National/International: UNO Requests Mexican Government to Adopt Protection Measures for Human Rights Defenders

June 30, 2020

consorcio-oaxaca-870x522© ohchr

On June 29th, the Special Rapporteur on the situation of UN human rights defenders, Mary Lawlor, expressed in a statement “her grave concern at the intimidation, threats and killings to which human rights defenders are subjected in Mexico.” This, after the members of the Oaxaca Consortium organization on June 15th were victims of threats allegedly by an organized crime group.

“The level of vulnerability that defenders are in in certain regions of Mexico is extremely worrying. It is even more worrisome to observe the extraordinary risks faced by women human rights defenders and those who are dedicated to fighting for women’s rights”, the rapporteur said. In addition, she emphasized that Mexico has international obligations and, therefore, it must guarantee the protection of human rights defenders, especially against violations committed by agents of the State and private entities. She called on the Mexican government “to take measures to prevent future violations and to take retrospective measures in response to the violations already inflicted.”

The incorporation of a gender perspective to face the specific risks and security needs of human rights defenders, of those who work in the field of women’s rights or gender issues, is of utmost importance in Mexico, a country where gender violence continues, Lawlor emphasized.

For more information in Spanish:

Una serie de amenazas contra integrantes del Consorcio Oaxaca (United Nations Special Rapporteur, 29 de junio 2020)

Relatora sobre personas defensoras y otros expertos de la ONU exigen garantías para Consorcio Oaxaca y castigo a los responsables de amenaza en su contra. (Consorcio Oaxaca, 29 de junio 2020)

Garantías para Consorcio Oaxaca, exigen relatores de la ONU (Proceso, 29 de junio 2020)

México: Experta de la ONU insta a garantizar la protección de las defensoras de derechos humanos (Naciones Unidas México, 29 de junio 2020)

For more information from SIPAZ: 

Oaxaca: Death Threat at Door of Oaxaca Consortium Office (June 17, 2020)

National/International: Food Insecurity Increases for LGBTIQ+ Community in Pandemic (June 24, 2020)

National: UNO Supports CONAPRED (June 22, 2020)

National: Reform Of Law for Protection of Human Rights Defenders and Journalists Debated in Context of Greater Vulnerability in Pandemic (May 26, 2020)

Chiapas: Las Abejas Civil Society Denounces Persecution and Murder of Human Rights Defenders and Protectors of Mother Earth and other Violent Situations (February 25, 2020)

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


National/International: Women’s Challenges in COVID-19 – A Latin American Balance

June 17, 2020

ONU Mujeres© Twitter INMUJERES

On June 12th, the online conversation “Women’s Human Rights: Challenges before COVID-19” was held, convened by the Ministry of Foreign Relations, the Commission for Gender Equality, the National Institute for Women and UN Women. Different national and international political figures participated in this event, including Marcelo Ebrard, Secretary of Foreign Relations; Olga Sanchez Cordero, Secretary of the Interior; Michelle Bachelet, UN High Commissioner for Human Rights and Alicia Barcena, Executive Secretary of the Economic Commission for Latin America and the Caribbean (ECLAC).

This meeting allowed to take stock of the situation that women in Mexico and Latin America have lived, and continue to live, but with the aggravating circumstance of the pandemic. It was recognized that women have been the most affected not only by issues of gender violence but also by unpaid work, the situation of poverty, food, unemployment, job insecurity, and the participation of nearly 80% of women in the frontline against the pandemic that continues to prevent them from other activities.

Ricardo Montreal, a MORENA senator, spoke about progress in equality with the recent mandatory gender parity policy in government institutions, as well as that of granting labor rights to domestic workers. In this sense, the regional director for the Americas and the Caribbean of UN Women affirmed that Mexico is a leader in legislative works, especially when 75% of Latin American congresses are made up, mostly, of men.

Marcelo Ebrard acknowledged that there will be a setback in terms of poverty after the pandemic, but he also expressed the importance of the government being progressive and feminist to face this situation. Similarly, the Ministry of the Interior declared: “The new normal will be feminist or it will not be”, recognizing that the State must listen to and empower women through the creation of public policies that make women’s rights tangible and justiciable.

