National: CNDH Requests Cautionary Measures for Cristobal Santiz Jimenez

March 30, 2020

Cristobal Santiz Jimenez@ Frayba

On March 26th, the National Human Rights Commission (CNDH) requested that the Governor of Chiapas, the Secretary General of the Government and the Secretary of Security and Citizen Protection of the state implement precautionary measures for Cristobal Santiz Jimenez, who has been deprived of his liberty since last March 14th at the State Center for Social Reintegration (CERSS) Number 14 “El Amate”. It should be noted that Cristobal Santiz Jimenez is a Tzotzil indigenous originating from the municipality of Aldama and a community defender and representative of the Permanent Commission of Communal and Displaced Peoples.

In this sense, the Fray Bartolome de Las Casas Center for Human Rights (Frayba) reported the defender’s human rights abuses and violations and requested, after the arrest, precautionary measures before the Inter-American Commission on Human Rights to protect the life and safety of Cristobal Santiz Jimenez and his family. Likewise, Frayba explains that his arrest “occurs in the context of criminalization and threats to his life, liberty, security and integrity due to the constant denunciations of the omission of the Mexican State in the escalation of violence in the Chiapas Highlands region”, and he has faced threats “from the Mexican State that demanded his silence in exchange for his freedom; as well as death threats by the armed paramilitary group of Santa Martha, Chenalho,” said Frayba on its NotiFrayba news site.

According to the CNDH press release, measures are requested “with respect to acts or omissions that could constitute violations of the victim’s human rights, including protection of life, integrity, personal security and health.”

For more information in Spanish:

Solicita CNDH a autoridades de Chiapas, medidas cautelares en favor del señor Cristóbal Sántiz Jiménez (CNDH, 26 marzo 2020)

CNDH solicita al gobierno de Chiapas medidas cautelares a favor del activista Cristóbal Sántiz (Proceso, 26 marzo 2020)

Urgimos la libertad de Cristóbal Sántiz Jiménez
(Frayba, 15 marzo 2020)

Exhorta CNDH al gobierno de Chiapas a salvaguardar la vida, integridad personal y seguridad de las comunidades indígenas en conflicto por la disputa de tierras
(CNDH, 26 marzo 2020)

For more information from SIPAZ:

Chiapas: Detienen a defensor comunitario de derechos humanos por presunto homicidio (March 17, 2020)

Chiapas: Authorities in Santa Martha and Aldama Denounce New Attacks (March 5, 2020)

Chiapas/National: Petition in Support of Injunction against Maya Train

March 23, 2020

DSCF5674© Sipaz

On March 16th, a press conference was held by the Fray Bartolome de Las Casas Center for Human Rights (Frayba), in which members of the Regional Indigenous and Popular Council of Xpujil (CRIPX), the municipal seat of Calakmul, Campeche, were present, as well as members of the Diocese of San Cristobal.

A pronouncement was made whereby they demanded that the federal authorities respect the rights of the Choles, Mayans, Tzotziles and Tzeltal communities affected by the Maya Train megaproject, which have been violated since the informative phase by not complying with international standards and by not presenting a study of the environmental, economic, social and cultural impacts of the projects.

In this sense, the human rights sector of ​​the diocese of San Cristobal launched an initiative in a show of support and solidarity with which 12,124 signatures were collected from 15 municipalities of Chiapas. When delivering, Virginia Diaz Rojas expressed: “we have become aware of the effects that all these projects bring […] In this way we are joining together to face all these projects that come to destroy our Mother Earth, our territories, to our cultures…”. Faced with this response, Ernesto Martinez Jimenez, member of the CRIPX, was very grateful and happy and affirmed that Chiapas was the first state to support them and made a call to the rest of the peninsular states to join the injunction case.

