National: AMLO – We Won’t Build Dams at El Paso de la Reina, Boca del Cerro or La Parota

January 22, 2020

5C400AB2-74BB-49C3-A246-E75915CDEE73Photo @ HydroReview

On January 20th, having been questioned in his morning press conference about a complaint of burglary and harassment in recent days by elements of the Navy against Marco Antonio Suastegui, one of the leaders of the opposition to La Parota dam in Guerrero, the president Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador rejected that it is among his plans to reactivate the La Parota project.

“No work can be done against the will of the people. La Parota is opposed and that dam is not going to be built. As we are not going to build other dams, I would tell you that we are not going to build the Paso de la Reina dam in Oaxaca and the Boca del Cerro dam in the Usumacinta in Chiapas. The only one that we are going to finish because its expansion has already begun, is that of Chicoasen (…) no new dam will be started, but we will seek to modernize the existing ones. ”

Regarding the issue, the senator of On January 20, after being questioned in his morning conference about a complaint of raid and harassment in recent days by elements of the Navy to Marco Antonio Suastegui, one of the leaders of the opposition to La Parota dam in Guerrero, the president Andrés Manuel López Obrador rejected that it is among his plans to reactivate the La Parota project.

“No work can be done against the will of the people. La Parota is opposed and that dam is not going to be built. As we are not going to build other dams, I would tell you that we are not going to build the Paso de la Reina dam in Oaxaca and the Boca del Cerro dam in the Usumacinta in Chiapas. The only one that we are going to finish because its expansion has already begun, is that of Chicoasén (…) said that no new dam will be started, but it will seek to modernize the existing ones”, the president said.

Regarding the issue, the MORENA senator, Ricardo Monreal, announced on the same day that he decided not to present an initiative to reform the Constitution and the Federal Injunction Law “to prevent the protection of public works that benefit the community” . According to Proceso magazine, “the MORENA member considers that the current federal government has promoted important projects from the beginning, which have been stopped by suspensions granted through injunctions, causing damage to economic and social progress.”

Through his Twitter account, the senator announced that “he had prepared initiatives to reform the Injunction Law, which were reviewed in the past by other means; After talking with groups and specialists, I decided not to present them, to look for a consensus project on the subject. You must listen and accept changes.” 

For more information in Spanish:

Morena en el Senado va por reforma para evitar que amparos frenen proyectos de AMLO (El Proceso, 19 de enero de 2020)

Monreal desiste de sus reformas al amparo para blindar los proyectos de AMLO (Expansión Política, 20 de enero de 2020)

López Obrador descarta retomar proyecto de presa La Parota, en Guerrero (El Proceso, 20 de enero de 2020)

For more information from SIPAZ:

Guerrero: Vocero del CECOP presenta queja contra policías estatales que pretendían detenerlo (December 17, 2019)

Chiapas: “La Voz del Pueblo” informa que el Ayuntamiento de Huehuetán no otorga ningún tipo de autorización a las empresas para la construcción de hidroeléctricas en el municipio (July 16, 2019)

Nacional/Internacional: “Gobierno debe frenar abusos de empresas públicas y privadas”: Grupo Focal de la Sociedad Civil sobre Empresas y DDHH (July 5, 2019)

Guerrero: 16 CRAC PC and CECOP Prisoners Released (June 17, 2019)

Celebrará Dia Internacional de Acción Contra las Presas y a Favor de los Ríos, el Agua y la Vida, Y otras formas de resistencia (March 12, 2019)


Chiapas/National: Forum in Defense of Territory and Mother Earth Held in New Zapatista Caracol Jacinto Canek

January 13, 2020

35E69EA4-3CF9-46B0-9106-0DB17A7BCB79@Radio Pozol

On December 21st and 22nd, the Forum in Defense of Territory and Mother Earth was held in the new Jacinto Canek caracol, at the Cideci/Unitierra facilities in San Cristobal de Las Casas. Convened by the National Indigenous Congress (CNI), the Indigenous Government Council (CIG) and the Zapatista Army of National Liberation (EZLN), it was attended by more than 900 people from 25 Mexican states and 24 countries.

