National/International: “When Words Are Not Enough” – Amnesty International Report almost One Year after AMLO Takes Office

December 4, 2019


On November 27th, almost one year after the inauguration of Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador (AMLO) as the new president of Mexico, Amnesty International (AI) presented a report entitled “When Words Are Not Enough” in which it takes stock of progress made on the human rights crisis in the country.

“The government of President Lopez Obrador has shown a willingness to move forward partially on some initiatives, especially on the issue of disappearances in the country. However, after a year of his government, there are no substantial changes in the lives of millions of people facing a very serious human rights crisis that has lasted for more than a decade. The very high levels of violence that undermine the right to life, the torture that is still widespread, the alarming rates of violence against women, and a militarized security strategy more alive than ever, are a sign of the tragic reality in Mexico,” Erika Guevara Rosas, director for the Americas of Amnesty International, said.

Refarding advances, she considered that the decision of the government in August to recognize the competence of the Committee against Enforced Disappearances of the UN to review communications on individual cases, gave a solution to one of the repeated demands of relatives of missing persons and human rights organizations. “However, this measure has not yet been implemented.”

AI said it sees “a huge incongruity between what the government says and what it then does. It promises a more humane treatment for migrants and in need of international protection, but sends the National Guard to persecute and detain them. It says he will protect human rights defenders and journalists, but publicly discredits them. It is worrisome that human rights violations remain the rule in Mexico and not the exception,” Erika Guevara Rosas added.

Amnesty International concluded that “in order to achieve a substantial change in human rights, the government must stop blaming previous administrations for the situation and, instead, accept responsibility for what is happening in the present and seek solutions to address the serious debts pending in the matter, making sure that any policy of the current administration has human rights and its international obligations as a fundamental basis.”

For more information in Spanish:

Cuando las palabras no bastan (Amnistía Internacional, 27 de noviembre de 2019)

México: Amnistía Internacional alerta sobre la falta de avances en derechos humanos después de un año del nuevo gobierno (Amnistía Internacional, 27 de noviembre de 2019)

“Las palabras no bastan”, la evaluación de AI al gobierno de AMLO en materia de derechos humanos (Proceso, 27 de noviembre de 2019)

México mantiene crisis de derechos humanos en gobierno de AMLO según Amnistía Internacional (El Sol de México, 27 de noviembre de 2019)

Amnistía Internacional califica de “incongruente” la política de derechos humanos de López Obrador (El País, 28 de noviembre de 2019)

For more information from SIPAZ:

International/National: Un Human Rights Committee Issues 48 Human Rights Recommendations for Mexico (November 12, 2019)

National/International: Attacks on Migrant Defenders in Central America, Mexico and U.S. Increase (October 1, 2019)

International/National: UN High Commissioner for Human Rights Expresses Concern over Unresolved Issues in Mexico (September 22, 2019)


Chiapas/National: March and Press Conference for International Day to Eradicate Violence against Women

December 4, 2019

Women 1

On November 25th, within the framework of International Day to Eradicate Violence against Women, several civil and collective organizations, including the Chiapas Center for Women’s Rights (CDMCH in its Spanish acronym) and the Movement in Defense of Land and Territory (MODEVITE in its Spanish acronym), held a march in San Cristobal de Las Casas. On their way from the Municipal Administrative Unit to the Plaza de la Paz they made a stop in front of the Women’s Hospital to report cases of obstetric violence and cases in which women with little knowledge of Spanish were pressured into being sterilized by doctors. They gave the floor to several women, including women from Tseltal and Tsotsil peoples, who shared their experiences on how they were treated in hospitals.

In addition there was a pronouncement from MODEVITE at the subsequent rally in which they pointed out that according to data from several feminist organizations and groups there were 166 violent deaths of women, of which only 76 were classified as femicide up to October 31st.