For more information in Spanish:

Comunidades Mayas rechazan megaproyectos que amenazan la Vida(CDH Fray Bartolomé de Las Casas, 16 de marzo de 2020)

Entregan firmas en solidaridad para juicio de amparo del Tren Maya (La Jornada, 16 de marzo de 2020)

Respaldan chiapanecos suspensión del Tren Maya (Diario de Chiapas, 17 de marzo de 2020)

For more information from SIPAZ :

National: Huge Contrast between Study of Maya Train Commissioned by National Council for Science and Technology (CONACYT) and Discourse of AMLO Government (March 19, 2020)

National/International: Consultation on Maya Train did not Meet International Standards (January 4, 2020)

National: Indigenous Consultation Participants Accept Maya Train Project; Convention 169 of ILO not Respected (January 4, 2020)

National: Bidding Process Begins for Maya Train without Previous Consultation with Indigenous Peoples (May 10, 2019)

Mexico: Consultations on Maya Train and Nine “Priority” Projects of New Government (December 13th, 2018)

National: AMLO Announces Consultation for the Construction of the Maya Train (November 14th, 2018)

Chiapas: Authorities in Santa Martha and Aldama Denounce New Attacks

March 5, 2020

Aldama1_IsaacGuzman_ChiapasPPhoto @ Pie de Pagina

In recent days, authorities of Aldama and Santa Martha denounced the resumption of attacks among residents, which have their origin in an old conflict over the dispute of 60 hectares of land in the border area between the two villages.

The municipal president of Aldama, Adolfo Lopez Gomez, and the Fray Bartolome de Las Centere for Casas Human Rights (Frayba) reported on “attacks with firearms from armed civilian paramilitary-type groups in the communities of Santa Martha, Chenalho” against inhabitants of the municipality of Aldama, with the result that “many families flee [again] to the mountains” where they are sheltered in existing camps from previous forced displacements that derive from the same problem. Frayba reported that, although on June 4th, in Tuxtla Gutierrez, constitutional and traditional authorities of Aldama and Chenalho, accompanied by Governor Rutilio Escandon Cadenas and the federal undersecretary of Human Rights, Alejandro Encinas Rodriguez, signed a non-aggression, attacks against residents of Aldama “have not stopped throughout 2019 and so far in 2020, given the complicity of federal and state governments.”

Meanwhile, according to information from Proceso, “Efrain Alvarez Velasco, president of the Commission, and Miguel Alvarez Lopez, municipal rural agent of Saclum, Santa Martha, accused their neighbors in Aldama of being the ones who initiated the shooting. Today in the morning, when three community members of Santa Martha were cutting coffee on their plots, located in the place known as Tulhuitz, one of them was injured by a gun at knee level, a person who responds to the name of Lorenzo Ruiz Hernandez, originally from the Saclum community.”

For more information in Spanish:

Pobladores de Aldama denuncian ataques armados de sus vecinos de Chenalhó (Proceso, 3 de marzo de 2020)

Hieren a indígena en Chiapas por disputa de tierras (La Jornada, 4 de marzo de 2020)

Alto riesgo a la vida e integridad de familias tsotsiles (Frayba, 4 de marzo de 2020)

Incursión armada obliga a comunidad de Chiapas a desplazarse (El Universal, 4 de marzo de 2020)

For more information from SIPAZ:

Chiapas: CNDH emite recomendación al gobierno del estado en caso de Aldama/Chenalhó (10 de octubre de 2019)

Chiapas: Sigue la violencia entre Aldama y Chenalhó a pesar de pacto de no agresión. (8 de junio de 2019)

Chiapas: Firman pacto de no agresión autoridades de Aldama y Chenalhó (5 de junio de 2019)

Chiapas: encuentran cuerpo del síndico de Aldama quien fungía como alcalde de dicho municipio (6 de mayo de 2019)

Chiapas: JBG de Oventik responsabiliza a gobierno de situación de violencia entre Aldama y Chenalhó (6 de febrero de 2019)

Chiapas: Ejército instala base militar para patrullar los municipios en conflicto de Aldama y Chenalhó (25 de enero de 2019)

Chiapas: One Dead and Two Wounded in Latest Confrontation in Aldama – Chenalho Conflict (January 29, 2019)

National: EZLN and CNI Hold Events on the First Anniversary of the Murder Samir Flores

February 25, 2020

samir1@Enlace zapatista

On February 20th and 21st, the Zapatista Liberation Army (EZLN) and organizations that are members of or close to the National Indigenous Congress (CNI) carried out dispersed actions in 20 states of Mexico and in at least seven other countries, one year after the murder by Samir Flores Soberanes, from Morelos, and within the framework of the “Day in Defense of Territory and Mother Earth”.

