Chiapas: 30th Anniversary of “Frayba”

March 24, 2019

Frayba.pngPhoto @ SIPAZ

On March 19th, the Fray Bartolome de Las Casas Center for Human Rights (CDHFBC in its Spanish acronym, better known as Frayba) presented on its 30th anniversary the report “Facing Violence, the Spiral of Struggles and esistance”. The report gives a historical perspective of the journey of Frayba and the panorama of struggle of the peoples in Chiapas in defense of their human rights. It details among other topics the serious situation of violence against women, the process of defending the Zoque territory and the municipality of Chicomuselo, and a systematization on the subject of torture.

“To the women and men who, with their path, have flooded life with dignity, and given meaning of the path of Frayba, that next to/beside you, pulsates the earth, with its resistances that make the light and the rebellions that summon us not to desist from the new world that is emerging,” Frayba recalled.

Frayba was created in 1989, at the invitation of the then bishop of the diocese of San Cristobal de Las Casas, Samuel Ruiz García, and with the passage of time became an indespensable reference for the defense of human rights, in particular indigenous peoples, not only locally, but nationally and internationally.

On the 27th and 28th of this month, as part of the anniversary, a “Festival of Human Rights” will also take place in San Cristobal de Las Casas.

For more information in Spanish:

Centro de Derechos Humanos Fray Bartolomé de las Casas cumple 30 años en defensa de pueblos y comunidades indígenas (Chiapas Paralelo, 19 de marzo de 2019)

Frente a la violencia, la espiral de luchas y resistencias: Informe Frayba (Frayba, 19 de marzo de 2019)

Festejan en Chiapas los 30 años del Frayba; clérigos resaltan legado de Samuel Ruiz García (Proceso, 19 de marzo de 2019)

Frayba entrega informe de derechos humanos (Cuarto Poder, 20 de marzo de 2019)

Crisis de derechos humanos, legado de Peña y Velasco en Chiapas: Frayba (La Jornada, 20 de marzo de 2019)

For more information from SIPAZ:

Chiapas: Frayba Presents its Annual Report “Paths of Resistance” (December 28, 2016)

Chiapas: 25-year anniversary of “Frayba” (March 30, 2014)

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National/International: Mexico Accepts 262 of 264 UN Recommendations from 2018 Universal Periodic Review (UPR)

March 21, 2019

UN.png

On March 14th, the Mexican State accepted 262 of the 264 recommendations issued by the United Nations (UN) Human Rights Council last November, in the context of the third Universal Periodic Review (UPR). It should be remembered that during these examinations, the situation of human rights in the assessed country is analyzed and each State makes a series of recommendations that are added to a final report.

The Mexican State took note of the recommendation proposed by the Vatican in the sense of “respecting and defending life from conception to natural death” on the grounds that it would be unconstitutional to accept it due to several resolutions of the Supreme Court of Justice of the Nation that guarantee the legal interruption of pregnancy for several reasons, for example in case of rape.

The second recommendation that Mexico did not admit was the ratification of the Kampala measures to the Statute of Rome, to attain a caregorization of the crime of aggression so that it can be made known to the International Criminal Court (ICC), requesting more time to make that decision.

Cristopher Ballinas, general director of Human Rights and Democracy of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs -which led the Mexican delegation- reported that the Mexican government would create a platform to process the more than 2,800 international recommendations that the country has received since 1994, which he proposes to do in collaboration with civil society organizations. He expressed that the decisions were taken to “maintain a policy of openness to scrutiny and collaboration with international organizations in the field of human rights, in parallel with the defense and enforcement at the national level.” He acknowledged that “the Mexican government is aware of the challenges that prevail in the country and is determined to take the necessary measures to guarantee the rule of law, based on a model that promotes the prevention of violence and the strengthening of institutions, the protection of human rights defenders and journalists, as well as the elimination of torture and other cruel, inhuman or degrading treatment or punishment.”

