Chiapas: Destruction of Camps and Threats to Tsotsil Population in Forced Displacement

January 4, 2019

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On December 23, 2018, the Fray Bartolomé de Las Casas Human Rights Center published this Urgent Action:

New forced displacements in Chalchihuitán, Chiapas

Destruction of camps and threats to Tsotsil population as forced displacement increases conditions of vulnerability and risks for 1,146 people.

Nine camps which housed internally displaced people in Chalchihuitán, Chiapas, were destroyed on December 21, 2018, between 14:00 and 17:00 hours, approximately, in a context of aggression on the part of Hermelindo García Núñez, Municipal Union of Chalchiuitán, member of the National Action Party.

238 displaced families in the Barrio Shishimtotik, Tulantik, Ch’enmut, Bololchojon, Cruz K’ak’anam, Jolcantetik, Cruzton, Bejelton, and Barrio Pom camps lost the few belongings they had in the houses made of plastic, wood, and some with sheets. They also demolished toilets built with donations from solidarity organizations such as Caritas.

The population, mostly women and children, moved again after the aggression and intimidation. Families have lent them spaces, but there have been threats to expel anyone from their community if they help displaced people in this way. Testimonies say that community authorities prohibited humanitarian access, and threatened to tie up and burn representatives of the Chalchihuite Committee, as well as anyone who tries to enter the demolished camps.

At least 1,237 people remain in forced displacement in Chalchihuitán, Chiapas, in conditions of vulnerability and risk, without being able to return to their homes because their land is on the edge of the conflict where armed groups from Chenalhó continue to fire weapons which intensify in the early hours of the morning.

More than a year after the massive forced displacement of communities of Tsotsil people of Chalchihuitán, Chiapas, the situation remains serious and human rights violations continue due to the failure of the Mexican State. The government of Chiapas fails to comply with international commitments to care for and protect displaced people and violates precautionary measure No. 882-17 granted by the Inter-American Commission on Human Rights on February 24, 2018, “to guarantee the rights of members of indigenous peoples in a situation of risk to the life, safety, and personal integrity of the 10 displaced communities since November 2017.

For this reason, we demand that the Mexican State:

Guarantee the safety, integrity, and life of the population in forced displacement in Chalchihuitán, Chiapas.

Stop the threats and aggression coming from Hermelindo García Núñez, Municipal Union of Chalchiuitán, against representatives of the Chalchihuite Committee.

In accordance with the Guiding Principles on Forced Displacement of the United Nations, deal comprehensively with the forced displacement in Chalchihuitán, Chiapas.

We ask national and international solidarity to send your appeals to:

C. Andrés Manuel López Obrador. Presidente Constitucional de México     Residencia Oficial de los Pinos. Casa Miguel Alemán. Col. San Miguel Chapultepec, C.P. 11850 Ciudad de México. Fax: (+52) 55 5093 4901:Twitter@lopezobrador_

Lic.Olga Sánchez Cordero. Secretaria de Gobernación de México                              Bucareli 99, 1er. piso. Col. Juárez. Delegación Cuauhtémoc;  C.P. 06600 Ciudad de México. Fax: (+52) 55 5093 34 14; Correo:secretario@segob.gob.mx: Twitter@M_OlgaSCordero

Lic. Luis Raúl González Pérez. Presidente de la Comisión Nacional de Derechos Humanos, Edificio “Héctor Fix Zamudio”, Blvd. Adolfo López Mateos 1922, 6°piso. Col. Tlacopac San Ángel. Delegación Álvaro Obregón. C.P. 01040; Ciudad de México.              Fax: (+52) 0155 36 68 07 67: Correo: correo@cndh.org.mx : Twitter: @CNDH

Lic. Rutilio Escandón Cadenas. Gobernador Constitucional del Estado de Chiapas Palacio de Gobierno del Estado de Chiapas, 1er Piso Av. Central y Primera Oriente, Colonia Centro, C.P. 29009. Tuxtla Gutiérrez, Chiapas, México                                                Fax: +52 961 61 88088 – + 52 961 6188056; Extensión 21120. 21122;                              Correo: secparticular@chiapas.gob.mx: Twitter: @JuntoscnRutilio