Michelle Bachelet, for her part, stressed the importance of multilateralism and of making a “gradual and careful” reopening to overcome the pandemic. She invited us to rethink life after the pandemic regarding our practices as a society and affirmed that “the answers cannot be neutral or equal for everyone, but you have to think about how you focus because there are sectors that are more vulnerable.”

Alicia Barcena presented the Gender Equality Observatory in which statistics are retrieved at the Latin American level of the conditions of women in different aspects. “The social impact of the pandemic has a woman’s face”, declared the Executive Secretary of CEPA and said that the backdrop for the pandemic is the culture of privilege, which naturalizes inequalities, discrimination and addresses equity, not equality with a welfare approach and not empowerment and insisted that “this crisis should lead us to a change in the development model.”

For more information in Spanish: 

Observatorio de Igualdad de género (CEPAL)

Gobierno advierte que pandemia dejará estragos en mujeres (Expansión política, 12 de junio 2020)

La nueva normalidad será en feminista o no será: Segob (El Universal, 13 de junio 2020)

For more information from SIPAZ: 

Chiapas: Women Prisoners in CERSS No. 5 Denounce Violence in COVID-19 Pandemic (June 8, 2020)

Oaxaca: “Femicidal Violence, The Endless Pandemic”, Oaxaca Consortium (June 8, 2020)

National: Controversy over “Count to Ten” Federal Campaign against Violence (June 4, 2020)

Nacional: Declaraciones de AMLO con respecto a la violencia de género provoca reacciones de diversos actores. (May 19,2020)

National: Cuts for Indigenous Women in Violent Situations (May 15, 2020)

Chiapas: Woman Dies Violently Every Two Days in the State (April 16, 2020)

 


National/International: First Latin American Encounter “We Embrace Horizons Facing Disappearances”

June 16, 2020

índice

From June 9th to 12th, the online encounter “Latin American Meeting #We Embrace Horizons Facing Disappearances” (#AbramosHorizontes ante las desapariciones) was held, convened by Citizens in Support of Human Rights (CADHAC), Services and Advice for Peace (SERAPAZ) and the Foundation for Due Process. The event set out to “nurture the debate in Mexico on this serious phenomenon that affects so many families and the entire country, as well as glimpse the challenges faced by institutions, academia and civil society to eradicate this practice and give forceful responses.”

It included different tables with panelists: Table 1 “Latin America: from disappearances to responses”; Table 2: “Mexico facing the missing persons crisis”; Table 3: “Experiences from the family movement”, and Table 4 “The Experience of Nuevo Leon”.

The table that generated the most media coverage was the second, with the participation of the Deputy Secretary for Human Rights of the Interior, Alejandro Encinas, who has led the government’s human rights agenda since the beginning of the presidency of Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador (AMLO).

The undersecretary affirmed that progress has been made both in the legislative field and in the consolidation of a new institutional scaffolding so that the legislative changes are reflected in facts. However, he acknowledged that multiple challenges remain to reach justice and truth in the problem of disappearances in Mexico (61,000 cases today). He pointed out, among them, impunity and corruption, as well as inertia and resistance in some states of the republic in particular and in their prosecutors when it comes to supporting the tasks of searching for people and identifying bodies exhumed in clandestine graves. This, he affirmed because these players continue in the logic of wanting to minimize or hide the problem. He ratified the will of the federal government to continue with these tasks regardless of that. He acknowledged that, although in Mexico there is a General Law to Prevent and Punish the Forced Disappearance of Persons, to date there is no sentence in the country for a case of disappearance in general. He announced that in the following days he will announce the results of the data update on the matter together with the National Search Commission (CNB).

He also stated that 272,800,000 pesos (of the 341 million programmed) have been channeled to the local search commissions, which will help to have capabilities in equipment and infrastructure, as well as to promote actions for the identification of localized people. Contrary to the information circulated by the CEAV due to the policy of proposed cuts to face the impacts of the pandemic, Encinas guaranteed that there will be no budget cut this year for the work of searching for people and that no program related to human rights will be affected.

During this same event, Santiago Corcuera, former president of the UN Committee against Enforced Disappearances, affirmed that the phenomenon of disappearance was on the rise in the six-year term of Felipe Calderon, continued in that of Enrique Peña Nieto, and remains in the current federal government, so a different drug policy is required to prevent them from happening again. For this reason, he questioned the formation of the National Guard as a follow-up to a strategy that has not worked. As for the national registry, he questioned that it is not yet configured; “We have been more than a year and it is still not created, due to the indolence of local authorities that do not report the cases.” Santiago Corcuera also insisted on another pending issue: the recognition of the UN committee to hear cases of torture and disappearances in Mexico.