For their part, representatives of Mexican civil society at the event reiterated several concerns after the first 100 days of government of President Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador. On behalf of the Mexican Commission for the Defense and Protection of Human Rights, the defender Tita Radilla, daughter of Rosendo Radilla, victim of enforced disappearance in 1974, and actor Luis Gerardo Mendez, warned of the fact that “we are concerned that after only 100 days of management, 14 human rights defenders and journalists have been killed”, among other issues. They also expressed their concern about “the attempts of the president (Lopez Obrador) to discredit the work of civil society organizations, many of whom accompany victims of human rights violations and whose work is at risk in a hostile environment in their defense.” Gerardo Mendez also called for “the government of Mexico to undertake an adequate and effective communication and follow-up mechanism with civil society organizations, with human rights defenders and with victims, in order to fully comply with the recommendations made today and accepted by the government of Mexico.”

In turn, the president of the National Commission of Human Rights (CNDH in its Spanish acronym) Luis Raul Gonzalez Perez, urged the government of Lopez Obrador to ensure that the National Guard is led by a civilian command and that the Army withdraws from the streets in five years: “Security requires a comprehensive approach, not just reactive measures based on the use of force.” He stressed that “in the three cycles of the UPR, the issue of justice, security and the rule of law have led to multiple recommendations to Mexico and are currently cause for concern.” He also called on the government to “build bridges with the academy, with civil society, with autonomous agencies, with international organizations and something fundamental, that the victims are heard.”

For more information in Spanish:

Proteger a periodistas y activistas; frenar desapariciones y erradicar feminicidios, compromisos de gobierno de AMLO ante la ONU (Aristegui Noticias, 15 de marzo de 2019)

México admite 262 de 264 recomendaciones de ONU (La Jornada, 15 de marzo de 2019)

OSC reprueban gestión de AMLO en materia de derechos humanos ante la ONU (Proceso, 14 de marzo de 2019)

México: El EPU debe utilizarse para abordar retos fundamentales en materia de derechos humanos (Amnistía Internacional, 14 de marzo de 2019)

For more information from SIPAZ:

International/National: Mexico’s 2018 Universal Periodic Review (UPR) (November 14, 2018)

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

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

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


Guerrero/National: More Information Published on Role of Army in Ayotzinapa Case

March 15, 2019

ayotzi@Cuartoscuro

The National Commission of Human Rights (CNDH in its Spanish acronym) has reported that it has corroborated a link between organized crime and the Mexican government in the forced disappearance of the 43 students of the Normal Rural School of Ayotzinapa in Iguala, Guerrero, on September 26th, 2014. In addition, the Commission has declared that there was “connivance or collusion” between the local, state, and federal governments regarding the follow-up of the case. Additionally, the CNDH has indicated obstacles on the part of the authorities during its investigation that led to a series of recommendations at the end of 2018.

In December, Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador (AMLO) in one of his first acts as the new president created by decree the Commission for Truth and Access to Justice in the Ayotzinapa case. On March 11th, the Inter-American Commission on Human Rights (IACHR) presented the Technical Support Group (TSG) that will provide technical support to the Mexican authorities to arrive at the truth in the facts. In presenting the new work plan, the president of the IACHR and rapporteur of that agency for Mexico, Esmeralda Arosamena de Troitiño, applauded the position of the new federal authorities, which unlike the previous administration, have opened an impulse that represents “a historic opportunity to break impunity.” During the event, the Undersecretary of the Interior for Human Rights, Alejandro Encinas, remarked that the TSG will technically support all the open criminal investigation lines, which were not followed by the former Attorney General’s Office.

One of the most delicate in this sense is the role that the Mexican Army could have played in the events. On March 12th, a video was published that shows that Julio Cesar Lopez Patolzin, one of the 43 missing student teachers, had been recruited by the Secretariat of National Defense (SEDENA in its Spanish acronym) to infiltrate the Ayotzinapa School.

Faced with this, civil organizations accompanying the families of the 43 students declared that the video shows that the army “did not deliver or have given all the information it has about the Iguala case and its context (…) to more than four and a half years after the events.”

The second reason for concern, they said, is that it confirmed that SEDENA practices the infiltration of the Ayotzinapa School, which “does not delegitimize in any way the requirement of the relatives of Julio Cesar to know the whereabouts of their son.”

