Chiapas: Believing People of Chenalhó pronounces itself in favor of the closure of cantinas in the municipality

June 30, 2015

Iglesia de Chenalhó (@Koman Ilel)

In a communique published on 23 June, Catholics from the Chenalhó parish who make up part of the Believing People pronounced themselves in favor of the closure of cantinas and alcohol dispensaries in their municipality. They stressed that “the consequences of the consumption of alcohol are disastrous, such as suicides, deaths, motor-vehicle accidents, and divorce.” There exist some 21 cantinas, three restaurants, and two grocery stores in the municipal seat.

The Catholics demanded that the agreement which previously had been organized by the 94 communities of the municipality be observed, as the owners of cantinas and alcohol dispensaries have not respected this. It must be recalled that on 13 June, an organized women’s group requested the authorities to produce a document that would demand the departure of those selling alcohol. In this way, “on 20 June, the judges went to see whether the alcohol-vendors respected the document, but they did not. Instead, they merely returned to selling.”

They claim as well that “if something bad happens, whether to the organized women, or to our priest or the believers of this parish, the immediately responsible parties will be the authorities of the Chenalhó municipality, the state government, and the federal government, and we will not remain silent, but rather we will denounce the situation before national and international civil society, and before Mexican and global human-rights defenders.”

For more information (in Spanish):

Comunicado completo: Pueblo Creyente denuncia complicidad de autoridades en venta desmedida de alcohol en Chenalhó (Pueblo Creyente de Chenalhó, 23 de junio de 2015)

Atender problemas de venta de alcohol (Cuarto Poder, 24 de junio de 2015)

For more information from SIPAZ (in English):

Chiapas: Believing People of El Bosque march for a halt to violence in their region (30 June 2015)

Chiapas: Pilgrimage in Simojovel to demand justice and truth amidst deaths of infants (9 June 2015)

Chiapas: Rise in threats against the priest and members of the Believing People in Simojovel (24 April 2015)


Chiapas: CFE cuts off 14 communities from Tila, provoking tensions

June 30, 2015

In a communique published on 21 June, the organization Peoples United for the Defense of Electricity (PUDEE) denounced that the Federal Electricity Commission (CFE) suspended service on 17 June to residents in 14 communities from the Tila municipality, northern zone of Chiapas. Some of the affected homes find themselves in a position of resistance to paying for electricity, due to high prices.

In light of these events, PUDEE has reported increased “tensions in the communities that struggle and resist to defend their rights” and that “amidst the situation and the rise in violence that could take place in the communities of the northern zone, we hold the three levels of government responsible.”

PUDEE indicated that “if it is this way that CFE will treat the communities in resistance, we will organize ourselves by means of the self-determination of our peoples. The way they are privatizing the electricity, we too will privatize our lands, and the CFE will have to pay us for the use of our lands. If this does not happen, they can take their light-posts and transformers. We will not allow them to plunder our land, which belonged to our parents and is for our children.”

For more information (in Spanish):

Comunicado completo del PUDEE (Denuncia Pública, 21 de junio de 2015)

CFE corta el servicio a comunidades ‘en resistencia de pagos’ en Chiapas (La Jornada, 24 de junio de 2015)

CFE suspende energía a 14 comunidades indígenas de Chiapas (El Financiero, 25 de junio de 2015)

For more information from SIPAZ (in English):

Chiapas: Communique from PUDEE regarding structural reforms (2 September 2014)

Chiapas: PUDEE denounces “climate of violence” generated by the CFE in the zone below Tila (15 April 2013)

Chiapas: PUDEE denounces harassment and electricity cut-off by CFE (24 March 2012)

Chiapas: PUDEE denounces harassment by the CFE (25 February 2011)


Chiapas: CNDH releases recommendation to Chiapas state government for unjust treatment

June 30, 2015

On 22 June, the National Commission on Human Rights (CNDH) released a recommendation to the governor of Chiapas, Manuel Velasco Coello, and to the Arriaga City Hall, regarding human-rights violations committed against two activists in August 2013. It observed that, in this case, municipal public servants and members of the State Attorney General’s Office (PGJE) violated the personal liberty, the right to self-defense, the right to juridical security, legality, and dignified treatment. For this reason, the CNDH had requested compensation for the damages incurred, in addition to recommending the organization of training courses to protect human-rights defenders, and requesting collaboration with the CNDH itself to present and follow-up with the denunciations of these acts committed by public servants with the proper authorities.