In Chiapas, thousands of indigenous support bases of the Zapatista Liberation Army (EZLN) mobilized to remember it and vindicate their struggle against extractive megaprojects in 11 caracoles, placing candles, offerings, banners and posters in rejection of said megaprojects and to demand justice in the murder of Samir and other land defenders in the country.

The Fray Bartolome de Las Casas Center for Human Rights (Frayba) said that, one year after the murder of the defender, “the risk to life, security and integrity of the defenders oh territory was increased, in Mexico (…) criminalization has also intensified against communities of indigenous peoples opposed to government projects, specifically those who belong to the National Indigenous Congress.”

On February 21st, the “March for Justice for Our Brother Samir Flores Soberanes”, for the dead, missing, prisoners and in Defense of Territory and Mother Earth was also held in Mexico City.

For more information in Spanish:

Pueblos y colectivos recordarán a Samir Flores con marchas, conversatorios y actividades culturales a un año de su asesinato (Desinformémonos, 18 de febrero de 2020)

Imágenes de la movilización zapatista iniciada la madrugada de este 20 de febrero en Defensa del Territorio y la Madre Tierra, por justicia para nuestr@s muert@s, nuestr@s desaparecid@s, nuestr@s pres@s y en contra de los megaproyectos de muerte. “SAMIR S (EZLN, 20 de febrero de 2020)

“Todos somos Samir”, proclama el EZLN en jornada de resistencia (Proceso, 20 de febrero de 2020)

Aumenta criminalización contra defensores de territorio: Frayba (La Jornada, 20 de febrero de 2020)

EZLN realiza concentraciones (Cuarto Poder, 20 de febrero de 2020)

EZLN se suma a manifestaciones a un año del asesinato del activista Samir Flores (Aristegui Noticias, 20 de febrero de 2020)

A un año del asesinato de Samir: ni justicia ni obras (Pie de Página 21 de febrero de 2020)

Abejas de Acteal exigen justicia para Samir Flores y todos los defensores asesinados en México (Desinformémonos, 21 de febrero de 2020)

Exigen justicia para Samir, con mural, altar y bloqueo en Oaxaca (Desinformémonos, 21 de febrero de 2020)

A un año del asesinato de Samir Flores, exigen justicia (La Jornada, 22 de febrero de 2020)


For more information from SIPAZ:

Chiapas/Mexico: EZLN, CNI and CIG Convene Actions in Defense of Territory and Mother Earth “We Are All Samir” (January 14, 2020)

Chiapas/National: Fourth Assembly of CNI-CIG Held in San Cristobal de Las Casas (January 13, 2020)

Chiapas/Nacional : CNI- CIG “vivimos la guerra del capital contra los pueblos del mundo”, convocatoria a la cuarta Asamblea Nacional (November 8, 2019)

Chiapas/National/International: EZLN Invitation to “Celebration of Life: December of Resistance and Rebellion” (November 10, 2019)

National/International: CNI Mobilizations for Global Day of Struggle in Defense of Life and our Territories – “SAMIR FLORES LIVES” (October 17, 2019)

Chiapas: Protesting Prisoners Begin Three-day Hunger Strike

February 9, 2020

On February 5th, it was announced at a press conference held at the Fray Bartolome de Las Casas Center for Human Rights that four indigenous prisoners from Chiapas began a hunger strike for three days on that day.

With this action they demand to speed up the review of their cases that are currently on the so-called Reconciliation Table and in the Mixed Court of Bochil, and then their release.

“They also demanded that their space of struggle be respected inside both prisons until their freedom is obtained; that the “psychological reprisals and threats of the prison director of San Cristobal, Jose Javier Sanchez Rios and Judge Maria Guadalupe Flores Rocha stop, as well as the provision of medicines and medical care in the corresponding área.”