They demanded that “the corresponding investigations of femicides be carried out and all cases be judged with a gender perspective, to grant justice and non-repetition. The developmental programs that reproduce machismo in our communities and increase the violence experienced by women be eliminated. That the militarization of our communities and ejidos be stopped, the criminalization against human rights defenders cease,” they finally declared.

women 2

At the same time there was a press conference called by Mujeres Libres COLEM, an organization that has worked on the issue of femicide violence for more than 30 years and together with the National Citizen Observatory of Femicide (OCNF in its Spanish acronym) among other organizations has achieved a Gender Violence Alert Declaration in Chiapas in 2016. It was noted that since that statement there have been 355 cases of violence in the state of Chiapas, of which 139 are obvious femicides. “This year the account goes over 140 cases: Femicides 53; Possible femicides 9; equated femicide 2; accident 12; homicide 8; suicide 6; other violent deaths 2; plus 48 cases that qualify as an attempt,” said Martha Figueroa Mier, a member of COLEM.

She also said that “[…] and from the current governor Rutilio Escandon Cadenas, he has counted 144 records from which 53 have been femicides, which contradicts his unfortunate statements that there are no femicides in Chiapas”, referring to a video from Suceso Chiapas del Gobernador published in February.

I also affirm that many of the authorities still do not consider many of these deaths as femicides although Mariana Lima Buendia’s family, violently killed by her husband, fought up to the Supreme Court of Justice of the Nation (SCJN in its Spanish acronym) so that the criterion of that “Every violent death of women be investigated at the beginning as femicide.”

According to data collected by the National Bank of Data and Information on Cases of Violence against Women (BANAVIM in its Spanish acronym), more than 406,000 aggressors of girls, adolescents and adult women in Mexico have been identified in the last 12 years, figures that indicate that aggressions are not isolated cases but are a structural problem.

“Violence is a continuum, women suffer both in the public and private spheres and in all areas of their lives. The origins of this violence are discrimination and gender inequality,” warned Natalia Calero, a program management specialist at UN Women in Mexico.

BANAVIM also observed that 372,687 of the 406,000 attacks, that is to say 91% percent, were committed in the family environment. It should be noted that it is not only about physical violence but also psychological, economic, sexual and patrimonial violence.

For more information in Spanish:

Exigen más acciones para erradicar la violencia contra las mujeres (NVT Noticias el 26 de noviembre de 2019)

“No hay feminicidios en Chiapas”: Rutilio Escandón (Voces Feministas el 20 de febrero de 2019)

For more information from SIPAZ:

National: Demand for Resignation of Head of National Commission to Prevent and Eradicate Violence against Women (CONAVIM) (October 16, 2019)

National/International: Spotlight Initiative against Gender Violence Launched in Mexico (June 6, 2019)

National: Over 424,000 on Mexican #Me Too (May 7, 2019)

National: Presentation of ‘Emergent Plan to Guarantee the Integrity, Security and Life of Women and Girls in Mexico” (March 14, 2019)

Nacional : OSC denuncian omisiones en investigación y combate a feminicidios (August 16, 2018)

National/International: “Final Observations on the Ninth Periodic Report from Mexico, the Convention for the Elimination of all Forms of Discrimination against Women” Published (August 6, 2018)

National/International: Caravan of Mothers of Disappeared Migrants 2019 Tours Country

November 24, 2019


On November 15th, the Caravan of Mothers of Disappeared Central American Migrants in Mexico 2019 entered the country to travel the migratory route in search of their relatives. Together and until next December 3rd, it is expected to travel about 4,000 kilometers and 13 states that are on the way to the United States. The caravan is made up of mothers from Nicaragua, Honduras, Guatemala and El Salvador.

The Mesoamerican Migrant Movement (MMM) said that “the 2019 slogan, Fifteen Years of Resistance, forces us to think historically about the caravan and place the mothers’ struggle in a broader context. Not only do they embark on their pilgrimage during a migration crisis in Mexico, where Chiapas figures prominently as a place where migrants are detained, deported and trapped in limbo, but the forces that impel migrants to leave their homes are deeply rooted in a history of the Americas of disappearances and state violence. The caravan is a consequence of an immigration crisis never resolved in the hemisphere.”

In addition to highlighting the problems faced by migrants, the caravan also seeks “the emerging organizations of relatives, mothers in particular, who share the struggle to find their loved ones and reunite their families broken by the phenomenon of forced displacement, share search and healing experiences, feed hope and recognize that the problem of disappearances of people on the move is global and extremely complex.”