On 2 August 2013, the victims were on their way to the Arriaga City Hall in Chiapas, accompanying a group of residents of the Los Laureles neighborhood to carry out a dialogue with the authorities regarding the problems that affected this community. They denounced having been subjected to kidnapping, being held incomunicado, and being subjected to unjust treatment on the part of municipal and state authorities, after they led this protest-action.

For more information (in Spanish):

CNDH emite recomendación al gobierno de Chiapas por agresión a activistas(Proceso, 22 de junio de 2015)

Emite CNDH recomendación al gobierno de Chiapas por violación a derechos humanos (Radio Fórmula, 22 de junio de 2015)

La CNDH emite una recomendación al gobierno de Chiapas por agravio de activistas (Emeequis, 22 de junio de 2015)


Chiapas: Denunciation of paramilitary attack on the El Rosario community, pertaining to the La Garrucha caracol

June 30, 2015

DSC_1112

In a communique from 25 June, Subcomandante Insurgente Moisés of the Zapatista Army of National Liberation (EZLN) made known the facts of a new attack on Zapatistas on recuperated lands in the El Rosario community, which belongs to the autonomous municipality of San Manuel. The Subcomandante also includes the denunciation made by the La Garrucha Good-Government Council (JBG) regarding the events.

The “Path to the Future” JBG explains that 28 “paramilitaries” from the Chiquinibal neighborhood of the Pojkol ejido arrived on 24 June to El Rosario, 8 of them openly carrying firearms. According to the JBG, in this community there live 21 “paramilitaries” who occupy lands recovered by the EZLN in 1994. According to the JGB, there was a meeting between these paramilitaries with an engineer and Guadalupe Flores, the owner of the lands in question before the 1994 uprising. The JBG claims that this group carried out measurements of the lands, supposedly to plan the subsequent construction of a church and homes. It adds that 10 gunshots were fired behind the home of a Zapatista support-base (BAEZLN) to intimidate the population, and that the aggressors entered two other homes and destroyed yet another, robbing the belongings of its inhabitants: animals, construction materials, tools, food, and cash. The JBG concludes that the engineer and the landowner are advisors to the paramilitary group.

It should be recalled that the La Garrucha JBG had in August 2014 denounced actions taken by this same group, including the killing of a stud bull, the destruction of homes and a collective store, robbery, the defoliation with pesticides of common grazing lands, shooting of live ammunition, and the writing of “Pojkol territory” on burned-out homes. In May 2015, the JBG denounced that one of them shot at a BAEZLN girl.

The JBG affirms that these events are a provocation which form part of the government’s counter-insurgent strategy. “We say clearly that we will not remain with our arms crossed while our comrades are attacked by any of the means that the bad government uses against us. We have said clearly that we will defend our lands, because on them were we born, from them we live, and on them we will die, regardless of the costs.”

The JBG holds the federal, state, and municipal governments responsible for any acts that might follow, and it calls on the public to remain attentive.

For more information (in Spanish):

Nuevo ataque de paramilitares. Caracol Resistencia Hacia un Nuevo Amanecer. La Garrucha. (Enlace Zapatista, 25 de junio de 2015)

Denuncia EZLN un ataque de paramilitares a indígenas de Ocosingo (La Jornada, 26 de junio de 2015)

For more information from SIPAZ (in English):

Chiapas: La Garrucha Good-Government Council (JBG) denounces two paramilitary attacks (17 May 2015)

Chiapas: Update regarding forced displacement of EZLN support bases belonging to the La Garrucha caracol (2 September 2014)

Chiapas: Forced displacement of EZLN support-bases belonging to La Garrucha caracol (29 August 2014)


Oaxaca: More than 500 cases of torture and 26 executions: Truth Commission

June 29, 2015

(@ADN Sureste)

(@ADN Sureste)

On the ninth anniversary of the attempt to displace the teachers’ sit-in at the zócalo in Oaxaca de Juárez in 2006, on 14 June there was held a public session at the Oaxaca Truth Commission (CVO). 14 witnesses presented testimony, while members of the CVO, including its president Alejandro Solalinde, as well as the journalist Carmen Aristegui and the Mexican representative of the UN High Commissioner for Human Rights, Javier Hernández Valencia, were also present.