Finally, they stressed that this new material “confirms the urgent need for a thorough investigation into the role of the Armed Forces in this new phase” and that they provide “all information in their possession that is relevant to the full clarification of the whereabouts of the 43 students, as ordered in the presidential decree that instructed to establish effective material, legal and human conditions, to strengthen the human rights of the relatives of the victims of the Ayotzinapa case to the truth and access to justice, signed, among other authorities, by the President of the Republic, the Secretary of the Interior, the Secretary of National Defense and the Secretary of the Navy.”

For more information in Spanish:

CNDH a ONU: “obstáculos y negativas” en caso Iguala (Milenio, 14 de marzo de 2019.)

Proceso y la historia del normalista-soldado infiltrado en Ayotzinapa (Proceso, 14 de marzo de 2019)

CNDH presenta recomendación por violaciones graves en caso Ayotzinapa (Excelsior, 13 de marzo de 2019.)

Normalista de Ayotzinapa desaparecido era infiltrado de la Sedena (VIDEO) (Radio Formula, 13 de marzo de 2019)

Un normalista de Ayotzinapa era militar e informante del Ejército: reporte (ADN Politico, 13 de marzo de 2019.)

Señalan necesidad de esclarecer papel del Ejército en caso Ayotzinapa SIDIDH, 13 de marzo de 2019.)

Abren, formalmente, nueva etapa de investigación por caso Ayotzinapa (La Jornada, 11 de marzo de 2019)

For more information from SIPAZ:

Guerrero/National: Commission for Truth and Access to Justice in Ayotzinapa Case Set Up. Federal Judge Orders Investigation into Possible Responsibility of Attorney General Employees for Irregularities (January 22nd, 2019)

Guerrero/National: Decree Establishes Truth Commission for Ayotzinapa Case

(December 19th, 2018)

Guerrero/National/International: CNDH and IACHR Ayotzinapa Reports  (December 14th, 2018)

Guerrero/National: Ayotzinapa, Four Years On…  (October 1st, 2018)

Guerrero/National: Incoming Government Confirms Creation of Truth Commission for Ayotzinapa Case (Aug. 13th, 12018)

 


National/International: Mexico Ranked 99th of 126 in Rule of Law Index – World Justice Project

March 12, 2019

Index.pngPhoto @ CentroPro DH

At the end of February, the civil organization World Justice Project (WJP) published its “Index on Rule of Law 2019”, in which Mexico was ranked 99 out of 126 listed countries, worse than countries such as Liberia, Sierra Leone and its neighbor, Guatemala. At a Latin American level, Mexico is still considered one of the countries with the least respect for the rule of law, ranking 26 out of 30.

The results obtained by the WJP are “based on surveys in 120,000 households and 3,800 experts in 126 countries, and measures the perception and experience of the general population of the rule of law in practical and everyday situations.” The Index evaluates eight key categories: Limits to Government Power, Absence of Corruption, Open Government, Fundamental Rights, Order and Security, Regulatory Compliance, Civil Justice, and Criminal Justice.

Leslie Solis, researcher in the project, highlights in the report published by Animal Politico that the hot spots that Mexico should dedicate “immediate attention” to are: corruption, security and criminal justice. These factors are the worst valued by the citizens and the experts consulted, being in second last place regionally in two of the three categories. Jorge Morales, a member of WJP, adds that, “the rule of law in Mexico has not improved in recent years. Therefore, it is necessary to begin to change this situation with decisions based on evidence and data such as those shown in this Index, because these data will serve to identify weaknesses and strengths, and what are the priorities in the public policies to be developed, so that they have an impact on the population.”

Globally, the three countries with the highest rates are: Denmark, ranking leader, Norway and Finland; the last three, the Democratic Republic of the Congo, Cambodia and Venezuela, occupying last place. It is striking that in general more countries have obtained lower scores than the previous year, which according to the researchers “is a sign that suggests an increase in authoritarianism, the score of the factor ‘Limits to Government Power’ was the one that showed the highest deterioration: 61 countries decreased, 23 remained the same, and 29 improved.”

The founder of WJP, William Neukom, reiterates that, “the Rule of Law is the basis for communities to enjoy peace, equality and opportunities.” That is why the results of this research project are important as “a first step to establish reference points, inform and direct reforms.”

