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

November 15, 2019

Arnulfo

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:

COMUNICADO | SE CUMPLE UN MES DE LA DESAPARICIÓN DEL DEFENSOR DE DERECHOS HUMANOS ARNULFO CERÓN SORIANO (CDH Tlachinollan, 12 de noviembre de 2019)

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

UN

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)


National: CNDH Demands Clarification of Crimes against Journalists in Mexico – 90% Remain in Impunity

November 8, 2019

 

Reporters@Futuro

On November 2nd, within the framework of the International Day to End Impunity for Crimes against Journalists, the National Human Rights Commission (CNDH in its Spanish acronym) demanded clarification of crimes against journalists which remain in impunity (90% of them according to their data).

It reported that “according to figures from this National Commission, since the year 2000, 153 homicides of journalists have been committed (16 were women), 21 more have been missing since 2005 and 53 attacks have been carried out against media facilities since 2006 , data that show the high level of violence that communicators face in Mexico.”

Their figures indicate that the states with the highest number of homicides against journalists are Veracruz, with 23 cases; Guerrero, 17; Tamaulipas and Oaxaca, 16 each, and Chihuahua, 14.

It finally added that 13 journalists were killed since the beginning of the government of Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador (AMLO) and stressed that impunity is due to the “lack of prompt, diligent, professional and effective investigations by the Attorney General’s Office and Prosecutors that have not taken into account as a line of investigation the journalistic exercise of the victims.”

It asked for “forceful actions by the authorities of the three levels of government to generate favorable environments so that journalists and media can carry out their activities with full freedom” as well as “the commitment of all the authorities, especially those with a position of special relevance in the public service, so that they respect and recognize the contributions that journalists and media make to strengthening democracy, avoiding at all times disqualifying or discrediting their work, since the latter contributes to generating smear campaigns that hinder the exercise of journalism and place them in conditions of greater risk.”

For more information in Spanish:

Oaxaca, mortal para periodistas (NVI Noticias, 4 de noviembre de 2019)

CNDH urge esclarecer crímenes contra periodistas en México (El Sol de México, 2 de noviembre de 2019)

Demanda CNDH esclarecer el 90% de crímenes contra periodistas que permanece en impunidad lacerante –13 en los últimos once meses— por falta de investigaciones prontas, diligentes, profesionales y eficaces de Procuradurías y Fiscalías (CNDH, 2 de noviembre de 2019)

Están bajo protección de Gobernación 80 oaxaqueños (El Universal, 30 de octubre de 2019)

For more information from SIPAZ:

National/International: UNO Presents Diagnostic of Protection Mechanism of Human Rights Defenders and Journalists (September 2, 2019)

Oaxaca: Founder and Director of Community Radio Murdered. Tenth Journalist Murdered under AMLO Government (May 10, 2019)

Oaxaca: organismos internacionales piden garantizar la seguridad de la periodista oaxaqueña Soledad Jarquín Edgar (7 de junio de 2019) (4 de mayo de 2019)

Oaxaca: Reportero herido en atentado inicia huelga de hambre ante retiro de escoltas y nulos avances en investigación. (23 de abril de 2019)

Oaxaca: periodista es herido con arma de fuego en el Istmo de Tehuantepec (22 de marzo de 2019)

Oaxaca: siete periodistas denuncian amenaza colectiva vía Facebook (14 de marzo de 2019) (14 de diciembre de 2018)


Chiapas/Mexico: Mexican Offers Public Apology to Indigenous Women Raped and Tortured by Military in Chiapas in 1994

October 22, 2019

ApologyPhoto: chiapasparalelo

On October 18th, a public apology was given in the central square of Ocosingo by the Mexican government to the Gonzalez Perez sisters for sexual torture 25 years ago.

On June 4th, 1994, soldiers deprived Ana, Beatriz, and Celia Gonzalez Perez, and their mother Delia Perez of their freedom when they tried to cross a Mexican Army checkpoint in Jalisco ejido, municipality of Altamirano. The military accused them of being members of the Zapatista Army of National Liberation (EZLN in its Spanish acronym), and punished them for this, raping them.

They were arrested and for two hours, through sexual torture, they tried to force them to declare themselves members of the armed group and to betray other people. They resisted and, when released, criminally denounced the facts, were subjected to examinations showing evidence of gang rape, but the case was taken over by martial law and closed, denying access to justice.

In 2001, the Inter-American Commission on Human Rights (IACHR) declared the responsibility of the Mexican State, demanding punishment for those responsible and reparation for the damage to the victims.

After 25 years, in the public square of the municipality of Ocosingo, through the voice of the Secretary of the Interior, Olga Sanchez Cordero, and the undersecretary of Human Rights, Alejandro Encinas, the Mexican government apologized to the Gonzalez Perez sisters, before some five hundred people, including public officials and inhabitants of the region.