The welcome was given by the former candidate for the presidency and spokesperson of the CIG, María de Jesus Patricio Martinez, Marichuy. During the event, presentations and testimonies were made by peoples and organizations in Mexico, as well as of indigenous peoples of Colombia, the Mapuche people of Chile and Kurdish women, with an emphasis on the impacts that megaprojects have on the territory and Mother Earth. We also heard stories of struggle and resistance to continue defending life through organization, collectivity, autonomy, legal action, direct action or the strengthening of one’s own cultures.

It is also worth mentioning the participation of 20 men and women from the Zapatista support bases that explained how for more than 20 years they have made progress in consolidating their own forms of government without omitting the difficulties they have encountered along the way. “The ‘Fourth Annihilation’ will destroy everyone, there will be a lot of sadness, but it gives us courage and anger to see how they continue to deceive our brothers, the situation that comes with the new government that is dispossession. Therefore, given this, we can only resist and face the war of the Fourth Annihilation,” said one of the Zapatista delegates. He also said that “to fight or organize you do not need to be a Zapatista, the important thing is to fight and face the bad system, let’s carry out a great task and take you to work with other colleagues, that is the only way to defend what we have.”

At the end of the event, some agreements were made among which is the convening of Days in Defense of the Territory and Mother Earth “Samir Somos Todxs”, for February 20th, 21st and 22nd, 2020.

The next day, the Jacinto Canek caracol was formally inaugurated, in the facilities of the Cideci/Unitierra, in San Cristobal de Las Casas, from where the Good Government Council will work as “Flower of our word, light of our peoples that reflects for all”.

For more information in Spanish:

Foro en Defensa del Territorio y la Madre Tierra [audios y fotos] (Radio zapatista, 24 de diciembre de 2019)

Indígenas acuerdan conformar modelo económico paralelo al capitalista (Aristegui Noticias, 23 de diciembre de 2019)

Bases del EZLN advierten que seguirán resistiendo la “Cuarta Aniquilación” (Proceso, 23 de diciembre de 2019)

EZLN: al capitalismo no le importa destruirnos; no lo permitamos (La Jornada, 22 de diciembre de 2019)

PROGRAMA DEL FORO EN DEFENSA DEL TERRITORIO Y LA MADRE TIERRA (Enlace zapatista, 20 de diciembre de 2019)

For more information from SIPAZ:

Chiapas/Nacional: se lleva a cabo 4ª Asamblea del CNI-CIG en San Cristóbal de Las Casas (21 de diciembre de 2019)

Chiapas: EZLN – Una Ballena en las montañas del sureste mexicano: Segundo Festival de Ciné zapatista (18 de diciembre de 2019)

Chiapas/Nacional : CNI- CIG “vivimos la guerra del capital contra los pueblos del mundo”, convocatoria a la cuarta Asamblea Nacional (8 de noviembre de 2019)

Chiapas/Nacional/Internacional: EZLN invita a participar en el “Combo por la Vida: Diciembre de Resistencia y Rebeldía” (7 de noviembre de 2019)


Chiapas/National: Fourth Assembly of CNI-CIG Held in San Cristobal de Las Casas

January 13, 2020

A8F8C6F2-F4C0-4FFB-99FE-61DBB4FA5514@Radio zapatista

On December 18th and 19th, the Fourth National Assembly of the National Indigenous Congress (CNI) and the Indigenous Government Council (CIG) was held at the Zapatista Caracol Jacinto Canek, at CIDECI-UNITIERRA, in San Cristobal de las Casas, with the participation of indigenous peoples from 24 Mexican states as well as guests from Guatemala, Ecuador, El Salvador and the United States. This was to “see and understand the neoliberal war that is covered with lies pretending to govern, when they put the country in the hands of large capital, which hinders the collective conscience of the peoples and starts their machinery of dispossession.”

In a joint pronouncement, they denounced that “the bad federal government simulates consulting the indigenous peoples” to “impose the Maya train”, the Morelos Integral Project (PIM) and “the megaprojects of death that reconfigure our country to make it available to the multinational capital, mainly imposing the terrorist power of the United States.”