It should be mentioned that in the 14 caravans carried out to date, 310 migrants have been located, while “the government has not located any.” The MMM said that “it is no consolation in statistical terms, but something is being done and we have relative success.” Indeed, it is estimated that 70,000 to 120,000 missing migrants are to be found in Mexico: “Many are in mass graves, others in clandestine graves, others in morgues and others are hiding somewhere in Mexico making their lives more or less normal, working, but they have not been able to have communication with their relatives again.”

For more information in Spanish:

Madres de migrantes desaparecidos parten de Chiapas a Veracruz (La Jornada, 19 de noviembre de 2019)

Llega a México caravana de madres centroamericanas que buscan a sus hijos desaparecidos (CNN México, vídeo, 19 de noviembre de 2019)

Caravana de madres de migrantes reúne a hermanas hondureñas en Chiapas (La Jornada, 19 de noviembre de 2019)

Sin pistas aún, caravana de madres de migrantes cumple 4 días en México (La Jornada, 18 de noviembre de 2019)

Caravana de madres de migrantes buscará a desaparecidos en México (La Jornada, 15 de noviembre de 2019)

Comunicado y ruta de la Caravana de Madres de Migrantes Desaparecidos 2019 (Movimiento Migrante Mesoamericano, 12 de noviembre de 2019)

For more information from SIPAZ:

Nacional/Internacional: Forman en México Red Mundial de Madres de Migrantes Desaparecidos (7 de noviembre de 2018)

Nacional/Internacional : llega a México Caravana de madres de migrantes desaparecidos (24 de octubre de 2018)

Nacional/Internacional: Llega a México la “Caravana de Madres de Migrantes Desaparecidos” (7 de diciembre de 2017)

México : Caravana de Madres de Migrantes Desaparecidos “buscando vida en caminos de muerte” (25 de noviembre de 2016)

Guerrero: Body of Activist Arnulfo Cero Found in Hidden Grave More than One Month after his Disappearance in Tlapa de Comonfort

November 24, 2019


On November 20th, Guerrero Governor Hector Astudillo Flores reported that the body of the activist and leader of the La Montaña Popular Front (FPM in its Spanish acronym), Arnulfo Ceron Soriano, was found in a hidden grave in Tlapa de Comonfort. He had been missing since last October 11th. He regretted the murder and announced that they will find the perpetrators of the crime.

The tomb was located after the statements from Jorge Gomez ‘La Chiva’, designated as head of the “Plaza Tlapa”, who was arrested earlier this month in Morelos. He said that according to official reports, for a decade ‘La Chiva’ controlled the municipal police of that town, where “there is a criminal network made up of politicians and criminals who traffic drugs from La Montaña Guerrero to the states of Puebla and Morelos.”

Since the activist’s disappearance was reported, the La Montaña Tlachinollan Human Rights Center, along with other civil and social organizations, held the Trenpa Morenista mayor, Dionisio Merced Pichardo Garcia, and his cabinet chief, Marco Antonio Garcia Morales responsible. According to testimonies, “both politicians are colluded with organized crime.”

“We cannot ignore that the conditions of insecurity that prevail in Tlapa, the collusion of municipal authorities and other institutions with organized crime, as well as the lack of guarantees for human rights defenders and social activists in particular Arnulfo Ceron to carry out their work, led to the disappearance and the cowardly murder of the social defender,” Tlachinollan said in a statement after the discovery. He also denounced that “the constant disqualifications and smear campaigns faced by Arnulfo and other members of the Popular Front of the Mountain by municipal authorities were generating a permissible framework for their subsequent attack.” It urged “to deepen the investigations that will elucidate the motive of this planned crime and implement non-repetition measures.”

Other civil society organizations also reported that there was a lack of diligence and inter-institutional coordination among the authorities that intervened in the search for the defender, which meant that the search work carried out was started a month after the disappearance was reported. They asked the authorities to continue with their “work diligently, promptly and expeditiously,” as well as to consider the defense work carried out by Ceron Soriano in all the lines of investigation that are opened, taking into account the social, political and economic situation of the region, “particularly to inquire about the networks of macro-criminal power that operate in the state and municipality.”