For more information in Spanish:

México, entre los países del mundo donde menos respeto hay por el Estado de Derecho: World Justice Project (Animal Político, 28 de febrero de 2019)

El Estado de Derecho continúa debilitándose en el mundo (World Justice Project, 28 de ferbrero de 2019)

México más corrupto que Venezuela: estudio de WJP 2019 (Vanguardia, 1 de marzo de 2019)

For more infromation from SIPAZ:

Chiapas: denuncian grave incremento de la violencia feminicida en el primer bimestre de 2019 (18 de febrero de 2019)

Nacional/Internacional: ONU-DH condena asesinatos de defensores y periodistas en Chiapas y Baja California. Cuestiona eficacia del Mecanismo de protección gubernamental para dichos sectores (25 de enero de 2019)

International/National: Mexico’s 2018 Universal Periodic Review (UPR) (November 14th, 2018)

International/National: Human Rights Watch Publishes Report on Human Rights Situation in Mexico and the World
(February 4th, 2018)

 


Guerrero: Gonzalo Molina, Tixtla CRAC PC, Released

March 7, 2019

CRAC.png@Desinformemonos

On February 28th, after five years, three months and 22 days in prison, the promoter of the Regional Coordinator of Community Authorities-Community Police (CRAC-PC in its Spanish acronym) of Tixtla, Gonzalo Molina Gonzalez, was released.

He had been detained on November 6th, 2013, when he was protesting against the arrest of Nestora Salgado, today senator for MORENA and at that time commander of the CRAC-PC in the municipality of Olinala. He was accused of deprivation of liberty, robbery and terrorism with a total of ten criminal charges against him. Since his arrest, he was in Miahuitlan jail, Oaxaca; in the maximum security prison of the Altiplano, in the state of Mexico, and finally in the Social Readaptation Center of Chilpancingo, Guerrero.

“I showed that I am innocent, that there is no crime to investigate, that CRAC is within the legal framework and we will continue to work because that is what 701 law permits”, he said.

“The indigenous peoples, who for more than 500 years have resisted looting and discrimination, have to organize ourselves. Megaprojects of death are promoted, and we will not allow that, because our peoples have a different worldview than the capitalist system”, he added.

For more information in Spanish:

Liberan a Gonzalo Molina, líder de la Policía Comunitaria en Tixtla (La Jornada, 1ero de marzo de 2019)

Guerrero: Dictan auto de libertad a Gonzalo Molina, preso político de la CRAC-PC (Desinformémonos, 28 de febrero de 2019)

Liberan al promotor de la CRAC-PC Gonzalo Molina tras casi 6 años (Quadratin Guerrero, 28 de febrero de 2019)
Gonzalo Molina, preso hace 5 años por supuesto terrorismo, queda libre en Guerrero (Sin Embargo, 28 de febrero de 2019)

For more information from SIPAZ:

Guerrero: 19 aniversario de la CRAC-Policía Comunitaria (11 de noviembre de 2014)

Guerrero: demand for release of political prisoners in observance of the eleventh anniversary of CECOP (September 2nd, 2014)

Guerrero: Police operation provokes confrontations and new arrest of member of CRAC-PC in Tixtla (March 30th, 2014)

Guerrero: Ministerial Police detain Gonzalo Molina, CRAC promoter, in Tixtla (November 14th, 2013)

 


National: Judge Recognizes Migrant Caravan Children and Adolescents as Refugees

March 6, 2019

Kids.pngPhoto @ SIPAZ

On February 18th, the Network for the Rights of Children in Mexico (REDIM) reported at a press conference that a Mexican judge issued a ruling, number 86/2018, in favor of the rights of migrant minors in Mexico.

According to information from Proceso, the ruling “provides ample protection” for migrant children “by recognizing that the Mexican State and particularly COMAR [Mexican Commission for Refugee Aid] omitted collectively to recognize refuge for all children and adolescents who are part of the caravans through the prima facie recognition contemplated in Mexican legislation (…) prima facie recognition means that, faced with a massive influx of asylum seekers, a situation that deserves collective protection is evident, without waiting for analysis of each individual case.”

The resolution means that COMAR must provide refugee status to all the children and adolescents that are part of the migrant caravans. If they want to obtain refuge in Mexico, they will get it in a “pre-approved” manner and it will not be necessary to carry out the usual procedure that normally lasts between six months and one year.