For more information in Spanish:

Mesa 1 América Latina de las desapariciones a las respuestas (“Encuentro Latinoamericano #AbramosHorizontes ante las Desapariciones”, CADHAC, 9 de junio de 2020)

Mesa 2 México ante la crisis de personas desaparecidas (“Encuentro Latinoamericano #AbramosHorizontes ante las Desapariciones”, CADHAC, 10 de junio de 2020)

Mesa 3 Experiencia desde el movimiento de familias (“Encuentro Latinoamericano #AbramosHorizontes ante las Desapariciones”, CADHAC, 11 de junio de 2020)

Mesa 4 Experiencia de Nuevo León (“Encuentro Latinoamericano #AbramosHorizontes ante las Desapariciones”, CADHAC, 11 de junio de 2020)

Fiscalías renuentes a apoyar en búsqueda de desaparecidos: Encinas (Heraldo, 12 de junio de 2020)

Fiscalías se resisten a apoyar en búsqueda de desaparecidos: Encinas (Excelsior, 10 de junio de 2020)

Encinas acusa resistencias por parte de gobiernos estatales para enfrentar desaparición de personas (El Economista, 10 de junio de 2020)

For more information from SIPAZ:

National: Collectives of Victims of Violence Demand Dismissal of Head of Executive Commission for Attention to Victims (CEAV) and Request Meeting with AMLO (June 11, 2020)

National: Government Cuts Paralyze CEAV (June 8, 2020)

Mexico: Mothers Continue the Search for Their Disappeared Children on Their Day (May 13, 2020)

 


International: Resistances in Latin America Strengthened on World Environment Day

June 10, 2020

Recondpaz© Eco Caminata

In the framework of World Environment Day, the Latin American and Caribbean Water Forum was held during the COVID-19 emergency, which was held in the online event “Weaving Networks for Life: Defending Territory is Defending Life!”. During this forum, academics, activists, and environmental defenders from countries such as Puerto Rico, Paraguay, and Honduras, spoke of the challenges involved in defending the environment on the American continent during the pandemic.

Historic struggles by indigenous, Afro-American, and mestizo communities in Latin America, especially against extractive and agribusiness companies, continue despite the health emergency and the additional obstacles it represents. As in both Mexico and in other countries such as Brazil, Peru, Honduras, Guatemala, Bolivia and Ecuador these activities were considered ‘essential’, community resistance was limited by the confinement measures imposed by governments.

Pedro Landa, a researcher in environmental human rights, expressed the importance of joining local struggles to strengthen resistance at the global level. He did so after explaining the “artificial” separation suffered by the Mesoamerican countries but which today continue to defend the same resources and the same territory. He also emphasized the need to “denounce the responsibility of the extractive industries and complicit governments in human rights violations because they promote these types of industries, encourage and impose them, sometimes at gunpoint, of repression, of criminalization and the imprisonment of many defenders of the environment ”, as well as removing the legal shield with which these companies are protected.

Adriana Muñoz Perez, a Paraguayan activist, spoke of the resistance of women who developed an agri-food model since before the pandemic with the aim of fighting agribusiness that continues to expand and displace communities in this territory; and to reduce the economic impact on families by producing their own food. Even though today they are the protagonists of this fight, the pandemic has increased impunity, political persecution, corruption and social inequality for many sectors of the population.

As described in an Infobae article, the null action of the governments of Mexico and of other countries in Latin America against the protection of human rights to the environment, health and violation by companies has led to Citizen organizations leading the defense of these rights. However, these actions put the lives of human rights defenders at risk as there are no justice mechanisms and regulatory ambiguity, as noted by Benjamin Berlanga, head of the Coordination Unit for Social Participation and Transparency (UCPAST) of the Ministry of the Environment and Natural Resources (SEMARNAT).

In this sense, Pedro Landa called for a recognition and a tribute to all the men and women who have died for the defense of the environment rather than a celebration.