The CVO is an autonomous organization that seeks to clarify the repressive historical events that took place in Oaxaca between 14 June 2006 and 30 May 2007, the time period covering the displacement of the teachers from Section 22 of the National Coordination of Educational Workers (CNTE) from the sit-in they had undertaken to demand better working and educational conditions. This police operation was ordered by the then governor, Ulises Ruiz Ortiz, and gave rise to the creation of the Popular Assembly of the Peoples of Oaxaca (APPO), a social movement that opposed the PRI-led government.

According to an advance copy of the CVO’s report, there were at least 500 cases of torture and 26 executions of social activists and those connected to the struggle. The public session gave voice to the testimony of women who lost their husbands, families that continue to seek out their disappeared, and political prisoners. According to Solalinde, the gravity of the acts is reflected well in the various testimonies that were presented, even if many other victims did not share their experiences out of fear. The public audience, which Javier Hernández Valencia understood as “a first step toward justice,” affirmed words such as those of Carmen Aristegui: “What should happen in the near future must incorporate the truth and memory, but above all justice, as Oaxacan society has sought out now for nearly a decade.” The CVO will put together a final report, to be presented before the judiciary in March 2016. The aim is to pressure authorities to put an end to the impunity of the acts, which represent crimes against humanity, in the view of Solalinde and his lawyer and assessor, Cuauhtémoc Ruiz.

On the same day of the public audience, a march organized by the CNTE took place, with the participation of 10,000 people. Protestors sought to commemorate the attempted displacement of 2006 and repeated their call for justice, the cancellation of articles 3 and 73 of the Constitution, and the cancellation of the educational reforms. They also protested in favor of boycotting the assessment exams for teachers that have been announced by the Secretary for Public Education (SEP).

For more information (in Spanish):

Hubo 500 casos de tortura y 26 ejecuciones en Oaxaca: Comisión de la Verdad (La Jornada, 12 de junio de 2015)

Ciudadanos de Oaxaca exigen justicia por el desalojo policial de 2006(CNN México, 14 de junio de 2015)

Confirman 26 ejecuciones y 500 torturados durante movimiento magisterial en Oaxaca (La Jornada, 15 de junio de 2015)

Sesión Pública de Comisión de la Verdad de Oaxaca, ejercicio inédito e importante: Aristegui (Educa, 15 de junio de 2015)

CNTE rememoró intento de desalojo del zócalo en el 2006 (e-Consulta, 14 de junio de 2015)

Comisión de la Verdad de Oaxaca (16 de junio de 2015)

For more information from SIPAZ (in English):

Oaxaca: Commemoration of seventh annivesary of APPO (24 June 2013)

Oaxaca: Sixth anniversary of the beginning of the 2006 social conflict (20 June 2012)

Oaxaca: Presumed killer of Brad Will is detained (5 June 2012)


Guerrero/National: Nestora Salgado, newly accused

June 29, 2015

(@Revolución tres punto cero)

(@Revolución tres punto cero)

Nestora Salgado García, the ex-commander from the Communal Police (PC) of Olinalá, has been told by the Guerrero State Attorney General that she now faces three additional charges, including kidnapping, robbery, and homicide. Her attorney, Sandino Rivero, reported that her new accusers are unknown, and that the identity of the presumed murder victims is also unknown. The charges are still informal, but they will soon be applied against her. Furthermore, he adds that these three new charges were not detailed in her original arrest on 21 August 2013, nearly two years ago. According to CIMAC News, the defense counsel’s analysis is that the State Attorney “had been keeping” these other charges, thus indicating that its office would not desist, despite the calls made by the Guerrero State Governor, Rogelio Ortega.

The PC ex-commander has been imprisoned on three charges of kidnapping of people who were being re-educated at the Justice House in El Paraíso. She is presently being held in the Center for Social Readaptation in Tepepan, where she had been transferred after a hunger-strike that lasted 31 days, one she undertook to demand her transfer and that of her PC comrades who are also imprisoned. Until 29 May, she had been held in the high-security prison in Tepic, Nayarit, 1,100 kilometers from her land of origin.

According to the “Sin Embargo” media, beyond having raised consciousness about irregularities in the health center and promoting unions in Olinalá to re-educational campaigns, Salgado revealed that, before her arrest, she had shown several officials videos evidencing the rapes of children. These authorities then went to an Admiral of the Navy, a General from the Secretary for National Defense (SEDENA), and the then-governor, Ángel Aguirre Rivero, who then committed himself to referring the matter to the Federal Attorney General (PGR), but in the end nothing was investigated. Nestora holds that she surely disturbed powerful interests with her denunciations of these cases of the rapes of children, with this being the actual reason she has been imprisoned.