Lic. Ismael Brito Mazariegos. Secretario General de Gobierno en Chiapas: Palacio De Gobierno, 2o. Piso, Centro C.P. 29000 Tuxtla Gutiérrez, Chiapas. Conmutador: (961) 61 8 74 60 Ext. 20003: Correo: secretariaparticular.sgg@gmail.com

Lic. Alonso Méndez Guzmán. Subsecretario de Gobierno de la Región V. Altos Tsotsil-Tseltal: Francisco I. Madero No. 101, Barrio Guadalupe C.P. 29200 San Cristóbal de las Casas, Chiapas. Teléfono: 01 (967) 67 465 94 Fax: 01 (967) 67 465 94

C. Margarita Díaz García. Presidente Municipal de Chalchihuitán                                Avenida Central S/N, Palacio Municipal C.P. 29850 Chalchihuitán, Chiapas.              Teléfono: (01 919) 10 1-10-28 o Teléfono: 9671245086

 

For more information in Spanish:

Denuncia el Frayba la destrucción de 9 campamentos de desplazados (La Jornada, 24 de diciembre de 2018)

Destruyen nueve campamentos de mujeres e infantes en Chalchihuitán(Regeneración, 24 de diciembre de 2018)

Destruyen campamentos de 238 familias tsotsiles desplazadas en Chiapas(Contralínea, 24 de diciembre de 2018)

Navidad en Chiapas: destruyen 9 campamentos con 1146 indígenas, la mayoría mujeres, niñas y niños (Sin Embargo, 25 de diciembre de 2018)

For more information from SIPAZ:

Chiapas: displaced families from Banavil return to their home to celebrate the Day of the Dead (November 3, 2018).

Chiapas: State Congress asks the government to address the issue of forced displacement; displaced people from Colonia Puebla return to San Cristóbal de Las Casas (October 30, 2018).

National: 20,390 Forcibly Displaced in 2017 – Over 329,900 in the Last 12 Years (May 11, 2018).

 

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International/National: Mexico’s 2018 Universal Periodic Review (UPR)

November 14, 2018

UNUnited Nations, Geneva, Switzerland (@Animal Político)

On November 7th, as part of the Universal Periodic Review (UPR) of the United Nations Human Rights Council, representatives from 108 countries made questions and recommendations on the subject to Mexico at the UN headquarters in Geneva, Switzerland. The last review had been carried out in 2013.

The Mexican government delegation acknowledged that “considerable challenges” persist in the protection of human rights defenders and journalists, torture, forced disappearance, femicidal and anti-migrant violence, as well as impunity in the criminal justice system.

Undersecretary for Multilateral Affairs, Miguel Ruiz Cabañas, leader of the Mexican delegation for this UPR, said that “Mexico remains a country open to international scrutiny, and assured that the State will continue to work with civil society to address the recommendations made in this Review.” The Human Rights Council of the UN, based on this, will make recommendations for the Mexican State, which must answer those it will accept and those it will not for March 2019. It should be noted that by then the government of Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador (AMLO) will be in office.

At the end of the session ColectivoEPUmx said that the participation of the States confirmed that the human rights crisis in Mexico persists. It summarized what was stated as follows: “the main issue of concern was the aggressions against and murders of human rights defenders and journalists and the lack of investigation and punishment of the perpetrators. Multiple observations were also made about the structural and institutional violence against women. The need to attack the high levels of violence, corruption and impunity was reiterated, considering that they are accurate and verifiable indicators in the fulfillment of responsibilities regarding the human rights of a State. In this logic, the need for a #FiscaliaQueSirva was reiterated and many concerns of the #SeguridadSinGuerra collective were repeated, such as the revision of the Internal Security Law.”

In view of the above, ColectivoEPU.mx called on the elected federal government to hold a public meeting once these recommendations have been issued and to strengthen the international cooperation for its implementation as well as “generating mechanisms that allow the implementation of the results of this exercise of the UPR and mechanisms to eradicate impunity.”