For more information in Spanish: 

Evento virtual: Tejiendo redes para la vida (Caminata ecológica, 5 de junio 2020)

Débiles mecanismos de justicia perpetúan agresiones a defensores ambientales (Contralínea, 1 de junio, 2020)

Suma México 499 agresiones a ecologistas en 7 años (QS Noticias, 5 de junio 2020)

La ciudadanía lidera defensa de derecho al medioambiente en América Latina (Infobae, 5 de junio 2020)

Día Mundial del Medio Ambiente, nada que celebrar (Excelsior, 4 de junio 2020)

For more information from SIPAZ: 

Nacional: Organizaciones ambientales denuncian recorte presupuestal de un 75% de la CONANP; “paralizará sus actividades fundamentales”

Nacional: Da AMLO banderazo del Tren Maya entre la pandemia y la inconformidad de la sociedad civil.

Oaxaca/Nacional: Más de 100 OSC rechazan proyecto del Corredor Transístmico a unos día de visita de AMLO

Nacional: fracking sigue en la 4T, denuncian; AMLO desmiente que así sea

Nacional: debaten iniciativa que reformaría la Ley para la Protección de Personas Defensoras de Derechos Humanos y Periodistas en un contexto de mayor vulnerabilidad para estos sectores debido a la pandemia

Chiapas: Comunicado por la defensa del agua en San Cristóbal de las Casas.

Chiapas : La empresa minera El Puntal S.A. de C.V y el Gobierno de Chiapas amenazan a defensores de Acacoyagua, denuncian

Nacional: CEMDA destaca que continua el riesgo para defensores del medio ambiente


National: Government Cuts Paralyze CEAV

June 8, 2020

Budgetary cuts announced by President Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador in the austerity decree of April 23rd will have serious implications for the Executive Commission for Attention to Victims (CEAV), the institution itself has warned.

The CEAV, the central body for the care of victims of crimes and serious human rights violations in Mexico, announced that the 75 percent reduction in expenses “will slow down its essential activities and paralyze its operation.”

In the CEAV publication they indicated that the cuts, among other things, will imply the loss of accommodation and protection of the National Registry of Victims (RENAVI), with all the personal data of more than 34,215 victims; it will not be possible to process the delivery of aid measures for more than five thousand victims per month and that the 1,100 resolutions and 610 judicial procedures in process will be left pending, some of which relate to recommendations of the CNDH, the Inter-American Court, the Inter-American Commission and the Office of the United Nations High Commissioner in Mexico.

Given the cuts, opposition legislators and members of civil groups expressed that the government is using the health emergency caused by COVID-19 to block the work of institutions that inconvenience it. Meanwhile the head of the CEAV, Mara Gomez Perez, said that she agrees that the government has to be austere, especially in these times and that the budget is not yet fully defined.

The day after the publication of the CEAV, the head of the Ministry of Finance and Public Credit (SHCP), Arturo Herrera, assured, after a meeting with the head of SEGOB, Olga Sanchez Cordero, and the undersecretary for Human Rights, Alejandro Encinas, that the cuts will not affect human rights issues.

For more information in Spanish:

DECRETO DE AUSTERIDAD PARALIZARÁ FUNCIONAMIENTO DE LA CEAV –  (SEGOB, 2 de junio)

Virtual extinción de la CEAV por el recorte.  (La jornada, 3 de junio)

No tenemos recursos para pagarle al personal: CEAV. (Aristegui Noticias, 2 de junio)

Colapso en Comisión de Víctimas por recorte: despedirán a 60% del personal y no hay ni para la renta. (AnimalPolitco, 2 de junio)

CEAV no será afectada con recortes al gasto: Arturo Herrera (La jornada, 3 de junio)

For more information from SIPAZ:

National: Cuts for Indigenous Women in Violent Situations(May 15, 2020)

National/International: Mexico and IACHR Formalize Reinstallation of IGIE for Ayotzinapa Case (May 11, 2020)

National: Reform Of Law for Protection of Human Rights Defenders and Journalists Debated in Context of Greater Vulnerability in Pandemic (May 26, 2020)

 


National: Numerous Collectives Call National and International Communities to Back Urgent Action against Maya Train

May 14, 2020

EZTM

@ Enlace Zapatista

On May 11th, different groups made a call to support an urgent action against the Maya Train project, since, despite the injunctions filed by the communities of Ocosingo, Palenque and Salto del Agua and the COVID-19 pandemic, work has not been suspended, thus violating the “Right to Health, life and active participation in the defense of their rights.”