In an interview with Proceso, she adds that “they are hurt that I have told them that the system is corrupt; they are trying to bury my voice, which was heard.” She assures that the system has failed everyone. “If I am released, as I hope I will (it must be this way), or if I must give my life for this struggle, I will do it. I will not be silent; I am not afraid. I am someone who believes in the systematic re-education of the people (of the CRAC), and I believe we can indeed change many things—not just in Guerrero, but throughout the country.”

For more information (in Spanish):

La delincuencia nos respetó, el que quiso destruirnos fue el gobierno”: Nestora Salgado (Proceso, 22 de junio de 2015)

Ahora Fiscalía de Guerrero acusa a Nestora Salgado de homicidio(Cimac Noticias, 19 de junio de 2015)

Nestora revela que mostró a jefes militares y a Aguirre videos de abuso a menores (Sin Embargo, 22 de junio de 2015)

A punto de ser liberada, la ex comandanta Nestora Salgado acusada de secuestro, robo y homicido, nuevamente (Revolución tres punto cero, 22 de junio de 2015)

For more information from SIPAZ (in English):

Guerrero/National: Nestora Salgado is transferred to a Mexico City prison (10 June 2015)

Guerrero: Still on hunger strike, Nestora Salgado continues to hope for transfer as her health declines (9 June 2015)

Guerrero: political prisoner Nestora Salgado, coordinator of the Communal Police of Olinalá, begins hunger strike (16 May 2015)

Guerrero: IACHR calls on Mexican government to guarantee medical attention to Nestora Salgado (8 February 2015)


Chiapas: Minerva, half of her life disappeared, with no justice

June 29, 2015

Minerva Guadalupe Pérez Torres

Minerva Guadalupe Pérez Torres

On 20 June 2015, Minerva Guadalupe Pérez Torres would have had her thirty-eighth birthday. That same day in 1996, she was “headed to the Masojá Shucjá community, Tila municipality, Chiapas, to visit her ill father. On her route, in the Miguel Alemán community, she was intercepted by members of the ‘Development, Peace, and Justice’ paramilitary group, who kidnapped her, tortured her sexually and otherwise for three days, and then forcibly disappeared her. Nearly two decades after, her whereabouts are entirely unknown,” indicates the Fray Bartolomé de Las Casas Center for Human Rights (CDHFBLC). Beyond this, a public bulletin reported that the relatives of Minerva and other forcibly disappeared and extrajudicially executed persons are receiving notes “to confront their aggressors, the paramilitary leaders of Development, Peace, and Justice: Diego Vázquez Pérez, Sabelino Torres Martínez, Marcos Albino, and Samuel Sánchez, who are ordered to appear before a judge or face a fine of $2,048 [Mexican pesos] if they fail to comply.”

This aforementioned group was trained and protected by the State Police and the Mexican Army in the 1990s as a counter-insurgency weapon, as demonstrated in the Chiapas Campaign Plan 94. The CDHFBLC documented that Development, Peace, and Justice carried out 85 executions, 37 forcible disappearances, and forcibly displaced more than 4,500 people.

For more information (in Spanish):

Minerva Guadalupe: Verdad y Justicia hasta encontrarte (CDHFBLC, 23 de junio de 2015)

La indígena chiapaneca Minerva Guadalupe Pérez, lleva desaparecida más de la mitad de su vida (Desinformémonos, 23 de junio de 2015)

Desaparición forzada en Chiapas, bajo una loza de impunidad (Centro Prodh, 23 de junio de 2015)

For more information from SIPAZ (in English):

Chiapas: 18 years since the disappearance of Minerva Pérez, her case remains unpunished (25 June 2014)

Chiapas: 17 years after the forced disappearance of Minerva Guadalupe Pérez Torres, her case is taken up at the IACHR (25 June 2013)

Chiapas: 16 years of impunity in the case of the forced disappearance of Minerva Guadalupe Pérez Torres (25 June 2012)

Chiapas: Masojá Shucjá, commemoration of the victims of the victims of the conflict of ’95 and ’96 (7 October 2011)


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