During the event, the great absentee was the Mexican Army, the institution to which the men whom the sisters identified as their torturers belonged. Ana, Beatriz, Celia and their mother Delia, demanded during all these years, that they be military commanders who recognize the facts, who apologize and who are brought to justice. In Ana’s words: “This act of public apology is not really an act of public apology because we clearly said that we wanted representatives of the SEDENA to be present for them to ask us for a public apology, because they were the ones who committed the grievances. This public apology is not complete.”

In the indigenous normative system, it is the person responsible for the crime who must ask for forgiveness, because it is their identification before the community. Ana insisted that they reject the presence of military personnel in indigenous areas. “We do not want the military in our villages, because the government says they are the ones who protect us, but on the contrary, they are the ones who hurt us.”

Among the agreements that Olga Sanchez Cordero, Alejandro Encinas and the indigenous women signed, is to continue the investigation to bring to trial the soldiers involved. However, they insisted that this process not be individualized, and assume that the rape was not an independent or autonomous act committed by the soldiers, but an institutional action that obeyed a war strategy against the EZLN.

For more information in Spanish:

El Estado mexicano ofrece disculpa pública a indígenas torturadas y violadas por militares en Chiapas, Proceso, 18 de octubre de 2019

Ofrece el Estado Mexicano disculpas a indígenas violadas, La Jornada, 18 de octubre de 2019

Gobierno mexicano ofrece disculpa a indígenas violadas por el Ejército en 1994; “¿dónde está Sedena?”, preguntan ellas, Aristegui noticas, 18 de octubre de 2019

Video: Disculpa Publica Y Reconocimiento De Responsabilidad Que Ofrece El Estado Mexicano Ocosingo Chiapas, Youtube, 18 de octubre de 2019

For more information from SIPAZ:

Chiapas: Public Act of Recognition of State Responsibility in Gonzalez Sisters Case Announced (September 2, 2019)

Chiapas: Tzeltal Women Tortured and Raped by Military in 1994 Denounce Total Impunity (June 9, 2019)

Chiapas: Indigenous Tzeltal women raped by the Mexican Army accept “compensation” with conditions (October 25, 2010)


Oaxaca/International: WOAT Warns about State Inaction in Disappearance Case of Ernesto Sernas Garcia

October 17, 2019

Ernesto@Zona Roja

On October 10th, 17 months after the forced disappearance of Dr. Ernesto Sernas Garcia, the World Organization Against Torture (WOAT) published a video in which it denounced the inaction of the Mexican State in the case. Miguel Martin Zumalacarregui, Director of the WOAT in Brussels, Belgium, called on the federal authorities to “take action on the matter,” as well as to initiate an effective search to find Sernas Garcia’s whereabouts and he be presented alive. It also reiterated its support for those who make up the Sol Rojo (Red Sun) organization.

“It has been 500 days, 500 days in what has been an important mobilization by human rights organizations in Oaxaca, Mexico and internationally, 500 days in which it has been achieved that the United Nations Rapporteur show her concern with on the subject, 500 days in which the Mexican authorities have not taken action on the matter,” it said.

It should be remembered that, according to the Front Line Defender organization, on May 10th, 2018, the lawyer and university professor Dr. Ernesto Sernas Garcia disappeared in San Agustin de las Juntas, Oaxaca. His disappearance “coincided with a crucial moment of a criminal process in which he legally represented 23 defenders, whose detention in 2015 was declared arbitrary by the United Nations Working Group on Arbitrary Detention in its Opinion 17/2016. The case is being followed by the UN Committee against Enforced Disappearances and four members of the UN Working Group on Enforced or Involuntary Disappearances condemned the lack of significant progress in the investigation.”

For more information in Spanish:

Dr. Sernas Presentación con vida (OMCT, 10 de octubre de 2019)

Denuncia OMCT inacción del Estado para iniciar búsqueda efectiva de Ernesto Sernas (El Universal, 11 de octubre de 2019)

Organización Mundial contra la Tortura exige aparición con vida de Ernesto Sernas (Zona Roja, 12 de octubre de 2019)

For more information from SIPAZ :

Oaxaca/Internacional: A un año de su desaparición, no hay avances en la desaparición del defensor de derechos humanos Ernesto Sernas García (May 16, 2019)

Oaxaca: 22 Members of Sol Rojo (Red Sun) Released (November 14, 2018)


Guerrero: Disappearance of Activist in Tlapa de Comonfort Reported. Member of Regional Council of Agrarian Authorities in Malinaltepec

October 17, 2019

GuerreroPhoto @ Tlachinollan

In the afternoon of October 11th, a member of the Popular Front of La Montaña (FPM in its Spanish acronym) and the Movement for the Freedom of Political Prisoners of the State of Guerrero (MOLPEG in its Spanish acronym), Arnulfo Ceron Soriano, was reported missing in Tlapa de Comonfort.