The prisoners who started the three-day fast this morning are, Adrian Gomez Jimenez, and the brothers German and Abraham Lopez Montejo, who are imprisoned in San Cristobal prison and Marcelino Ruiz Gomez, interned in Comitan prison.

For more information in Spanish:

Con ayuno, presos tzotziles en Chiapas piden revisión de su expediente, La Jornada, 5 de febrero de 2020

Presos indígenas torturados inician huelga de hambre, chiapas paralelo, 5 de febrero de 2020

Denuncias de los presos: Chiapasdenuncia, 5 de febrero de 2020

video de la conferencia de presnsa 5 de febrero de 2020

audio de palabras de los presos, 5 de febrero de 2020

For more information from SIPAZ:

Chiapas: Prisoners in San Cristobal de Las Casas Denounce Theats and Negligence from Prison Authorities (January 28, 2020)

Chiapas: Death Threats against FRAYBA and Relatives of Prisoners (December 11, 2019)

Chiapas/International: Solidarios de la Voz del Amate Seeks Alliances with Other Processes in Latin America (December 6, 2019)

Chiapas: Freedom for Juan de la Cruz Ruiz (December 5, 2019)

Chiapas:Presos del Cerss 5 son amenazados de ser reubicados si no detienen su protesta (September 6, 2019)

Chiapas: Las Abejas de Acteal Celebrate 27th Anniversary

January 4, 2020

CD548C81-6DFF-475B-BD18-036EEDCEB6F3@Las Abejas de Acteal

On December 10th, Las Abejas de Acteal Civil Society Organization held an event in Chenalho to celebrate the 27th anniversary of its founding in 1992.

The event began in the morning with a ceremony remembering the 45 people who were killed in the 1997 massacre in Acteal. Then, there was a choir, a play and a presentation that recalled the story of the birth of the organization.

Several members of Las Abejas shared their experiences linked to the events that led to the foundation of the organization. Five compañeros had been imprisoned for acts they did not commit. In the process to free them from jail (which was achieved on January 7th, 1993), they chose to come together as a civil society.

At the event, representatives of several organizations attended, including Services and Advice for Peace A.C. (Serapaz), the Fray Bartolome de las Casas Center for Human Rights (Frayba), Otros Mundos A.C and the International Service for Peace (SIPAZ). The event was also broadcast via Las Abejas radio station.

On their 27 years of work, Las Abejas stressed that “the path of the organization has been thorny and tiring, but, with fasting and prayer and our conviction we have always found alternatives to overcome them. The path we have chosen is not a game, nor is it temporary, but it will continue with our young people, with our children, because we must always defend life and work for peace.”

Regarding the continuation of their work, they said that: “In the social and political context in which our organization was born, there was a lot of injustice, racist mestizos treated us like animals, political parties and bad governments treated us as objects. Currently we continue as native peoples in discrimination and social inequality, with injustice and impunity. Bad governments have not evolved, they have not improved their conscience, because the prisons are full of political prisoners, innocent people, poor people, people who do not speak Spanish, and are illegally locked up.”

On December 22nd, the 22nd anniversary of the 45 victims of the Acteal massacre will also be commemorated.

For more information in Spanish:

Un día como hoy, pero, hace 27 años, en el año de 1992, nació nuestra organización la que actualmente es conocida: Organización de la Sociedad Civil de Las Abejas de Acteal, Las Abejas de Acteal, 10 de diciembre de 2019.

La Abejas de Acteal celebrarán 27 años de fundación Prensa Libre Chiapas, 9 de diciembre de 2019.

Concejo de las Abejas de Acteal: indígenas no pedimos Tren Maya Político, 9 de diciembre de 2019.

For more information from SIPAZ:

Chiapas : Sociedad Civil Las Abejas denuncia allanamieno de su clínica en Acteal; Concejo Pacifista declara que es un “asunto entre particulares”; Sociedad Civil Las Abejas ratifica “por eso hemos rechazado la solución amistosa, porque traería división” . 23 de septiembre de 2019.

