National: Forum advances legislative reforms for observance of San Andrés Accords on indigenous rights and culture

Foto: archivo SipazPhoto: SIPAZ archive

On Wednesday 26 February, there was held the Forum “Indigenous Rights and Legislative Harmonization” as organized by Jaime Martínez Veloz, head of the Commission for Dialogue with Indigenous Peoples (CDPI) from the Secretary of Governance, who affirmed that “Today, given the protection of new national and international laws regarding indigenous rights, there exists no valid argument to impede the observance of the San Andrés Accords (…) We meet in observance of a national context in which the indigenous peoples of Mexico reclaim a profound change in their relation with the Mexican State.  The San Andrés Accords are the result of a process of construction of greater horizontality and participation that we have experienced in the recent years of Mexican history.”

The forum was attended by 150 persons, 70 of them indigenous, who saw it necessary to harmonize the international laws which deal with indigenous affairs with the international accords ratified by Mexico.  In this way, they agreed on the need for the creation of a General Law on Free Prior and Informed Consent, that would allow indigenous people to know about the decisions and projects that affect their lands and natural resources.

Sebastián de la Rosa Peláez, president of the commission of the Center for Social Study and Public Opinion (CESOP) from the federal congress, indicated the necessity of creating a single law on the rights of indigenous peoples that would have constitutional validity.

There was agreement on the part of the participants to have the accords debated at the forum sent to the legislative bodies so as to take the necessary initiatives to have these constitutional reforms be realized and the rights of the indigenous recognized.

Beyond this, according to data from a CESOP poll, more than 70% of citizens perceive that little to nothing is done in favor of indigenous peoples.

For more information (in Spanish):

Los Acuerdos de San Andrés son un referente político, histórico y moral, coinciden expertos (La Jornada, 28 de febrero de 2014)

Los Acuerdos de San Andrés, sin obstáculos legales (La Jornada, 27 de febrero de 2014)

Analizan en foro pendientes con pueblos indígenas (Milenio, 27 de febrero de 2014)

Perciben ciudadanos que se hace poco por los pueblos indígenas (Diario rotativo, 26 de febrero de 2014)

For more information from SIPAZ (in English):

Chiapas: 18 years after the signing of the San Andrés Accords on Indigenous Rights and Culture, these continue not to be recognized by the State (1 March 2014)

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)

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