International/National: UN High Commissioner for Human Rights Expresses Concern over Unresolved Issues in Mexico

UNMichelle Bachelet (UNO News)

On September 4th, the United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights Michelle Bachelet expressed concern about the “terrible” situation of journalists and human rights defenders in Mexico at a press conference in Geneva, Switzerland. She recalled that the Office of the High Commissioner in Mexico (UNHCHR) has “documented the murder of 11 journalists and 13 human rights defenders this year, an analysis was made on the Protection Mechanism for Journalists and Defenders and (…) We gave 104 recommendations to the government to strengthen it.” Bachelet called on the government of Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador (AMLO) to take them into account. Likewise, she expressed concern about the increase in violence in the country, in particular for femicides and the situation of women and girls in general.

On the issue of migration, she commented that “another alarming thing (…) is that on the border with the United States more than 332 people have died or disappeared since early 2019 and 24 of them are children. We don’t know if they were kidnapped, trafficked or enslaved.” She clarified that “when migration is restricted, it must always be in accordance with certain international standards.” She said that “countries like the United States are adopting policies that put people in a more vulnerable situation” underlining that “unfortunately the separation of families continues and hundreds of children in the United States are still being held there and we have also received reports of this in Mexico , but we don’t have figures yet (regarding Mexico).”

As regards the National Guard, she mentioned that “we are about to increase our collaboration with Mexican institutions in the implementation of the agreement with the National Guard.”

She also addressed the issue of disappearances, with 40,000 missing and 23,000 bodies that remain unidentified “due to the forensic crisis.” She recognized the announcement of the AMLO government to accept the competence of the UN Committee on forced disappearances to receive individual communications as a “step forward.”

In this regard, Erika Guevara Rosas, director of Amnesty International for the Americas, also stated: “The announcement of the Mexican government is an important sign of its will to achieve justice, truth, and reparation in cases of forced disappearance in the country. This issue, which for years has put a shadow on human rights in Mexico, requires all the efforts and resources available to find a solution.” For her part, Tania Reneaum, Executive Director of Amnesty International Mexico, said that “it is a good step towards the recognition of the responsibility of the State in the disappearance of people, and we hope it will be the beginning of a path to the certainty to which the more than 40 thousand families that continue to suffer the pain of uncertainty have a right”

For more information in Spanish:

ONU-DH: “Terrible”, la situación de periodistas y defensores en México; pide acatar recomendaciones (Proceso, 4 de septiembre de 2019)

ONU expresa preocupación ante ausencia de consultas a pueblos indígenas en México (Proceso, 4 de septiembre de 2019)

El mundo se aleja poco a poco de las soluciones globales para los problemas mundiales (ONU Noticias, 4 de septiembre de 2019)

México: Autoridades dan importante paso al anunciar que aceptarán la competencia del Comité de la ONU sobre desapariciones forzadas (Amnistía Internacional, 30 de agosto de 2019)

Acepta gobierno federal participación de comité de la ONU contra las Desapariciones Forzadas (Aristegui Noticias, 30 de agosto de 2019)

For more information from SIPAZ:

National/International: UNO Presents Diagnostic of Protection Mechanism of Human Rights Defenders and Journalists (September 2, 2019)

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)

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