It is expected that on May 14th, the Supreme Court of Justice of the Nation (SCJN) will resolve the definitive suspension of this project, which had been provisionally done by a Federal Judge in previous weeks.

Added to this is the decree published in the Official Gazette of the Federation, where the government announced that it will have the Armed Forces carry out public security tasks, which represents for indigenous peoples and communities not only “unleashing a war against the drug cartels, which impose dispossession of forests, waters, minerals, wood and facilitate the entry of business and government megaprojects, but also face corruption, the links it has with organized crime, its complicity with fuel theft, the acts of repression and dispossession of indigenous peoples and communities, the use of public force to impose megaprojects, the forced displacement that they cause in the communities, according to them to bring order, as well as the murders, rapes and the criminalization of social protest social.”

Given what is happening and could happen, it seeks to promote knowledge and resistance against the project in civil society through actions such as concentrating information on the subject for its dissemination; share the existing poster (s) and/or design new ones that denounce the project and its damages; write and disseminate pronouncements in this regard; identify campaign initiatives by existing Mexican citizen groups to support them, or launch one; promote saturation of phone calls or emails to SCJN, FONATUR, CNDH, etc., speaking out against the project; and, invite networks, groups, contacts, to join in the campaign tasks.

For more information in Spanish:

Diversos colectivos promueven acción virtual contra el proyecto de despojo nombrado tren maya (Enlace Zapatista, 11 de mayo 2020)

Urgen intervención de la CNDH para frenar obras del Tren Maya (Aristegui Noticias, 11 de mayo 2020)

¿Por qué decir ¡NO! al “Tren Maya”? (Los Hijos del Maíz- Tlax, 11 de mayo 2020)

For more information from SIPAZ:

National: Armed Forces Decreed Public Security Duties for Five Years; “Militarism Came out of the Closet” – CSO(May 14, 2020)

Chiapas: Federal Court Orders Suspension of Palenque Section of Maya Train; FONATUR Considers Injunction “Unfair” (May 13, 2020)

National: Online Forum “No to the Misnamed Maya Train”(May 5, 2020)

 

Oaxaca: Organizations, Communities and Movements Demand Suspension of Trans-Isthmus Project (May 2, 2020)

Oaxaca: Illegal Start on Trans-Isthmus Corridor without EIR Denounced (April 28, 2020)

National: Almost 200 Organizations Demand Halt to Maya Train Works During Emergency; AMLO Confirms Megaprojects Will Continue (April 25, 2020)

 


National/International: Mexico and IACHR Formalize Reinstallation of IGIE for Ayotzinapa Case

May 11, 2020

QueEsElGIEIIGIE in previous phase (@Centro PRO DH)

In a statement published on May 7th, the Interior and Foreign Relations Secretariats reported that the Mexican government signed an agreement with the Inter-American Commission on Human Rights (IACHR) for the reinstatement of the Interdisciplinary Group of Independent Experts (IGIE).

The objective in this new stage will be to provide international technical assistance for the advancement of investigations and to assist in the preparation of search plans, care for victims and other relevant aspects in the case of the forced disappearance of 43 students from Rural Normal School of Ayotzinapa in Iguala, Guerrero, in September 2014.

The statement explained that the process “was carried out taking into account the representation of the parents of the students, the Office in Mexico of the United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights, as well as the experts themselves who will form part of the International Group of Independent Experts.”

It specified that this action is part of the commitment established in the “Decree that instructs to establish effective material, legal and human conditions to strengthen the human rights of the relatives of the victims of the Ayotzinapa case to truth and access to justice”, issued by President Lopez Obrador on December 4th, 2018 and which raised, among other points, the possibility of passing agreements that allow the IACHR to cooperate.

