Chiapas: Primero de Agosto Displaced Families Report Enclosure of their Lands

April 21, 2016

Primero.pngDisplacement camp at Primero de Agosto, Photo @ Radio Zapatista

On April 14, the displaced of Primero de Agosto in the municipality of Las Margaritas made a public statement denouncing the barbed wiring of part of the land of Primero de Agosto where they lived and from where they were displaced on February 23, 2015. According to their statement, they were provoked by ejidatarios from Miguel Hidalgo, members of the Independent Center of Agricultural Workers and Campesinos-Historical (CIOAC-H) on April 7 and 8 “carrying firearms, machetes, and all uniformed with PRD yellow caps (sic).”

They also reported that intimidation around their camp continues. After the events of April 7 and 8, on the morning of April 9, the authorities of the region passed by performing violent acts on cows and a bull “eight meters from where we are displaced.” The displaced of Primero de Agosto blamed the three levels of government, noting that the members of CIOAC-H from Miguel Hidalgo are “protected and backed by the governments that don’t do anything, that don’t say anything.” It should be mentioned that on February 25 last year, the State Government of Chiapas committed itself to dividing the lands in equal parts. Nevertheless, the lands have not been divided one year later and the inhabitants remain displaced. They reported that to this date the state government “hasn’t fulfilled anything, on the contrary, it has allowed the situation to get worse. The Mexican State has ignored the case.”

For more information in Spanish:

CIOAC-Histórica cerca tierras de familias desplazadas de Primero de Agosto (Chiapas Denuncia Publica, 14 de abril de 2016)

For more information from SIPAZ

Chiapas: Desplazados del Poblado Primero de Agosto denunciaron escalamiento de hostigamiento, amenazas de muerte y desalojo (7 de enero de 2016)

Chiapas: 8 meses de “amenazas y hostigamiento” a tojolabales en desplazamiento forzado del poblado Primero de Agosto (5 de noviembre de 2016)

Chiapas: Red por la Paz denuncia actitud omisa del gobierno de Chiapas ante caso de Primero de Agosto (16 de julio de 2015)


Guerrero/National AFAT and IGIE Respond to the Conclusions on Fire at Dump in Cocula

April 16, 2016

43.pngThe search continues. Photo: @Mujeres y La Sexta

On April 1, the Attorney General of the Republic and a representative of the panel of experts on the dynamics of fire caused controversy at a press conference where they shared preliminary conclusions on the possibility that the 43 missing students from Ayotzinapa had been burned at the dump at Cocula. Dr. Ricardo Damian Torres, from the panel of experts, confirmed that it is possible that the 43 were incinerated in the said dump given that “there was a controlled fire of huge proportions at the place called the dump of Cocula” and that “at least 17 adult humans were burned at that place.” According to Damian Torres, this allows for the establishment of a hypothesis that there was a massive cremation of 43 bodies, but that “this possibility could only be confirmed with large scale proof.”

Both the Argentinian Forensic Anthropology Team (AFAT) and the Interdisciplinary Group of Independent Experts (IGIE) doubted the hypothesis of the Attorney General. On the one hand, the AFAT – which also confirmed that there had been cremation of human bodies at the dump – pointed out that the analysis of the panel of experts “neither confirms nor denies the Attorney General’s hypothesis” as it could not determine when the fire occurred, if it was a question of one or various cremations, nor did it manage to identify the human remains found. On the other hand, the members of the IGIE dubbed the press conference as “a unilateral action against previous agreements” and were of the opinion that the preliminary two-and-a-half page report “lacks answers to a number of technical questions that been made to the judges at the outset of their work.” Like the AFAT, the IGIE were of the opinion that the report had few novelties on the Iguala case but that the public presentation had not been agreed neither with the relatives of the disappeared nor with the IGIE, which “demonstrated great irresponsibility and little sensitivity as regards the rights of the victims.”

