Chiapas: New threats against residents of Primero de Agosto

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Photo @komanilel.org

“Today we have suffered 30 days of displacement, illness, and having to live under trees covered by a piece of plastic, in inhuman conditions.  These have been 30 difficult days in which we have demanded the government’s response, but it has not done anything.  We have suffered threats and pain,” said the 57 people who have been displaced for a month in the border jungle region in Chiapas.

In a communiqué released on 23 March, the Fray Bartolomé de Las Casas Center for Human Rights (CDHFBC) denounced new threats of attack and forcible displacement against residents of the Primero de Agosto community, Las Margaritas municipality.  A month after their forced displacement by members of the Independent Historical Campesino and Agricultural Worker Organization (CIOAC-H), the Tojolabal families still “find themselves vulnerable, under threat, and at risk of new attacks […].  The government of Manuel Velasco has not taken up its responsibility and commitments to the displaced families.  Instead, it has provided State protection to CIOAC-H members, as can be seen in the impunity in which all the legal denunciations made by the displaced find themselves […].  The events of 23 February 2015 led to a forcible displacement, even when State officials knew about the attacks and threats of displacement.  To date, the authorities charged with making justice have not clarified the events or arrested anyone for the aforementioned crimes.

The CDHFBC indicated as well that it has information that “there exists a new threat against the life of Antonio Roman López, whom CIOAC-H leaders have indicated as having been in the presence of Frayba members and State authorities, and thus as the leader of the residents.  Similarly, they threat the families from Primero de Agosto with a new displacement from where they actually find themselves.”  Due to all this, the CDHFBC denounced “the failure of the governments to provide protection and to guarantee human rights, as is stipulated in the Law for the Prevention of and Attention to Internal Displacement in Chiapas State, which lacks reality and is in fact quite dead.  Its content recognizes the fundamental rights of displaced peoples in the state, which have not been applied since its entry into law in February 2012.”

For more information (in Spanish):

Boletín de prensa del CDHFBC (23 de marzo de 2015)

#Chiapas Denuncia publica de la comunidad Primero de Agosto a un mes del #DesplazamientoForzado (Koman Ilel, 23 de marzo de 2015)

“Hoy cumplimos 30 días desplazados, viviendo bajo los árboles, cubiertos por un pedazo de plástico”, indígenas tojolabales (Pozol, 23 de marzo de 2015)

For more information from SIPAZ (in English):

Chiapas: Families of the Primero de Agosto community “in precarious conditions” (21 March 2015)

Chiapas: 57 Tojolabal indigenous people forcibly displaced from their community, Primero de Agosto (8 March 2015)

Chiapas: EZLN announces dates for the exchanges between Zapatistas and indigenous peoples of the CNI (12 June 2014)

Chiapas: Attacks on EZLN support bases leave one dead and 15 injured among Zapatistas (16 May 2014)

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