Chiapas: Marcha-peregrinacion de las Abejas de Acteal para exigir justicia verdadera y digna 14 de agosto de 2019.

Chiapas: Sociedad Civil Las Abejas de Acteal rechaza solución amistosa en el caso de la masacre de Acteal presentado ante la CIDH 7 de marzo de 2019.

Chiapas: Death Threats against FRAYBA and Relatives of Prisoners

December 11, 2019


On December 9th, the Fray Bartolome de Las Casas Center for Human Rights (Frayba) denounced at a press conference death threats against its staff and those who make up the Collective of Relatives of Prisoners in Struggle “who received in November and so far in December death threats, surveillance, harassment and intimidation, in the context of the struggle for the freedom of native prisoners, particularly Juan de la Cruz Ruiz.”

It explained that the threats began to appear from November 12th, 2019, when “approximately at 10 pm, a black car with tinted windows left an envelope inside the home of a defender of the Family of Prisoners in Struggle. The envelope contained a message with newspaper clippings that said: Faro: catastrophic warning, call for help (the defender’s name is omitted) is in danger of death, life is very short, death is inevitable, one more, November, take care of her, try to save her life. It is worth mentioning that Faro is the last name of the Director of Frayba.”

Another incident occurred on November 19th when a new message was discovered at the domicile of the same defender where they wrote the name apparently in blood. That same night, at 9:00 p.m., an advertisement related to a funeral home was found in the house of a member of FRAYBA. “It is possible to say that in none of the neighboring houses they left this announcement”, it emphasized.

FRAYBA also reported that “as a result of these threats we have documented greater vigilance and harassment of both the families of the prisoners and the organizations and groups that accompany them.” It denounced that “to date, an adequate protection response has not been obtained from the mechanisms of the Mexican State” although “the defender filed a complaint with the Attorney General of the State of Chiapas for the threats and FRAYBA has made several written interventions before state and federal authorities.” It said that “the guarantee and protection is not made effective by the Mexican State, minimizing the risk situation that due to the circumstances we value coming from agents of the State itself.”

“After one year after Rutilio Escandon’s government, neglect, indifference and no response to the human rights situation persist; resulting in the obstruction towards the demand for justice and discrimination for indigenous peoples,” it claimed.

It urged the authorities to cease the death threats, vigilance, intimidation and harassment towards those who make up the Collective of Families of Prisoners in Struggle and Frayba, as well as their solidarity networks; to guarantee the life, security and personal integrity of the defenders mentioned, as well as the prisoners organized in La Voz de Indigenas en Resistencia, La Verdadera Voz del Amate and Viniketik in Resistencia; and that immediate measures are implemented to obtain the freedom of Juan de la Cruz Ruiz, Adrian Gómez Jimenez, Abraham Lopez Montejo, Germán Lopez Montejo and Marcelino Ruiz Gomez “who are arbitrarily deprived of their freedom and whose human rights have been violated by the Mexican State.”

For more information in Spanish:

Amenazas de muerte a defensora y al Frayba (CDH Fray Bartolomé de Las Casas, 9 de diciembre de 2019)

Denuncian amenazas de muerte contra activistas y defensores del Frayba y familiares de presos (Proceso, 9 de diciembre de 2019)

Frayba pide a CIDH medidas cautelares para indígenas amenazados (La Jornada, 9 de diciembre de 2019)

For more information from SIPAZ:

Chiapas/International: Solidarios de la Voz del Amate Seeks Alliances with Other Processes in Latin America (December 6, 2019)

Chiapas: Freedom for Juan de la Cruz Ruiz (December 5, 2019)

Chiapas:Presos del Cerss 5 son amenazados de ser reubicados si no detienen su protesta (6 de septiembre de 2019)

Chiapas: After over 100 Days on Hunger Strike, Prisoners Need Appropriate Medical Attention and Continue to Demand Freedom (June 27, 2019)

Chiapas: Indigenous Prisoner Released after 16 Years Awaiting Sentencing and 60 Days Hunger Strike (May 26, 2019)

Chiapas: Diego Lopez Mendez Freed, Prisoner and Member of Solidarios de la Voz del Amate