For more information in Spanish:

Nuevo peritaje: hubo 17 quemados; se atiza pugna PGR-GIEI por Cocula (Excelsior, 6 de abril de 2016)

EAAF emite opinión sobre peritaje de Cocula (Centro de Derechos Humanos de la Montaña Tlachinollan, 2 de abril de 2016)

Equipo Argentino de Antropología forense (EAAF) presenta peritaje sobre caso Ayotzinapa; confirma la imposibilidad científica de la “verdad histórica” oficial (Centro Prodh, 9 de febrero de 2016)

For more information from SIPAZ:

Guerrero: Familiares de los 43 emprenden caravana de búsqueda a Iguala (7 de marzo de 2016)

Guerrero: Padres y madres de Ayotzinapa van a la Corte, a 16 meses de la desaparición de sus hijos  (27 de enero de 2016)

Guerrero: ONG y expertos en derechos humanos respaldan labor del GIEI en caso Ayotzinapa (25 de enero de 2016)


National: Launch of National Campaign in Defense of Mother Earth and Territory

April 15, 2016

EarthNational Campaign in Defense of Mother earth and Territory. @defensamadretierra

On April 10, the National Campaign in Defense of Mother Earth and Territory was launched in Mexico City to defend territory and combat the disinformation that exists in the country as regards dispossession. This campaign, made up of 179 organizations, collectives and associations, has three objectives for November 20 of this year: share struggles and stories of defense of Mother Earth to show how it is being destroyed and the importance of defending it; denounce how the destruction “is giving profits to the men of money, Mexican and foreign, and they call this predatory profit development and progress”; and also to make known alternative ways of life and government to show that “another way of life in society respecting Mother earth and our brothers” is possible.

The members of the campaign call on all towns, communities, neighborhoods and suburbs that suffer dispossession, destruction of Mother Earth caused by mining, petrol, and forestry projects, or that make water a merchandise; that struggle against agrochemicals, mono-cultivation, and preserve native seeds; that are being affected by pollution; that struggle against the privatization of beaches, mangrove swamps, lakes, forests and protected natural areas, to carry out actions as part of this campaign.

For more information in Spanish:

En defensa de la madre tierra (La jornada, 14 de abril 2016)
Invitan a sumarse a la Campaña Nacional en Defensa de la Madre Tierra (Regeneración, 12 de abril 2016)
Convocatoria Campaña en Defensa de la Madre Tierra y el Territorio (Serapaz, 11 de abril de 2016)
Alistan campaña en defensa de la tierra; realizarán acto en el Monumento a la Revolución (Proceso, 8 de abril 2016)


Oaxaca: Morena Regional Leader Murdered

April 9, 2016

QuirozThe leader of Morena in the Coast Region, Enrique Quiroz Quiroz @ Oaxacamira

On the night of Friday, April 1, Enrique Quiroz Quiroz was murdered. He was the coordinator of the Movement for National Regeneration (Morena) party in the Coast Region of Oaxaca State and was an active militant. The killing took place after 7 pm at the entrance to San Andres de Huaxtaltepec municipality according to information from the State Public Prosecutor. Quiroz received at least four shots from unidentified [gunmen].

This murder follows that of the reporter Marcos Hernandez Bautista on January 21 last in the same municipality and potential Morena candidate for mayor. The general secretary of the Morena state committee, Sesul Bolaños, demanded from “the state and federal authorities the investigation of these events that muddy the electoral process of June 5.” Sesul Bolaños declared, “We don’t dare to say that it is a campaign against Morena, but we have to highlight that it the second crime in the same region and in the same municipality.” He considered it “alarming that there is a climate of insecurity and uncertainty on the eve of elections.”

For more information in Spanish:

Asesinan en Oaxaca a líder regional de Morena (La Jornada, 02 de abril de 2016)

Ejecutan a seis hombres en Oaxaca, uno era militante de Morena y otro del PRD (Proceso, 02 de abril de 2016)

Morena condena asesinato de Enrique Quiroz Quiroz (Vanguardia, 02 de abril de 2016)

Un policía, presunto asesino del periodista Marcos Hernández (Proceso, 25 de febrero de 2016)

For more information from SIPAZ:

Chiapas: Allanan domicilio de regidor de Morena en San Cristóbal de Las Casas (31 de marzo de 2016)

Oaxaca: “Levantan” y ejecutan a líder triqui representante de Morena (13 de enero de 2015)