For more information in Spanish:

COMUNICADO | Consejo de Derechos Humanos de la ONU confirma crisis de DDHH en México (#ColectivoEPUmx, 7 de noviembre de 2018)

En EPU solicitan a México respuestas eficaces para proteger a periodistas y activistas (Aristegui Noticias, 7 de noviembre de 2018)

Persiste violencia estructural contra mujeres e impunidad: EPUmx (La Jornada, 7 de noviembre de 2018)

EPU 2018: México reconoce ante el mundo su deuda en Derechos Humanos; naciones señalan retos y deficiencias (Animal Político, 7 de noviembre de 2018)

EPU2018: Llegó el momento, gobierno de EPN se somete a su examen final sobre Derechos Humanos (Animal Político, 6 de noviembre de 2018)

For more information from SIPAZ:

National: 245 NGO publicly present the “Joint Report for the Third Universal Periodic Review of Mexico”  (September 20th, 2018)

2018: México será examinado por el Consejo de Derechos Humanos de la ONU en el tercer ciclo del Examen Periódico Universal (EPU) (4 de abril de 2018)

National: 176 recommendations for Mexico during the second cycle of the Universal Periodic Review (UPR)  (November 13th, 2013)

Nacional: informe de OSC sobre DH rumbo al segundo Examen Periódico Universal (EPU) en octubre (12 de julio de 2013)


Oaxaca: SCJN is called to protect the collective rights of the Zapotec community and to cancel the permits of the Southern Wind-Energy Corporation

November 2, 2018
cuartooscuro

Juchitán (@Cuartooscuro)


In a statement published on October 25, organizations that defend human rights and the environment called on the Supreme Court of Justice of the Nation (SCJN) to
“strictly adhere to the highest standards of prior consultation in its sentence, to protect the Collective rights of the Zapotec community, and to order the cancellation of the permits granted to the Southern Wind-Energy Corporation (Eólica del Sur) for the construction of a wind turbine park in Juchitán, Oaxaca, as well as to impose fair reparation measures for the community. ” Next October 31, the highest judicial body will decide whether the human rights of the Zapotec community in the case were violated or not.

It is worth remembering that last May the SCJN attracted the actions for legal protections (amparos) filed by more than a thousand members of the Zapotec community of Juchitán regarding the consultation that was carried out to implement the project of the subsidiary of the transnational Mitsubishi, which, despite the pending litigation, has continued to advance in the construction of the megaproject.

The organizations expressed great concern about the draft resolution that the SCJN intends to present because they fear that a “decision that supports bad practices in indigenous consultations” could be enlisted.

At the press conference in which the statement was presented, Betina Cruz, representative of the Assembly of Indigenous Peoples of the Isthmus of Tehuantepec in Defense of Land and Territory, recalled that since 2014 they oppose this wind farm, “the largest of its kind in Latin America”, since the consultation of the affected communities was given once the company had already obtained the government permits. She noted that currently the Isthmus of Tehuantepec has 1,915 wind turbines, in 24 parks, none installed with prior, free and informed consultations, as established by the Inter-American Court of Human Rights and the UN Special Rapporteur on the rights of Indigenous Peoples.

For their part, members of the Zapotec community have denounced “that they have been criminalized and threatened before, during and after the consultation because of their opposition to the project, so it was never a free process or one done in good faith. Nor was complete information provided on the impacts of the project and its alternatives for the communities. Even the responsible authorities, like the Sener, sought to accelerate the process to endorse the project, in violation of the uses and customs of the community, and leaving pending issues for discussion ».

The organizations encouraged the SCJN “not to discard this unique opportunity to generate a historical precedent in favor of the effective protection of the indigenous peoples rights within the framework of the Energy Reform and to establish clear rules for the government on how to comply with its obligation to consult peoples and communities. Failure to correct its course, would be deepening the serious situation of discrimination experienced by indigenous communities in Mexico and would allow the reform to be implemented in clear violation of human rights.