They said that “to advance in their war, the bad government bets on the dismantling of community fabrics, by promoting internal conflicts that mark communities wit violence, between those who defend life and those who decided to put a price on it, even at the cost of selling the future generations for the millionaire benefit of a few corrupt, served by armed groups of organized crime.”

They affirmed that “our peoples, nations and tribes will continue to care for and defend the seeds of resistance and rebellion in the midst of death. Building a path that will last in the midst of darkness; we, we will be there to heal our mother earth, together with the peoples of the world.”

For more information in Spanish:

Pronunciamiento conjunto de la Cuarta Asamblea Nacional del CNI-CIG y EZLN (CNI, 19 de diciembre de 2019)

EZLN acusa al gobierno de imponer el Tren Maya (La Jornada, 20 de diciembre de 2019)

Fue una consulta simulada para imponer el Tren Maya: EZLN-CNI-CIG (Proceso, 20 de diciembre de 2019)

Consulta fue simulación para imponer el Tren Maya (El Universal, 20 de diciembre de 2019)

For more information from SIPAZ:

Chiapas/Nacional : CNI- CIG “vivimos la guerra del capital contra los pueblos del mundo”, convocatoria a la cuarta Asamblea Nacional (8 de noviembre de 2019)

Chiapas/Nacional/Internacional: EZLN invita a participar en el “Combo por la Vida: Diciembre de Resistencia y Rebeldía” (7 de noviembre de 2019)

Nacional/Internacional: movilización dislocada del CNI en el marco de la Jornada Global de lucha En defensa de la Vida y de Nuestros Territorios – “SAMIR FLORES VIVE” (16 de octubre de 2019)

Nacional: CNI invita a Jornada Global de Lucha “SAMIR FLORES VIVE” el 12 de octubre de 2019 (24 de septiembre de 2019)

Oaxaca : CNI realiza Asamblea Nacional “El Istmo es nuestro” en Juchitán (9 de septiembre de 2019)


National/International: Consultation on Maya Train did not Meet International Standards

January 4, 2020

7727E51E-85FA-4B7C-A346-EF6F1BE0557F@Aristegui Noticias

In a statement published on December 19th, the Office in Mexico of the United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights (UNHCHR) said that the indigenous consultation process on the “Maya Train Development Project”, “has not complied with all international standards in the field.”

It reported that it participated as an observer in this process and attended four of the 15 regional information assemblies and eight of the 15 regional consultative assemblies in Chiapas, Campeche, Yucatan, Tabasco and Quintana Roo.

“While the Office recognizes the decision of the Government of Mexico to make efforts to respect, protect and guarantee the rights of indigenous peoples, including their right to consultation and consent for the aforementioned project and welcomes the participation of multiple governmental entities in the process, it observed that the call, the protocol and the information presented only referred to the possible benefits of the project and not to the negative impacts that it could cause,” says the statement regarding the limitations of the informed nature of the process.

In other concerns, the UNHCHR noted that although “during the briefings and in the consultative stage, some authorities stated that the guarantee of various economic, social and cultural rights was not conditional on the acceptance of the project”, “as a consequence of the way in which the project was presented and the sessions were developed, the people of the communities expressed their agreement with the project as a means to receive attention to basic needs such as water, health, education, work, housing, healthy environment and culture, a logic that affects the free nature of the query.”

The UN DH also expressed concern about the cultural adequacy of the process, when the methodology of the process was not built and agreed with the communities involved. “This implied that the definition of whom to consult, where to do it and at what time it was established unilaterally by the authorities,” it said.

It deplored the low participation and representation of indigenous women in the process and that “the majority of those who participated were municipal and ejidal authorities, leaving out other groups and people who are part of the communities.”

It also stressed that the purpose of the information and consultative assemblies was to “establish agreements with the communities regarding their participation in the implementation and distribution of benefits, which could imply that the project will be done regardless of the outcome of the consultation.”