For more information in Spanish: 

Gobierno de México y CIDH firman acuerdo para reinstalación del GIEI, a fin de seguir brindando asistencia técnica en el caso Ayotzinapa (comunicado completo, 7 de mayo de 2020)

Firman Segob y SRE acuerdo con CIDH para reinstalación del GIEI (La Jornada, 7 de mayo de 2020)

Firman acuerdo de reinstalación de GIEI en caso Ayotzinapa (Aristegui Noticias, 7 de mayo de 2020)

Formalizan reinstalación del GIEI en el caso Ayotzinapa (Regeneración, 8 de mayo de 2020)

Acuerdan México y CIDH reinstalar el GIEI para el caso Ayotzinapa (El Universal, 7 de mayo de 2020)

For more information from SIPAZ:

National/Guerrero: Agreement to Reintroduce Interdisciplinary Group of Independent Experts in Ayotzinapa Case. Number of Disappeared Increases in the Country (January 14, 2020)

 

Guerrero: Attorney General Will Investigate Ayotzinapa Case “Almost from Scratch”(September 25, 2019)

 

Guerrero: New Stage in Investigation of Ayotzinapa Case – Creation of Special Investigation Unit with Omar Gomez Trejo as Head (July 8, 2019)

 


Oaxaca: Tenth Anniversary of Murder of Defenders Bety Cariño and Jyri Jaakkola in Triqui Territory

May 2, 2020

bety10anos

April 27th marked the 10th anniversary of the murder of Bety Cariño Trujillo and Jyri Antero Jaakkola (Finland) when they participated in a humanitarian caravan that was headed to the Triqui community of San Juan Copala.

Due to the pandemic context, an in-person commemorative event could not be held. We opted for a network transmission of the documentary “Death in Mexico”, produced by Deutsche Welle, a German state television channel, an approach to the fight for justice of the two human rights defenders. After that, a discussion was also held with the participation of Omar Esparza and Eve Jaakkola, Jyri’s mother, among others. “Despite the time and the political agreements that keep the case in impunity, we continue to work to achieve justice,” said the organizers of the event.

For its part, the Mexican Network of People Affected by Mining (REMA), to which Bety Cariño belonged, issued a statement in which it emphasized: “Those cowardly murderers thought that you would soon be forgotten, that in a few months nobody would remember you, but they were wrong, because your sisters and brothers with the same yearning for justice that you championed, we continue here walking with you, honoring that strength, that anger, that spirit of change: We continue “sowing dreams to reap hopes.””

In a joint statement, the European Union (EU) delegation to Mexico and the embassies of Norway and Switzerland also criticized that the case continues with impunity and called on the authorities to ensure that there is justice for these crimes and generally to “Provide justice in all cases against defenders, as well as prosecute the intellectual and material authors responsible so that there are no areas of silence where activists do not dare to work.”

For more information in Spanish:

UE critica impunidad en asesinatos de los activistas Bety Cariño y Jyri Jaakkola (La Jornada, 28 de abril de 2020)

Demandan justicia por asesinato de ambientalistas (El Occidental, 28 de abril de 2020)

Mediante homenaje digital recordarán a Bety Cariño (NVI Noticias,  27 de abril de 2020)

Exigen justicia a diez años del asesinato de Bety Cariño (MVS Noticias, 27 de abril de 2020)

ENTRAÑABLE BETY CARIÑO A 10 AÑOS DE TU PARTIDA (REMA, 26 de abril de 2020)

For more information from SIPAZ:

Oaxaca: Ninth Anniversary of Murder of Bety Cariño y Jyri Jaakkola in San Juan Copala (May 11, 2019)

Oaxaca: Suspect in Murder of Human Rights Defenders in San Juan Copola in 2010 Arrested (January 31, 2019)

Oaxaca: MEPs Highlight Lack of Political Will Regarding Murder of Jyri Jaakkola and Bety Cariño (February 26, 2018)


Chiapas/National: “Denying the Existence of Torture in Mexico Encourages Impunity”, CSO

April 20, 2020

200416_contralatortura_pronunciamiento@Frayba

In a bulletin published on April 16th, the Collective Against Torture and Impunity (CCTI), the World Organization Against Torture (WOAT) and the Group of Litigants in Latin America said that the statements of President Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador (AMLO) last April 5th, affirming that in Mexico “we have eradicated torture” contradict “what was sustained by various instances of the United Nations Organization (UN) on their different visits to this country who affirm that torture in Mexico is widespread and systematic”, a perception they share.

As an example of this, between January 2019 and March 2020, the Fray Bartolome de Las Casas Center for Human Rights (Frayba) documented 18 cases of torture perpetrated in the current penal system in Chiapas.

“The practice of torture is rooted and propagated in Mexico. There is mistrust within the new penal system, specifically in the officials in charge of law enforcement for continuing to validate the acts of torture carried out by the police forces, which perpetuate this method as part of their practice of investigating crimes. This is due to the lack of education, training and awareness regarding the new judicial system, where we have verified the lack of technique to investigate, preserve evidence, guard evidence and take care of the chain of custody in the facts”, they maintained.