In addition, “Mexican institutions are obliged to recognize migrant children as a vulnerable population, to which the Mexican State has an obligation to protect, and neither they nor their families can be deported.”

They pointed out that the authorities have been omitted to provide comprehensive protection to migrant children and that the Mexican State is obliged to draw up an “intervention plan through a comprehensive diagnosis of protection needs.”

For more information in Spanish:

Instruyen a la Comar a acelerar calidad de refugiados a migrantes menores de edad (Proceso, 18 de febrero de 2019)

Conferencia de Prensa: Juez de amparo reconoce como refugiados a niñas niños y adolescentes de las caravanas migrantes. (REDIM, 18 de febrero de 2019)

For more information from SIPAZ:

International: IACHR Asks Honduras and Guatemala to Respect Human Rights (March 6th, 2019)

International/National: Registration of Humanitarian Visas for Migrants Closes

(February 12th, 2019)

International/Mexico: Xenophobic Violence Erupts Against Migrants in Tecun Uman

(February 1st, 2019)

National/International: 181 Countries Approve United Nations Global Pact for Refugees

(January 4th, 2019)

National/International: 164 Countries Approve UN Global Migration Pact (January 2nd, 2019)


International: IACHR Asks Honduras and Guatemala to Respect Human Rights

March 6, 2019

IACHR.pngPhoto @ BBC

On February 19th, the Inter-American Commission on Human Rights (IACHR) expressed its concern in a press release about the human rights situation of migrants and refugees that make up caravans that since January began to settle in San Pedro Sula, Honduras.

The IACHR informed that they received information that members, mostly Hondurans, of a caravan, which is headed to Mexico and the United States, “faced various obstacles to leave their country, such as the establishment of at least seven roadblocks, blockades with human fences formed by agents of different security bodies, and filters implemented by the police that requested identity documents at the border checkpoint. Likewise, the use of force was recorded by the Honduran police, who allegedly fired tear gas towards the caravan, wounding several people, including children and adolescents (…) as a consequence, many people, including families and children, and girls, decided to avoid regular crossings, using more dangerous routes through blind spots.”

On the Guatemalan side of the border, they documented the use of force by Guatemalan authorities, “as well as the use of a riot police barrier with batons, rubber bullets and weapons, which only gave way to women with children.”

In the communiqué they reminded the Honduran and Guatemalan states, “that any person has the right to freely leave any country, including their own, in terms of Article 22.2 of the American Convention on Human Rights. Likewise, the impossibility of leaving their country may also imply a restriction on the right to seek and receive asylum, in accordance with the provisions of Article 22.7 of the American Convention.”

In addition “that the use of force in migratory operations should be used only in compliance with the principles of legitimate purpose, absolute necessity and proportionality; and that migrants do not pose a threat to national security and that the human rights of migrants and refugees are guaranteed, including the right to seek and receive asylum, the right to non-repatriation.”

In this regard, the Rapporteur on the Rights of Migrants of the IACHR noted: “Today more than ever we must remember that migration is not a crime. The massive migratory movements that we have been observing for several years are a reflection of the situation of generalized violence, discrimination, poverty and inequality faced by people in a greater situation of exclusion in the countries of the Northern Triangle.”

For more information in Spanish:

CIDH insta a garantizar derechos de personas que integran la caravana de migrantes y refugiados en Honduras y Guatemala (CIDH, 19 de febrero de 2019)

CIDH insta a Guatemala y Honduras a garantizar derechos de migrantes (24-horas, 20 de febrero de 2019)

For more information from SIPAZ:

International/National: Registration of Humanitarian Visas for Migrants Closes
(February 12th, 2019)

International/Mexico: Xenophobic Violence Erupts Against Migrants in Tecun Uman
(February 1st, 2019)

National/International: New Migrant Caravans Arrive at Border; Others Advance through Mexico (January 28th, 2019)

National/International: New Migrant Caravan Reaches Mexico (January 23rd, 2019)

National/International: 181 Countries Approve United Nations Global Pact for Refugees

(January 4th, 2019)

National/International: 164 Countries Approve UN Global Migration Pact (January 2nd, 2019)