For more information in Spanish:

Falta de coordinación interinstitucional en búsqueda de Arnulfo Cerón, denuncian organizaciones civiles (El Sol de Acapulco, 21 de noviembre de 2019)

Tlachinollan responsabiliza al alcalde de Tlapa ante la ejecución del activista Arnulfo Cerón (Proceso, 20 de noviembre de 2019)

Hallan el cadáver del activista Arnulfo Cerón en una fosa clandestina de Tlapa de Comonfort (Proceso, 20 de noviembre de 2019)

Hallan en fosa cuerpo del activista Arnulfo Cerón Soriano (Aristegui Noticias, 20 de noviembre de 2019)

Tras un mes desaparecido, encuentran el cuerpo del activista Arnulfo Cerón en fosa de Tlapa, Guerrero (Animal Político, 20 de noviembre de 2019)

El cuerpo del activista Arnulfo Cerón es localizado en una fosa clandestina en Tlapa, Guerrero (Sin Embargo, 20 de noviembre de 2019)

For more information from SIPAZ:

Guerrero: A un mes de la desaparición del defensor de derechos humanos Arnulfo Cerón Soriano (13 de noviembre de 2019)

Guerrero: Siguen exigiendo la búsqueda con vida del activista Arnulfo Cerón Soriano a 19 días de su desaparición forzada (29 de octubre de 2019)

Guerrero: Denuncian desaparición de un activista en Tlapa de Comonfort. Asesinan integrante del Concejo Regional de Autoridades Agrarias en Defensa del Territorio en Malinaltepec (14 de octubre de 2019)


Guerrero/National: Buildings where Documents Related to Ayotzinapa Case Deliberately Burned

November 24, 2019

Ayotzi@Cuarto Oscuro

On November 11th, the families of the 43 students of the Normal Rural School of Ayotzinapa disappeared in Iguala, Guerrero, in September 2014 held a private meeting with President Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador and members of the Truth and Access to Justice Commission for the Ayotzinapa Case. The president repeted his commitment to do everything possible to find the whereabouts of the normalistas. Family members insisted that several former officials be consigned, including the former Attorney General of the Republic, Jesus Murillo Karam and Tomas Zeron, who was responsible for the Criminal Investigation Agency of the agency.

“In several lines of research there are elements to be able to consign responsible people. Mainly they are former public officials who participated in the events. We ask that police who participated in the attacks on the students on September 26th and 27th and officials who did the investigations badly be consigned,” said Vidulfo Rosales, lawyer for the La Montaña Tlachinollan Human Rights Center and family representative at the end the meeting. Rosales also reported that searches are being conducted in ten different locations located mainly in Guerrero, such as Tepecoacuilco, Cocula, Iguala and municipalities adjacent to Taxco. On the information that the Army could provide in the clarification of the case, he declared that “they gave a part, but it is incomplete. On the other hand, they have given an important participation in providing security in the search theme.”

Also before the media, the Under-Secretary of Human Rights of the Ministry of the Interior, Alejandro Encinas, said that the case file is in “a process of total reconstruction, it is not starting from scratch, there are many issues that have already been investigated but it suffers from many failures in the way it was put together.” He said that the Attorney General’s Office (FGR in its Spanish acronym) is preparing the elements to summon to declare the officials involved in the construction of the case.

For his part, Felipe de la Cruz, spokesman for the group of relatives of the students, considered that at the meeting the federal government showed willingness to clarify the case; and that is on the path of leading to the truth. However, he said that if there is be no satisfactory results for January 9th when the next work session takes place, the mobilizations will rise in tone.

Strikingly, and just two days later, several unknown subjects set fire to the facilities of the ex-headquarters of the municipal police in Iguala, where documents related to the disappearance of the 43 were kept, including written testimonies on the activity of municipal police during the night of the 26th and early on September 27th, 2014, some of them possibly responsible for having delivered several of the young people who are now missing to alleged hitmen of the Guerreros Unidos criminal group. Everything was reduced to ruins but gasoline bottles were found, which confirmed that the incident was caused.