For more information in Spanish:

Consulta por Tren Maya no cumple estándares internacionales: ONU (La Jornada, 19 de diciembre de 2019)

Consulta sobre el Tren Maya incumple estándares internacionales: ONU-DH (Proceso, 19 de diciembre de 2019)

Rechaza ONU consulta ciudadana del Tren Maya (El Universal, 19 de diciembre de 2019)

ONU-DH emite observaciones sobre consulta de Tren Maya (Excelsior, 19 de diciembre de 2019)

For more information from SIPAZ:

Nacional: los participantes de la Consulta Indígena aceptaron el proyecto del Tren Maya, autoridades; sigue sin respetarse convenio 169 de la OIT, OSC(17 de diciembre de 2019)

Nacional: Organizaciones civiles, indígenas, y académicos se pronuncian en contra de la consulta por proyecto del Tren Maya. 9 de diciembre de 2019.

Nacional: Inicia proceso de licitación del Tren maya sin consulta previa a pueblos indígenas 4 de mayo de 2019

México: Consulta sobre el Tren Maya y 9 otros proyectos “prioritarios” del próximo gobierno 27 de noviembre de 2018

Nacional: AMLO anuncia consulta para la construcción por el tren maya 10 de noviembre de 2018


National: Indigenous Consultation Participants Accept Maya Train Project; Convention 169 of ILO not Respected

January 4, 2020

0806B68D-1F27-442B-8385-92C27FAB7D16@Cuartoscuro

On December 15th, the Indigenous Consultation on the Maya Train ended and according to the authorities the participants in it approved the megaproject “by consensus and without opinion against”.

The Ministry of the Interior (SEGOB) reported that 93,000 participants of the consultation voted in favor of the Mayan Train, while 7,500 participants voted against it. 268 tables were installed in the five states through which the Train will pass: Yucatan, Quintana Roo, Campeche, Tabasco and Chiapas. According Proceso magazine, the people who went to the polls only represent 2.6% of the electoral register of the 84 municipalities where the consultation was carried out.

At a press conference, AMLO noted that 30 assemblies were held in November and December with indigenous communities. He said that “in a dialogue with the government of Mexico, [the participants of the consultation] also agreed that their proposals and needs be incorporated and addressed in this project that aims to trigger the sustainable development of the Yucatan Peninsula.”

The consultation took place between November 15th and December 15th. That was approximately one year after a first consultation on the same project, which was criticized for not complying with Convention 169 of the International Labor Organization (ILO), an international agreement ratified by the Mexican government, which among other elements, raises what an indigenous consultation should consist of.

The second consultation has also been criticized by several indigenous and civil organizations, also for not complying with Convention 169, specifically for not being free, informed, or prior. A document that was circulated in some of the spaces of the consultation, and signed by participants stated that [the consultation is] “violating the Previous principle and also violating the principle of Good Faith because it simulates that it is an ‘indigenous consultation’… ” The announcement was published less than a week in advance to initiate the so-called consultation in its informative phase, cutting off the right to information on environmental, biocultural, economic, social impacts, the cultural heritage of the inhabitants, communities and indigenous peoples in the area of ​​involvement ”. Instead, it has been pointed out that the proposals prepared by the Fonatur, the National Institute of Indigenous Peoples (INPI) and the SEGOB for consultation only mentioned the benefits of the project promising that “the construction of roads and urban works would generate more 400 thousand jobs – directly and indirectly – that the project will take care of the environment and the historical heritage of the region, and that will lead to a “balanced development”.

They also promised that local passengers will pay fares of “almost half than tourists”, without specifying the amount, and that it would generate 157 million pesos a day in 2023, the year in which its implementation is planned.”

For more information in Spanish:

Comunidades indigenas aceptan construcción del Tren Maya, dice gobierno federal El Universal, 14 de diciembre de 2019.

La democrática imposición del Tren Maya (Proceso, 14 de diciembre de 2019)

Abre consulta sobre el Tren Maya en cinco estados; tiene respaldo de siete asambleas regionales Animal Politico, 15 de diciembre de 2019.

Hubo consenso unánime por el Tren Maya: INPI Excelsior, 16 de diciembre de 2019.

