Melo Gonzalez, later denounced Salgado’s murder; “Comrade Quintin Salgado of the Media Luna mine, was cowardly murdered by the CTM of Guerrero and organized crime and we hope that the government of Canada, which is more interested in solving this situation, can put a stop to this company which, in addition to allowing them to take away our wealth, our authorities also allow you to assault, murder and violate the rule of law in our country, our workers and our organization Miners of Mexico.”

On January 27th, state and federal agents as well as soldiers took control of the facilities of the Canadian mining company Media Luna and practically broke the strike that the workers held. The military operation resulted in “the release of the security chief of the mining company Media Luna and seven workers who had allegedly been retained by the workers,” Proceso reported.

In a statement, the Mexican Network of People Affected by Mining (REMA in its Spanish acronym) mentioned that “this problem has a framework, and it is the current federal and state policy of delivery of resources and unrestricted and servile support to domestic and foreign companies that impose this type of exploitation, affecting the territories irreversibly in environmental, social and health terms. Once installed, the companies, as part of the multiple devastation they generate, place their local workers in conditions of intensive exploitation, violating their rights with government support. It is important to point out that the above once again highlights:

  1. The clear link between these companies and the criminal groups’ “gunmen” that they finance for their protection, and
  2. That at the request of a transnational company, the state sends its army and its police not to put the project at risk with greater direct foreign investment in the state of Guerrero.”

It should be recalled that, since March 2016, “Proceso warned about the risk of mining projects promoted by the government of Hector Astudillo in a strip of the state where the narcos [drug cartels] control everything.”

For more information in Spanish:

Quintín Salgado Salgado fue ultimado a balazos en las inmediaciones de su casa en Cocula, Guerrero. (Regeneración, 24 de enero de 2018)

Empleados de firma canadiense, hermanos asesinados en Guerrero: Sindicato Minero (La Jornada, 23 de noviembre de 2017)

Asesinan a prestador de servicios de Media Luna que simpatizaba con los paristas (La Jornada de Guerrero, 25 de enero de 2018)

Rescatan 8 personas privada de su libertad en Minera Media Luna (Debate, 27 de enero de 2018)

Ejército y agentes toman el control de minera Media Luna en Guerrero (Proceso, 27 de enero de 2018)

For more information from SIPAZ:

Guerrero: ONG emite Acción Urgente para proteger Evelia Bahena García, Diana Coralina Brito y Félix Rodríguez Navarrete (10 de agosto de 2015)

Guerrero/México/América Latina: Graves cuestionamientos a Goldcorp y empresas mineras canadienses (29 de abril de 2014)

Chiapas/México/América Latina: Violación de derechos por empresas mineras (25 de abril de 2012)

National: Biodiversity Law – Protection for Megaprojects (Greenpeace)

February 17, 2018

GreenpeacePhoto @ Greenpeace México

Civil society groups and experts have expressed their grave concerns about the Biodiversity Law, which, according to Sin Embargo MX, was approved “in a rush” by 88 senators on December 15th, “in the middle of another controversial discussion: the Law of Internal Security.” The unexpected and surprising approval of the said Law has caused controversies in several points highlighted in multiple public denunciations by civil society.

In the first place, Greenpeace Mexico strongly criticized the fact that “this approval was carried out in a surprising manner and without the broad consultation demanded by society, as mandated by human rights standards.” In addition, the representative in Mexico of the Center for Biodiversity, Alejandro Olivera Bonilla, highlighted that the main promoter of the Biodiversity Law, Senator Ninfa Salinas Sada, of the Green Ecologist Party of Mexico (PVEM), is responsible for the promotion of extractive projects throughout the country. He stated in an interview with Sin Embargo MX that, “we detected that there is a conflict of interest, given that Senator Ninfa Salinas Sada has an interest in open-pit metallurgical mining projects in Mexico. Based on the contents of the initiative, such as the weakening of protected natural areas (PNA) to allow this type of activities that are the most destructive, this conflict of interest is evident.”