They also noted that “despite having a General Law to Prevent, Investigate and Punish Torture in Mexico, the Special Prosecutors for the Investigation of the Crime of Torture are unaware of it, which allows this violation of human rights to continue to be committed on a daily basis.”

They ended by urging “the President of the Republic not to use the public health crisis derived from the pandemic by COVID 19, to issue information that goes against the protection, respect and guarantee of human rights, since such circumstances contribute to the climate impunity and favors torture.”

For more information in Spanish:

Negar la existencia de la Tortura en México alienta la impunidad (OSC, 16 de abril de 2020)

AMLO da informe trimestral y plan económico para México por coronavirus (Milenio el 5 de abril de 2020)

Pestes, créditos y abrazos. Informe trimestral de AMLO en 23 frases clave (El Universal el 5 de abril de 2020)

Esto fue lo anunciado por AMLO para México en su informe trimestral (El Imparcial el 5 de abril de 2020)

For more information from SIPAZ:

National: Lopez Obrador Makes Fifth Trimster Report; Assures “We Will Prevail” (April 10, 2020)

National/International: “When Words Are Not Enough” – Amnesty International Report almost One Year after AMLO Takes Office (December 4, 2019)

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

National/International: CAT Issues Recommendations on Torture in Mexico (May 22, 2019)


National/International: Mexico, Fourth Most Dangerous Country for Human Rights Defenders (Frontline Defenders)

February 16, 2020

global_analysis_2019_cover_0

On February 12th, the Frontline Defenders (FLD) organization publicly presented its “Global Analysis 2019” report in Mexico City, in which it pointed out that Latin America is the most dangerous region in the world to defend human and environmental rights: in 2019, it recorded more than 200 of the 304 documented murders in 31 countries globally. It also reported that four of the five most dangerous countries for activism are part of the subcontinent (with 68% of cases). FLD explained that the five countries with the highest number of murders of defenders in 2019 were Colombia with 106, the Philippines – the only non-American country on the list – with 43, Honduras with 31, Mexico with 23 and also Brazil with 23.

Mexico is also the most dangerous country for environmental defenders: 75% of the 23 murders documented by FLD in the country were against nature defenders and against extractive or development megaprojects in which “there are powerful corporate interests and of public officials and possible profits at stake.” 20% of the murders were against women (internationally the figure was 13%). In addition, by 2020, “we have already documented at least three murders of defenders (two in Michoacan and one in Ciudad Juarez)”.

FDL regretted that impunity remains the norm. In the case of Mexican, in at least 11 cases investigations were initiated without results so far. Impunity is common even in cases identified as “emblematic”, not only with murdes but also in the “high level of criminalization of environmental defenders, who are exposed to physical aggressions, acts of legal intimidation and threats, in particular women, indigenous people and sexual diversity groups.”

Jesus Peña, deputy representative in Mexico of the UN High Commissioner for Human Rights, present at the event condemned the unfortunate fourth place and stressed that “the best form of protection is undoubtedly the fight against impunity in which many of the aggressions are.”

For more information in Spanish:

México, el cuarto país más peligroso en el mundo para ambientalistas y defensores, revela ONG (Sin Embargo, 13 de febrero de 2020)

Colocan a México como el 4° país más peligroso para defensores de DH (La Jornada, 12 de febrero de 2020)

Ambientalistas, 70 % de los activistas asesinadas en 2019 : ONG (El Universal, 12 de febrero de 2020)

Análisis global 2019 (Human Rights Defenders, enero de 2020)

For more information from SIPAZ:

National: Red TdT Publishes Human Rights Balance for 2019 (January 13, 2020)

Nacional: 28 activistas asesinados en 2019 por rechazar proyectos del gobierno, según organizaciones civiles.  (December 2, 2019)

National/International: “When Words Are Not Enough” – Amnesty International Report almost One Year after AMLO Takes Office (December 4, 2019)

National: Mexico Sixth Most Dangerous Country for Environmentalists According to Global Witness; 12 Activists Killed in 2019 (October 13, 2019)

National: 21 Environmental Defenders Murdered in 2018 (CEMDA) (April 1, 2019)