La “exitosa” consulta del Tren Maya en la que votó el 2.86% del padrón electoral de la zona (Proceso, 16 de diciembre de 2019)

75% de las comunidades indígenas participaron en consulta para Tren Maya: INPI (Aristegui Noticias, 16 de diciembre de 2019)

Solo se consultó sobre una parte del tren Maya: activistas; gobierno promete más consultas (Animal Político, 17 de diciembre de 2019)

For more information from SIPAZ:

Nacional: Organizaciones civiles, indígenas, y académicos se pronuncian en contra de la consulta por proyecto del Tren Maya. 9 de diciembre de 2019.

Nacional: Inicia proceso de licitación del Tren maya sin consulta previa a pueblos indígenas 4 de mayo de 2019

México: Consulta sobre el Tren Maya y 9 otros proyectos “prioritarios” del próximo gobierno 27 de noviembre de 2018

Nacional: AMLO anuncia consulta para la construcción por el tren maya 10 de noviembre de 2018


International/National/Chiapas: Eighth Anniversary of Banavil Displaced, Seeking International Monitoring of Problem of Internal Forced Displacement

December 5, 2019

banavilVictims of internal forced displacement @SIPAZ

Eight years after their forced internal displacement (FID) and the forced disappearance of Alonso Lopez Luna, a Tseltal family from the Banavil community, Tenejapa, continues to seek solutions to their demands.

It is important to remember that the main demands are in line with Recommendation CEDH / VGEAAI / 003/2017 of the State Commission of Human Rights of the State of Chiapas. This recommendation was approved on April 24th, 2017 by the Secretary General of the State of Chiapas.

The anniversary of the forced displacement of the family is commemorated a few days after the Joint Service of Characterization of Displaced Population (JSCDP) made an exploratory visit to Mexico (including a special visit to Chiapas), with the objective of “strengthening the technical capacities of the players that affect the attention of internal forced displacement; as well as contributing to quantitative and qualitative research work on the phenomenon in the country, in addition to establishing bases for a long-term strategy and joint work on prevention and care policies.” They concluded their visit by presenting recommendations to the Mexican State.

In addition, on November 22nd, organizations, victims of forced internal displacement, members of the academic sector, human rights defenders and journalists requested through a letter addressed to the Secretary of Foreign Affairs, Marcelo Ebrard Casaubon, “which is included in the agenda for special procedures visits next year 2020, the visit of the United Nations Special Rapporteur on the human rights of internally displaced persons, who has requested a visit to Mexico since 2015.”

For more information in Spanish:

Solicitud de visita a México de la Relatora Especial sobre los derechos humanos de los desplazados internos en carácter prioritario (CMDPDH, 22 de noviembre de 2019)

Participa CEAVE en mesa de trabajo para el Desplazamiento Forzado Interno (Fiscalia General del Estado de Chihuahua, 2 de diciembre de 2019)

Recomendación: CEDH/ 03/2017-R. (CEDH)

For more information from SIPAZ:

Chiapas: A 7 años de los hechos violentos que suscitaron el desplazamiento forzado de familias de Banavil (7 de diciembre de 2018)

Chiapas: displaced families from Banavil return to their home to celebrate the Day of the Dead (November 3, 2018)

Chiapas: Banavil Displaced Families Remember the Death of Antonia Lopez Luna (March 5, 2017)

Chiapas: Desplazados de Banavil siguen exigiendo justicia tras 5 años de desplazamiento forzado (2 de diciembre de 2016)

Chiapas: Banavil Displaced Families Announce Provisional Return to their Community for Day of the Dead. (November 2, 2016)


Chiapas: MODEVITE Receives Recognition for Environmental Defense in Chiapas

December 4, 2019

MODEVITE@Proceso

On November 27th, the tenth anniversary of the assassination of Chiapas environmentalist Mariano Abarca Roblero, who defended the rights of nature in the municipality of Chicomuselo from the year 2007 when he saw the socio-environmental effects of the Canadian mining company BlackFire that extracts the mineral from Barita, was remembered in that same municipality. After several threats by company workers he was killed. Since then, his family has carried out a long process with the support of various organizations demanding justice and punishment for the culprits.

In commemoration of his murder, relatives of the environmentalist as well as 32 national and international organizations convened the “Mariano Abarca” Environmental Defense Forum in Chiapas, which was held on November 27th, 2019 at the Sala de Bellas Artes in San Cristobal de Laa Casas.