Oaxaca/Chiapas/National: Oxfam Presents Inequality Report

April 9, 2016

Oxfam.pngPhoto @ Oxfam

According to the international NGO Oxfam, the growing inequality crisis has become a recurring theme on international agendas due to the effects that this has on the world population. Mexico, Oaxaca and Chiapas are examples of this. On March 31, a group of researchers from the Autonomous University of Chiapas (UNACH in its Spanish acronym), from the Isitame Collective and from Oxfam Mexico presented the report “Inequality and Social Exclusion in Chiapas, a Long Term View.” Specifically, the document seeks to “find a reason for the inequalities in Mexico that different regions of the country experience, from territorial to local constructions as well as the solutions that can be locally outlined.” The report points out that Chiapas is considered to be “the state with the highest concentration of population in conditions of poverty and extreme poverty. As a result of a historical process of high rates of population growth, recurring crises and economic stagnation, a vicious circle of poverty and inequality has been generated, which reports the highest levels in all areas of poverty and inequality in the entity.” Jorge Alberto Lopez Arevalo, one of the researchers, commented that between 1995 and 2014 almost 40 million dollars have been invested in Social Development in Chiapas, a shocking figure, but poverty has not diminished. On the contrary, it is on the increase. ” We can say that this is the failure of social policy”, he said.

Extreme Inequality and Development Tendencies. The Case of the Oaxaca State” was also presented in the report, produced in collaboration between Services for an Alternative Education (Servicios para una Educación Alternativa A.C. – EDUCA) and Oxfam Mexico in Oaxaca State on March 29. According to the report, Oaxaca not only suffers from income poverty but also lack of social rights, which prevents equal access to development opportunities for the population. According to the study carried out, “this poverty and inequality favored the growth of drug addiction and alcoholism among the inhabitants.” Although the report does not specifically address inequality among women, it reveals that some elements of social policy, such as those aimed at empowering women, in fact increase work duties for them while other programs also increase their responsibilities. It also evaluates mega-projects and points out that the refinery at Salina Cruz, for example, has not had an impact on the welfare of the population and that wind farm projects have resulted in the dispossession of lands in the region of Tehuantepec Isthmus.

Ricardo Fuentes of Oxfam Mexico said that there is a growing tendency of inequality and that it is a world phenomenon that Oxfam has been warning about since 2014, when they revealed that 85 people possess more wealth than half of the population of the world. As a result of their analysis they published the document “Extreme Inequality. Concentration of Economic and Political Power” in June 2015, in which they warned about the gap between those who have everything and those who have nothing.

For more information in Spanish:

Más de 20 años de millonaria de derrama económica y Chiapas sigue igual de pobre (Chiapas Paralelo, 1 de abril de 2016)

Presentaron diagnóstico de desigualdad social (Cuarto Poder, 1 de abril de 2016)

Millones de dólares y la pobreza sigue en Chiapas: OXFAM (Areópago, 1 de abril de 2016)

Megaproyectos, desigualdad en Oaxaca: OXFAM (IstmoPress, 31 de marzo de 2016)

Oaxaca un estado de desigualdad extrema (SEM México, 30 de marzo de 2016)

Informe Desigualdad Extrema y Tendencias de Desarrollo. El Caso del Estado de Oaxaca, México (EDUCA, 29 de marzo de 2016)

For more information from SIPAZ

Nacional: Múltiples críticas a la presentación del Tercer Informe de Gobierno de Peña Nieto (8 de septiembre de 2015)

Chiapas: Foro “Defendiendo la esperanza y la autonomía desde el Sureste mexicano” (28 de junio de 2013)

México: crece pobreza en el país, en particular en zonas urbanas. Oaxaca, Chiapas y Guerrero con mayor índice de pobres. Campaña por la ratificación del PF PIDESC (9 de diciembre de 2011)


Nestora Salgado Launches Campaign to Demand Release of Political Prisoners

April 7, 2016

Nestora.pngCall to the campaign. Photo: @Regeneración

On March 18 last, Nestora Salgado, commander of the Olinala Community Police, Guerrero, member of the Regional Coordinator of Communitty Authorities (CRAC in its Spanish acronym), was released after two years and eight months in prison. On leaving prison, Nestora called on the Government of Guerrero to release the nine members of CRAC who are still prisoners and assured that she would begin a campaign “for the freedom” of her compañeros. For April 10, International Day of Political Prisoners, she called for actions within the framework of the national campaign “Put a Face and Name on the Political Prisoners in Mexico”, to give visibility to the situation of prisoners and demand their release. She stated that, “We are missing 500 political prisoners and I’m going to fight to get them out. I am going to get the release of my compañeros. I will go wherever I have to because I am with you in your struggle and in all the struggles of the people.