For more information in Spanish:

Queman documentos relacionados con desaparición de normalistas en Iguala (El Financiero, 13 de noviembre de 2019)

Gobierno de AMLO está en la ruta de llegar a la verdad sobre Ayotzinapa: padres (Revolución 3.0, 12 de noviembre de 2019)

Padres de los 43 le exigen a AMLO dar ya resultados, o retomarán sus protestas con mayor fuerza (Sin Embargo, 12 de noviembre de 2019)

Consignarán a exfuncionarios ligados a indagatorias sobre Ayotzinapa (La Jornada, 11 de noviembre de 2019)

Atrapan a otro implicado en caso Ayotzinapa… y lo sueltan por 10 mil pesos (Aristegui Noticias, 11 de noviembre de 2019)

For more information from SIPAZ:

Nacional: Padres de las 43 normalistas de Ayotzinapa marchan en CDMX, múltiples manifestaciones en el país marcan el quinto aniversario de la desaparición (27 de septiembre de 2019)

Guerrero: FGR reiniciará investigación del caso Ayotzinapa “casi desde cero” (20 de septiembre de 2019)

Guerrero/Nacional : Liberación de 24 inculpados más en caso Ayotzinapa provoca reacción en distintos actores vinculados al mismo (17 de septiembre de 2019)

Guerrero/Nacional: Familiares de los 43 normalistas desaparecidos en Iguala en 2014 se reúnen con AMLO (12 de septiembre de 2019)

Guerrero: Nueva etapa en la investigación del caso Ayotzinapa, crean la Unidad Especial de Investigación y nombran a Omar Gómez Trejo como su titular (1ero de julio de 2019)

Guerrero: One Month Since Disappearance of Human Rights Defender Arnulfo Ceron Soriano

November 15, 2019


November 11th marked one month since the disappearance of the human rights defender, Arnulfo Ceron Soriano in the city of Tlapa de Comonfort. The Tlachinollan Mountain Human Rights Center regretted that the case was not addressed immediately until it escalated internationally. It denounced that “this lack of due diligence in the first hours that followed the complaint, added to the context of macrocriminality, extreme violence, corruption and impunity that characterize the state of Guerrero make this case very complex.” It acknowledged that the arrest on November 6th of Jorge “N” aka “Chiva”, Javier “N” and Cristal “N”, in Morelos, who are allegedly involved in the disappearance “represents a breakthrough in the investigation.” However, it stressed that “the main objective is still to find the live whereabouts of defender Arnulfo Ceron Soriano. These arrests should not mean the end of the investigation and much less of the search work. The authorities must act in a coordinated manner and dedicate all their resources to the search for Arnulfo, with the help of the family and the representatives.” Not until November 12th was the first day of search carried out in coordination with the state and national commission. Tlachinollan urged that this fact “be the beginning of a firm commitment to the case and that it be given a timely follow-up.” It also warned about a situation of serious risk for the family of Ceron Soriano, the members of the Popular Front of the Mountain (FPM in its Spanish acronym, the organization to which the victim belonged) and for Tlachinollan itself by continuing to demand his appearance alive so that it requested “adequate protection measures for each group, as well as the detention of all persons involved in the case.”

For its part, the FPM denounced that one month after the disappearance there has been no effectiveness in the actions of the State to investigate and present him alive, so they protested in the Ministry of the Interior and carried out an informational blockade on the Tlapa-Chilapa highway . They hope that, despite the late action, the state and national Commissions for the Search for Missing Persons will obtain results. The State Attorney General’s Office (FGE in its Spanish acronym) offered a million pesos for those who give information about the whereabouts of Ceron Soriano, who was disappeared on October 11th when he left his home to give a talk at the rehabilitation center in the city of Tlapa.