For more information (In Spanish):

Opositores a Eólica del Sur, en Oaxaca, alertan por posible decisión de la Corte contra derecho de consulta indígena (Proceso, 25 de octubre de 2018)

Solicitan activistas a SCJN cancelar permisos a Eólica del Sur (La Jornada, 25 de octubre de 2018)

Piden a la SCJN cancelar permisos a Eólica del Sur (El Imparcial, 25 de octubre de 2018)

Piden a la Suprema Corte cancelar permisos a Eólica del Sur por violar derechos humanos de comunidades indígenas (OSC, 25 de octubre de 2018)

For more information from SIPAZ:

Oaxaca: Residents of Juchitan win motion to suspend construction of wind-energy park (October 25, 2015)

Oaxaca: Indigenous Zapotecos mobilize themselves over grave violations to right to consultation (September 11, 2015)

Oaxaca: Beginning of consultation regarding wind-energy park in Juchitán (12 November 2014)

Oaxaca: Various denunciations in the Tehuantepec Isthmus from community assemblies organized against wind-farms in their territories (6 September 2014)


National / International: Caravan of mothers of disappeared migrants arrives in Mexico

November 1, 2018
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Ruben Figueroa, Mesoamerican Migrants Movement


On October 23, in the midst of the exodus of thousands of Hondurans who entered Mexico to reach the United States, the XIV caravan of Central American mothers who seek their missing children in this same attempt also arrived in Mexico.

The Mesoamerican Migrant Movement, which has been supporting this process, estimates that more than 70,000 people from Central America, including Hondurans, Guatemalans and Salvadorans, disappeared in Mexican territory. The violence and human rights violations to which they may be exposed have been widely documented by various human rights organizations, including the United Nations (UN), which have documented the risks of migrants in Mexico and the crimes they may face.

The women who participate in the caravan this year integrate several search groups in El Salvador, Guatemala and Honduras. They will be in Mexico from October 23 to November 7, “carrying out actions of research, communal living and protest in 12 states of the Mexican territory covering almost 4,000 kilometers in length and with the confidence of impacting the Mexican society to which they ask for solidarity with their cause”, the statement announcing the activity informed.

The same statement emphasized that “in this edition, one of the purposes of the caravan is to arrive at Mexico City in time to participate in the World Summit of Mothers of Missing Migrants, which will take place in parallel and as a part of the World Social Forum on Migration. on November 2, 3, and 4 of this year, where for the first time there will be a historic meeting between mothers from Maghreb countries: Mauritania, Senegal, Algeria, Tunisia, in addition to Italy, areas of the Asian Pacific, the United States, Nicaragua, Honduras, El Salvador, Guatemala and also Mexican mothers. “

The objective of this summit is “to link emerging organizations of family members, mothers in particular, who share the struggle to find their loved ones and reunite their families broken by the phenomenon of forced displacement, to share experiences of search and healing, to feed the hope and to recognize that the problem of the disappearances of people in movement is global, diverse and extremely complex “; as well asto send a strong message of repudiation to the world powers, governments and institutions, to tell them that their migration management models, instead of solving what they erroneously assume as a problem, criminally aggravate the situation they cause in this era of capitalist accumulation by dispossession and violence, and that they will not succeed, no matter how many dead they produce, to “order” and control the migratory flows ».

For more information (In Spanish)

Inicia Caravana de migrantes desaparecidos 2018 – vídeo (La Jornada, 23 de octubre de 2018)

Llegará a México caminata de madres de migrantes desaparecidos (La Jornada, 23 de octubre de 2018)

Madres centroamericanas llegan a México este martes en busca de sus hijos desaparecidos (Animal Político, 23 de octubre de 2018)

Madres centroamericanas avanzan hacia México buscando a sus parientes migrantes desaparecidos (CNN México, 20 de octubre de 2018)

COMUNICADO: XIV Caravana de Madres de Migrantes Desaparecidos 2018 (Movimiento Migrante Mesoamericano, 5 de octubre de 2018)

For more information from SIPAZ (in English) :

National/International: “Caravan of Mothers of Missing Migrants” Arrives to Mexico December 27, 2017

Mexico: Mothers of Disappeared Migrants “Looking for Life on Roads of Death” November 28, 2016

Chiapas: Caravan for Peace, Life and Justice Reaches San Cristobal de Las Casas April 10, 2016


Guerrero: Mixed Unit Disarms 500 Municipal Police and Arrests Two Officers in Acapulco; Public Security Controlled by SEDENA, SEMAR and State Police

October 2, 2018

Acapulco(@Somoselmedio)

On September 25th, some 100 Navy elements backed by some 250 soldiers, state and ministerial police took over the Secretariat of Public Security (SSP in its Spanish acronym) of Acapulco, disarmed more than 500 municipal police officers and detained two officers of the body accused of homicide, who were sent to the Iguala prison.