Nestora added that only together will the citizens be able to achieve change, justice and the freedom of their compañeros and of those in the rest of the country. She intends to travel to other countries to “exhume what has been buried and give voice to the silenced.” According to El Sur newspaper, social organizations also denounced “the grave crisis of human rights in Mexico and the criminalization of those who defend territory, education, land, water, the air and life. For this reason they have called [on people] to join Salgado’s movement and international tour. “We are aware that Mexico is suffering the most ruthless attack by the interests of foreign capital. Currently the territories of indigenous peoples are pillaged and (their inhabitants) are being displaced from their lands through the violence of paramilitary groups, by organized crime, or the territory is being militarized by soldiers and the state police” as is outlined on the call.

It is worth noting that the social leader returned to her home in Seattle, USA. In Washington she visited the International Clinic of Human Rights of the Faculty of Law of Washington University, where she started the campaign. The clinic played an important role in the struggle for the Nestora’s release. During her stay in the US, the commander from Olinala plans to visit Los Angeles, New York, Chicago and Washington. She intends to return to Guerrero soon as she is the representative of the Community Police and due to her post in CRAC.

For more information in Spanish:

Nestora Salgado convoca a campaña “Ponle rostro y nombre a las y los presos políticos en México” (Regeneración, 30 de marzo de 2016)

Nestora y los presos políticos de la CRAC (La Jornada, 29 de marzo de 2016)

Lanza Nestora Salgado una campaña para exigir la libertad de los presos políticos de México (El Sur, 28 de marzo de 2016)

Video de la campaña “Ponle rostro y nombre a las y los presos políticos en México” (YouTube, 25 de marzo de 2016)

Emprende Nestora Salgado campaña en EU por presos políticos (La Jornada, 22 de marzo de 2016)

“Nos faltan 500 presos políticos y yo voy a luchar por sacarlos”: Nestora Salgado (Aristegui Noticias, 18 de marzo de 2016)

For more information from SIPAZ:

Guerrero: Nestora Salgado en libertad (18 de marzo de 2016)

Nacional/Guerrero: Exhorta ONU al gobierno mexicano a liberar a Nestora Salgado (24 de febrero de 2016)

Chiapas/Nacional: Jornada nacional e internacional por presos políticos del 6 al 13 de diciembre (15 de diciembre de 2015)

Guerrero: presos de la Policia Comunitaria “son presos políticos”, según general Gallardo (16 de julio de 2014)

Guerrero: Denuncian CRAC y habitantes de Papaxtla allanamientos violentos y decomisos (1 de junio de 2015)


Chiapas: Home of Morena’s director in San Cristobal ransacked

April 2, 2016

Morena.png

Image of Carlos Herrera’s ransacked home. Photo:@Entiemporeal

On March 25 last Carlos Herrera’s home, the director of Morena in Chiapas, was ransacked. “Things were messed up, thrown around, it was obvious that they had rummaged through the whole place, there were scattered papers”, the victim declared in a statement. There was no theft of objects which was interpreted as “an intimidating message, because we are public servants who belong to the Morena party, upholding the law, standing up for the people, we have shown abuses and denounced irregularities.”

The director attributed this security incident to his struggle in the [party] branch, after its closure by the government of the Ecologist Green Party of Mexico (Partido Verde Ecologista de México – PVEM). In the statement he recalled the attack on human rights defenders and reporters that took place on March 16 when citizens demanded their right to participate in the branch, which “caused a group to destroy part of the building which hadn’t even been inaugurated, blaming our group Morena, without any proof.”

It also mentioned the homicide of the teacher and leader of the Independent Confederation of Organizations, Civil Association (Confederación Independiente de Organizaciones, Asociación Civil – CIO-AC), Juan Carlos Jimenez Velasco, who was murdered on March 24. It is worth remembering that the statement released by the National Coordinator of Education Workers (CNTE) confirmed that Jimenez Velasco was attacked by a group of hooded men and that previously he had received threats from members of the Association of Leaseholders of the Traditional Markets of Chiapas (ALMETRACH). The CNTE defined ALMETRACH as a “paramilitary group” at the service of the municipal government of the PVEM.

Carlos Herrera described the situation in which the municipality and the state live as “lamentable” and which “is being aggravated.” This being the case, he asked for cautionary measures to guarantee his safety.

 For more information in Spanish:

Allanan domicilio de regidor de Morena en Chiapas; lo atribuye a represalias por sus acciones en el cabildo (Revolución Tres Punto Cero, 26 de marzo de 2016)

Allanan vivienda de Carlos Herrera, regidor de Morena en Chiapas (Vortice, 26 de marzo de 2016)

 For more information from SIPAZ:

Chiapas: Asesinaron a líder indígena en San Cristóbal de Las Casas (30 de marzo de 2016)


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