For more information in Spanish:


El FPM anuncia bloqueo informativo para buscar a Arnulfo Cerón a un mes de su desaparición (Sin Embargo, 11 de noviembre de 2019)

Defensor Arnulfo Cerón suma un mes desaparecido; protestan en Guerrero y Segob por encontrarlo (SDP Noticias, 11 de noviembre de 2019)

Detienen al presunto responsable de la desaparición del líder campesino de Tlapa, Guerrero (Animal Político, 7 de noviembre de 2019)

Detienen a presunto vinculado a desaparición de activista guerrerense (La Jornada, 7 de noviembre de 2019)

“La Chiva”, presunto implicado en la desaparición de Arnulfo Cerón, es detenido en Morelos (sin Embargo, 7 de noviembre de 2019)

For more information from SIPAZ:

Guerrero: Siguen exigiendo la búsqueda con vida del activista Arnulfo Cerón Soriano a 19 días de su desaparición forzada (October 29, 2019)

Guerrero: Disappearance of Activist in Tlapa de Comonfort Reported. Member of Regional Council of Agrarian Authorities in Malinaltepec (October 17, 2019)

International/National : Un Human Rights Committee Issues 48 Human Rights Recommendations for Mexico

November 12, 2019


On November 7th, at the end of Mexico’s sixth periodic review of the implementation of the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights (ICCPR), the Human Rights Committee of the United Nations (UN) issued 48 recommendations.

Among the main ones, the Committee gave the Mexican State a period of two years to “advance in the process of formation of the National Guard as a civil institution.” It expressed concern “for the militarized nature of law enforcement in general, including the National Guard, and for the lack of a clear timetable on the withdrawal of military force in civic security tasks.”

On the other hand, it lamented the lack of progress in the case of the forced disappearance of the 43 students of the Normal Rural School of Ayotzinapa (Iguala, Guerrero, 2014) and urged to “strengthen the research capacity and independence of all the actors involved in the investigation, including prosecutors and experts, as well as ensuring the consolidation of the accusatory system and the autonomy of the institutions of law enforcement.”

A third recommendation, also with a period of two years to assess progress, is the situation of vulnerability of journalists and human rights defenders. The Committee requested that more resources be allocated towards the prevention of aggressions towards these two sectors as well as an exhaustive investigation in case they occur.

Another concern raised is the mistreatment of migrants, including cases of torture and cruel, inhuman and degrading treatment, enforced disappearances, extortion, trafficking, murder and other crimes, in a context of increased migration flows from Central America to the United States and pressures from US government to the Mexican government to stop them. It expressed concern about the widespread use of detention many times by force. It also said it was concerned about the implementation of the Migrant Protection Protocols, which require that asylum seekers in the United States remain in Mexican territory during their processing.

On a positive note, it valued the approval of laws such as the Law to Prevent, Investigate and Punish Torture or the Law on the Forced Disappearance of Persons (both from 2017), although it regretted their slow application. In the case of the General Victims Law, it considered its implementation “insufficient” and therefore urged “the State party to provide the bodies responsible for applying the General Victims Law with the necessary resources, adequate training and effective control mechanisms so that victims of human rights violations promptly receive comprehensive reparation… The State party must also ensure, even through legislative reforms, a fast and efficient procedure to achieve legal recognition of the quality of victims.”

For more information in Spanish:

Comité de Derechos Humanos Observaciones finales sobreelsexto informe periódico de México (CCPR, 7 de noviembre de 2019)

Señala ONU violación de derechos de migrantes en México (La Jornada, 7 de noviembre de 2019)

ONU le da dos años a México para desmilitarizar la Guardia Nacional y resolver caso Ayotzinapa (Animal Político, 7 de noviembre de 2019)

La ONU-DDHH pide desde Ginebra a México desmilitarizar la Guardia Nacional y apurar caso de los 43 (Sin Embargo, 7 de noviembre de 2019)

Desmilitarizar la Guardia Nacional y resolver caso Ayotzinapa pide ONU a México (Radio Formula, 8 de noviembre de 2019)

For more information from SIPAZ:

International/National: UN High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR) Ends Mexican Visit while African Migrants Protest in Tapachula (October 7, 2019)

Internacional/Nacional: Alta Comisionada de la ONU para Derechos Humanos expresa preocupación ante varios pendientes en derechos humanos en México (5 de septiembre de 2019)

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)