According to a public complaint from the La Montaña Tlachinollan Human Rights Center, relatives reported that the last information they had about him was when Ceron Soriano “left his home to go to talk at a recovery center for Alcoholics Anonymous (AA), located in the Caltitlan neighborhood Tlapa de Comonfort city, Guerrero, where he never arrived.”

On October 12th, the van in which “the activist Ceron Soriano was traveling in the Magisterio neighborhood was found abandoned, even with the keys in it, without any further indication of him. Due to these facts, a complaint was lodged with the Office of the Special Prosecutor for Enforced Disappearance and Search for Missing Persons in the city of Chilpancingo, Guerrero, to which the investigation file number 12022510400165121019 was assigned.”

According to different newspapers 11 social organizations have stressed “that Cerón Soriano accused the mayor of Tlapa of having threatened him because of the defense he made so that street traders were not evicted.”

On October 13th, social and family organizations “took over the town hall of Tlapa to demand the mayor’s presentation of the indigenous leader and demanded that the Ministerial Police, the State, the National Guard begin an operation” to find the missing activist.

For its part, the State of Guerrero Human Rights Commission (CDHEG in its Spanish acronym), urged the corresponding agencies of the state and federal government, to speed up investigations.

During the same weekend, on Friday, Isaias “N”, president of the Commissariat of Paraje Montero Communal Assets, in the municipality of Malinaltepec, was killed, El Sol de Acapulco reported. The victim “had attended meetings in the morning that Friday and in the afternoon on his return he was murdered near the police station.” He was “member of the Regional Council of Agricultural Authorities in Defense of the Territory (CRAADT in its Spanish acronym), which opposes the mining exploitation of the region.”

For more information in Spanish:

ACCIÓN URGENTE: DESAPARECEN AL LUCHADOR SOCIAL DE LA MONTAÑA: ARNULFO CERÓN SORIANO (Tlachinollan, 13 de octubre de 2019)

Exhorta la CDHEG agilizar investigaciones por desaparición de Arnulfo Cerón Soriano (El Sol de Acapulco, 13 de octubre de 2019)

Un defensor de la montaña de Guerrero es asesinado y otro es reportado desaparecido el fin de semana (Sin Embargo, 14 de octubre de 2019)

Identifican a tres hombres asesinados en distintos hechos (El Sol de Acapulco, 14 de octubre de 2019)

For more information from SIPAZ:

Guerrero: Declaran libres de minería los municipios de Malinaltepec y San Luis Acatlán. (October 8, 2019)

Guerrero: Denuncian una “campaña de desprestigio” en contra de una abogada de Tlachinollan y una reportera del El Sur de Acapulco (11 de julio de 2019)


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

October 16, 2019

CONAVIM

At a press conference on October 8th, more than 350 civil society organizations and human rights defenders from 17 states of the Republic asked President Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador and the Ministry of the Interior (SEGOB in its Spanish acronym), Olga Sanchez Cordero, to remove the current head of the National Commission to Prevent and Eradicate Violence Against Women (CONAVIM in its Spanish acronym), Maria Candelaria Ochoa Avalos, from office, considering that Ochoa Avalos “has not promoted or carried out forceful actions that can address the problem that every day ends the lives of ten women.”

They also claimed that Ochoa Avalo prevents the active participation of civil society organizations in the mechanisms for monitoring Gender Violence Alerts (GVA) declared in the country. “The commissioner has shown and told us, in practice and in court, that we have no dialogue with her, that she has no capacity for dialogue. We are not questioning if she is an expert on the issue of violence against women, we are questioning her inability to dialogue with the organizations that are with the victims fighting for access to justice day by day,” they claimed. They also denounced her role in delaying the declaration for Mexico City, as well as in rejecting the issuance of a GVA in Zacatecas and Verecruz.

“Instead of complying with its obligations in the implementation of the GVA mechanism and designing the implementation plans and methodology for monitoring and evaluating the 19 declared GVAs and convening the monitoring groups – as requested in several states – the current commissioner has been dedicated to sidelining organizations to prosecute women’s rights, instead of guaranteeing them as mandated,” the signatories said. More generally, they also considered that more than seven months after the presentation of the Government Plan of Emerging Actions to Guarantee the Integrity, Security and Life of Women and Girls of Mexico, “to date, the solution to the problem has not had considerable progress, contrary to this, the violence remains and intensifies.”

For more information in Spanish:

ONG exigen renuncia de la titular de Conavim; la acusan de obstaculizar acceso a la justicia de las mujeres (Animal Político, 8 de octubre de 2019)

Organizaciones demandan la renuncia de la titular de Conavim (La Jornada, 8 de octubre de 2019)

Víctimas y organizaciones civiles exigen renuncia de la titular de Conavim (Vanguardia, 8 de octubre de 2019)

CARTA PÚBLICA : Ante omisión y falta de eficacia,ONG exigen renuncia de Titular de CONAVIM (OSC, 8 de octubre de 2019)

Vídeo de la conferencia de prensa (OSC, 8 de octubre de 2019)

For more information from SIPAZ:

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)