National: Interior Security Law Passed amidst Protests

LawPhoto @ Regeneracion

On November 30th, the Interior Security Law was passed by the Chamber of Deputies, with 248 votes in favor, 115 against and 48 abstentions. This law that aims to regulate the actions of the armed forces in public security work has been strongly questioned by civil organizations and opposition parties that believe that it would militarize the country even more and that it would open the door to more human rights violations.

Among other aspects, the Interior Security Law establishes the procedure by which the president may order the intervention of the armed forces when “threats to internal security” are identified and when the capacities of the federal or local police forces are insufficient to face them. In the possible safeguards, article 7 establishes that “the acts carried out by the authorities for the application of this Law shall be subject, at all times and without exception, to the unrestricted preservation of human rights and their guarantees”.

The Institutional Revolutionary Party (PRI) justified its support for the Law by arguing that “for no reason” will social protest mobilizations will be the target of the law, and that it will seek to guarantee the protection of human rights. The previous day, President Enrique Peña Nieto had expressed that “I trust that the Congress of the Union will address with the urgency that is required this important initiative that will provide greater certainty to the Armed Forces and Mexican society.”

The National Commission of Human Rights (CNDH in its Spanish acronym) expressed its concern about the progress of this Law. The representative of the High Commissioner for Human Rights in Mexico, Jan Jarab, warned that its approval “petrifies” the situation of violence and human rights violations, “You need (…) a true evaluation of how the strategy (of militarization of public security) worked for ten years, and that those who want to continue with it or legislate to continue, explain why they are convinced that it worked.” National and international civil organizations strongly questioned its wording and approval. Amnesty International Mexico stated that the approval marks “a day of backsliding for human rights.” It expressed that “We cannot allow the participation of the armed forces in police work to be normalized, since we have documented the violations of human rights that prevail under the sustained use of the armed forces for decades; on the contrary, one has to think about a progressive retirement along with a professionalization of the police.” In a statement #SeguridadSinGuerra said: “We categorically oppose the issuance of a law or reforms that allow federal, state and municipal authorities to continue evading their constitutional responsibilities in matters of public safety.”

For more information in Spanish:

Ley de Seguridad Interior ya es una “imperiosa necesidad”, dice Peña Nieto a legisladores (Proceso, 29 de noviembre de 2017)

Diputados sellan cobertura legal a militares en tareas de seguridad pública; activistas los acusan de “golpistas” (Proceso, 30 de noviembre de 2017)

Aval a Ley de Seguridad Interior “petrifica” la situación de violencia y abuso a derechos: ONU-DH (Proceso, 30 de noviembre de 2017)

Diputados aprueban en lo general ley de seguridad interior (Animal Político, 30 de noviembre de 2017)

8 puntos clave de la Ley de Seguridad Interior aprobada por los diputados (Animal Político, 30 de noviembre de 2017)

Cronología de la militarización: cómo fue que se aprobó la Ley de Seguridad Interior (Hufftington Post, 1ero de diciembre de 2017)

For more information from SIPAZ:

Nacional/Internacional: WOLA evidencia el alto grado de impunidad ante violaciones a derechos humanos por soldados en México (8 de noviembre de 2017)

Nacional : cierre de año legislativo con agenda polémica en el Congreso (18 de diciembre de 2016)

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