Greenpeace Mexico identified four key points as to why this new law would not represent protection, but rather a threat to biodiversity in Mexico:

  • “The limited protection of genetic resources and their commercialization, which could exacerbate conflicts associated with the access and distribution of benefits to local communities or indigenous peoples;
  • The lack of clarity in terms of consultation and citizen participation, because the spaces proposed in this sense are poorly designed and do not fulfill the function of being real mechanisms of deliberation;
  • That in its transitory articles there are exceptions that open the possibility for the commercial use of marine mammals;
  • In addition, the prohibition of high-impact activities, such as mining and power generation is not established in protected natural areas, so that the new law, instead of protecting biodiversity, protects the interests of the proponents [of megaprojects].”

For more information in Spanish:

Ley de Biodiversidad es un regalo para la minería y el fracking, y un atentado a la ecología, alertan (SinEmbargo MX, 5 de febrero de 2018)

Biodiversidad o minería, ¿dilema? (El Universal, 3 de febrero de 2018)

Madrugan Grupo Salinas y Partido Verde con Ley de Biodiversidad (Greenpeace México, 19 de diciembre de 2017)

For more information from SIPAZ:

Chiapas: Acacoyagua prohibe la actividad minera en su territorio (22 de enero de 2018)

Nacional: Más aprobaciones controvertidas de Leyes Mexicanas (20 de dieciembre de 2017)

Nacional: Senado aprueba Ley de seguridad interior (16 de diciembre de 2017)

Guerrero: Ayotzinapa Case: Meeting with Council of Federal Judiciary and 5th Official Visit of the Follow-up Mechanism of the IACHR

February 17, 2018

AyotziPhoto: @ SIPAZ archive

On February 6th, a commission of mothers and fathers of the 43 students of student teachers from Ayotzinapa, disappeared in 2014, met with members of the Plenary Council of the Federal Judiciary (CJF in its Spanish acronym) to ask them to review the correct application of the law by judges of the Judicial power of the Federation. The Minister of the Supreme Court of Justice of the Nation, Luis Maria Aguilar Morales, said that while they would not tell the judges what they should do, they could seek to make them “impartial, honest, and not be afraid”.

On another note, on February 6th and 7th, members of the Special Follow-up Mechanism of the IACHR also met with the fathers and mothers of the 43 and held meetings with officials of the federal government, within the framework of the 5th official visit of the Mechanism. It was agreed that at the 167th session of the international commission, which will be held from February 22nd to March 2nd in Bogota, Colombia, the schedule of activities of the Special Follow-up Mechanism for 2018 will be defined, with the idea of ​​achieving progress and substantive actions that lead to truth and justice, and give certainty about the whereabouts of the missing students. They also spoke with the representative of the High Commission of Nations in Mexico, Jan Jarab.

The mechanism expressed concern about the lack of significant progress. It indicated that almost a month ago, the IACHR sent a questionnaire with more than 100 specific questions on the subject to the Mexican government, which has not yet been answered completely.

For more nformation in Spanish:

Boletín de prensa | Se reúne Comité de padres y madres de los 43 con el Consejo de la Judicatura Federal (Centro de Derechos Humanos de la Montaña Tlachinollan, 7 de febrero de 2018)

Jueces del caso Ayotzinapa actuarán “de manera independiente frente a cualquier presión”: CJF (Proceso, 7 de febrero de 2018)

CIDH apremia a que se den conclusiones del caso Ayotzinapa (La Jornada, 8 de febrero de 2018)

Sin avances significativos, investigación sobre los 43: comisionados de la CIDH (La Jornada, 8 de febrero de 2018)

For more information from SIPAZ:

Guerrero: Ayotzinapa, tercera audiencia de oficio en la CIDH: “el gobierno federal no quiere resolver el caso” (26 de octubre de 2017)

Guerrero: Sesión de seguimiento de la CIDH del caso Ayotzinapa : avances nulos (10 de julio de 2017)