The operation was organized on suspicion of probable “infiltration of criminal groups” in the body and against the null performance of the municipal police against an increase in the crime rate, said the spokesman of the Guerrero Coordination Group (GCG), Roberto Alvarez Heredia at a press conference. He announced that security and the protection of citizens of the municipality of Acapulco will be under control of the State Secretariat of Public Security with the support of the Secretariat of National Defense (SEDENA in its Spanish acronym), the Secretariat of the Navy (SEMAR in its Spanish acronym) and the Federal Police.

“The State Attorney General’s Office executed two arrest warrants against Luis Fernando alias El Fenix and Brayan Antonio alias El Brayan for their probable responsibility in the crime of aggravated homicide, who, up to this point, serve as operational commands of the Secretariat of Public Security of Acapulco City Council. The rest of the members of this body are subject to investigation” and they will be subject to trust control tests, he explained.

“The actions carried out yesterday did not register any incident and were carried out in strict adherence to the law and the corresponding protocol and the elements are at this moment under review along with their weapons,” the spokesperson said.

This operation took place after the mayor elected by MORENA, Adela Roman Ocampo, who will take office in a few days, publicly denounced that organized crime controlled the body, and even threatened to kill her collaborators, arguing that if changes were made to the police, “they were going to receive them with bullets,” local newspapers reported.

For more information in Spanish:

Toma la Marina la SSP de Acapulco, desarma a 500 policías y detiene a dos mandos (El Sur, 26 de septiembre de 2018)

Detienen a dos mandos de la policía en Acapulco; toma el gobierno estatal la seguridad (El Sur, 25 de septiembre de 2018)

Afirman que dos carteles infiltraron policía municipal de Acapulco (El Universal, 25 de septiembre de 2018)

La Marina asume el control de seguridad en Acapulco; detienen a 18 policías (Proceso, 25 de septiembre de 2018)

Sedena, Semar y Policía estatal asumen seguridad en Acapulco (La Jornada, 25 de septiembre de 2018)

Relevan a municipales en Acapulco; agentes estatales, al mando (Excelsior, 26 de septiembre de 2018)

Toma Gobierno del Estado de Guerrero control de la Policía Municipal de Acapulco (Aristegui Noticias, 25 de septiembre de 2018)

Si hay cambios en Policía, “los recibiremos a balazos”, advierte el crimen a alcaldesa electa de Acapulco (Proceso, 24 de septiembre de 2018)

For more information from SIPAZ:

Guerrero : allanan las oficinas de la agencia de noticias Quadratín en Acapulco (25 de abril de 2018)

Guerrero : Asesinan y estigmatizan a la periodista y bloguera Leslie Ann Pamela Montenegro del Real en Acapulco (13 de febrero de 2018)


Chiapas: Federal Superior Auditors (ASF) Finds 187 Million Peso Irregularities in Chiapas Health System

October 1, 2018

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Based on an article published on September 25th, the magazine Sin Embargo reported that in 2017, the Federal Superior Auditors (ASF in its Spanish acronym) found “a series of irregularities in the Chiapas health for the sum of 187,348,662 pesos, [federal] money that was transferred to “other” accounts; was used for other purposes (paying salaries not covered by the budget to staff) or simply that there are no vouchers or receipts to show that the money fulfilled its objective.”

Sin Embargo stressed that in Chiapas, the state with the largest number of poor people in the country according to data from the National Council for Evaluation of Social Development Policy (CONEVAL in its Spanish acronym), “802,600 people registered in 2016 as lacking access to health services.”

The note adds that in the audit of the federal resources transferred to the Government of Chiapas for an amount of 2,447,239,000 pesos, they could not “clarify or justify 42,242,869 pesos. This amount must be verified before December 31st, 2018 and subsequently, returned to the Federal Treasury (TESOFE in its Spanish acronym).”