In the framework of this event, the “Mariano Abarca Award”, the first recognition of environmental defense in Chiapas, was also given to the indigenous organization Movement in Defense of Life and Territory (MODEVITE in its Spanish acronym) that is present in 11 municipalities of the state populated by Tseltales, Tsotsiles and Ch’oles from the area of ​​Los Altos and La Selva and which is also part of the Believing People of the Diocese of San Cristobal de Las Casas. The prize that was awarded must recognize “year after year the community, collective or organization of the State of Chiapas, Mexico, that with their struggle for the defense of the rights of nature they defend their peoples, and they defend us all, dignify life, make us not lose hope that Other Worlds are possible” as indicated in the blog dedicated to the “Justice for Mariano Abarca” campaign.

Gustavo Castro of the Other Worlds organization stressed that “the first recognition of the environmental defense in Chiapas 2019 granted to MODEVITE means that we see it, accompany it, make it visible and thank you for your struggle for the good of all peoples.”

The forum was also an important occasion to share experiences of various groups and organizations in defense of land and territory. In the first part, the Movement for the Defense of Life and the Territory (MODEVITE), the Popular Front for the Defense of Soconusco “June 20” (FPDS in its Spanish acronym), Somos La Maya, Zoques in Defense of Life and the Territory (Zodevite), a representative of the Pascacio Gamboa Community, Ixtacomitán and the Regional Council of Agricultural Authorities in Defense of the Territory (CRAADT), an active organization in the Mountains and Costa Chica area of ​​the state of Guerrero participated.

In addition, specialists and panelists from different human rights organizations and institutions were invited. Norma Gonzalez Benitez of Amnesty International attended with an analysis on the criminalization of human rights defenders and the environment in Mexico, Edgar Cortes of the Mexican Institute of Human Rights and Democracy (IMDHD in its Spanish acronym) who spoke on the Mechanism for the Protection of Defenders of Human Rights and Journalists and finally the Swedish Movement for Reconciliation (SweFOR) shared their experiences on the accompaniment work of human rights and environmental defenders and their situation in Chiapas.

For more information in Spanish:

MODEVITE recibirá Reconocimiento a la Defensa Ambiental “Mariano Abarca” (Chiapas Paralelo el 20 de noviembre de 2019)

Exigen justicia a 10 años del asesinato del activista Mariano Abarca; Modevite obtiene premio con su nombre (Proceso el 27 de noviembre de 2019)

PREMIO A LA DEFENSA AMBIENTAL (Justicia para Mariano Abarca el 27 de noviembre de 2019)

Entregarán el primer “Premio Mariano Abarca” al MODEVITE (Educa el 27 de noviembre de 2019)

PRIMER RECONOCIMIENTO A LA DEFENSA AMBIENTAL EN CHIAPAS 2019 “MARIANO ABARCA” (Otros Mundos el 19 de noviembre de 2019)

La minera canadiense Blackfire en Chiapas contra defensores de los territorios y de la vida (REMA el 18 de octubre de 2017)

 

For more information from SIPAZ:

Chiapas: Megaperegrinación del Movimiento en Defensa de La Vida y del Territorio (MODEVITE) en Tuxtla Gutiérrez (21 de agosto de 2019)

Chiapas : Creciente polarización en Chilón ante posible cambio de modo de elección, del sistema oficial al por usos y costumbres. (15 de agosto de 2019)

Chiapas: Expresiones de solidaridad y preocupación ante los hostigamientos a integrantes del CEDIAC y de la Misión Jesuita de Bachajón (20 de junio de 2019)

Chiapas: Modevite ratifica su rechazo a la construcción de la super carretera entre San Cristóbal de las Casas y Palenque (2 de mayo de 2019)

Chiapas: realizan foro sobre Libre determinación(10 de agosto de 2018)

Chiapas: MODEVITE Mobilizes in Defense of Mother Earth and Self-Determinationm (November 24, 2017)

Chiapas: Movement in Defense of Life and Territory 12-Day Pilgrimage Ends in San Cristobal de Las Casas (December 2, 2016)