For more information in Spanish:

Una maraña de cuentas, pagos sin recibo y premios a “un sindicato” esfuman 187 millones en Chiapas (Sin Embargo, 25 de septiembre de 2018)

Pagos sin recibo y premios al “sindicato”, hacen desaparecer 187 millones para el Sector Salud de Chiapas (Chiapas Paralelo, 25 de septiembre de 2018)

Desaparecen por arte de magia 187 mdp en Chiapas; estaban destinados a salud (Laneta Noticias, 25 de septiembre de 2018)

For more information from SIPAZ:

Chiapas: Manuel Velasco Coello Presents Fifth Government Activities Report (April 12th, 2018)

Chiapas: repression and arbitrary imprisonment of health-care workers (Feb. 2nd, 2018)


Chiapas: Julión Alvarez Threatens to Sue Media and Frayba; Chiapas Paralelo Denounces “Erosion of Freedom of Expression”

October 1, 2018

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On September 20th, it was announced that the singer Julio Cesar Alvarez Montelongo, better known as Julion Alvarez, threatened to sue the news website ‘Chiapas Paralelo’ and the Fray Bartolome de Las Casas Center for Human Rights (Frayba), for denouncing alleged bribery the artist to arrest and sentence Sergio Alberto Gonzalez Castro to six years in prison. The legal representative of the artist reported that, “We have been instructed by Mr. Julio Cesar Alvarez Montelongo to exercise any legal action against those who have made the accusations that are attributed to him (…) We consider that what is disclosed in the aforementioned news items constitutes damage to the honor, reputation and private life of our client. ‘We will not tolerate injury or insult’; whoever causes damage will have to make reparations and whoever is responsible will have to assume the consequences of their actions.”

Sergio Alberto Gonzalez Castro was accused of stealing cattle at the artist’s ranch in the municipality of La Concordia. According to the relatives of Gonzalez Castro, “there was never any cattle theft, the influence of Julion Alvares (sic) with Governor Manuel Velasco meant that for cattle they detained several people, in total they are like 18 people accused of cattle theft.” The report issued by Chiapas Paralelo website states that Sergio Alberto Gonzalez Castro was arrested in 2015 and, according to Frayba, he was subjected to physical and psychological torture for three days by public officials, to plead guilty to the crimes of those who accused him.

In light of what happened, on September 21st, the editorial team of Chiapas Paralelo considered the letter issued by the legal department of Julio Cesar Alvarez Montelongo “slanderous”, “to make use of qualifiers such as “irresponsible remarks”,”injury” and “insult.” It stated that “it is implicit in an attempt to intimidate journalists and human rights organizations”, which “entails an erosion of the right to freedom of expression.”

Due to this, Chiapas Paralelo called on national and international organizations that defend freedom of expression and the rights of journalists and human rights defenders “so that, within the scope of their competencies, they may initiate an investigation into these events. We believe that in a scenario such as Mexico, where in recent years 118 journalists have been killed in possible connection to their journalistic work, the statements made by the legal representative of the singer Julion Alvarez place us in a situation of even greater risk coming from a person who has been singled out by governments of other nations, to have links with groups that are outside the law. We ask the governor of the state of Chiapas, Manuel Velasco Coello, to be guarantor of respect for freedom of expression in the state, and that no personal connection that he has should be a cause to take on actions outside the law.”

For more information in Spanish:

Julión Álvarez amenaza al Frayba y al portal de noticias Chiapas Paralelo (Proceso, 21 de septiembre de 2018)

Denunciamos intento del cantante Julión Álvarez, por amedrentar a periodistas y organizaciones defensoras de derechos humanos, causando un menoscabo a la libertad de expresión (Comunicado de prensa, Chiapas Paralelo, 21 de septiembre de 2018)

Periodistas de Chiapas Paralelo acusan a Julión Álvarez de amenazarlos (Sin embargo, 21 de septiembre de 2018)

Amenaza Julión Álvarez con demandar a medios y un centro de Derechos Humanos (SDP Noticias, 21 de septiembre de 2018)

Libertad para Sergio Alberto González Castro #ContraLaTortura (Frayba, 13 de septiembre de 2018)

For more information from SIPAZ:

Chiapas: Heraldo de Chiapas Journalist Murdered in Yajalon (Sept. 27th, 2018)