National: Peace Brigades International (PBI) publishes report, “Mexico at Peace? Security Strategy and Human Rights”

February 5, 2015


On 21 January, Peace Brigades International, a non-governmental organization with 30 years of experience in international accompaniment and a permanent presence in Mexico since 1999, published its new report, “Mexico at Peace? Security Strategy and Human Rights.”  The document is based on interviews carried out by PBI with human-rights defenders who call into question a number of aspects of the federal government’s security strategy, particularly with regard to the “considerable role still played by the Army in public-security tasks, with no clear end-date [in sight].”

The new report stresses that, despite the official discourse, “PBI has not observed a Mexico at peace during the first two years of the government of Enrique Peña Nieto, but rather can speak to the continuity of the problems related to public-security policies and their worrying effects on the respect for human rights in the country.”

The report has been presented publicly at a meeting attended by members of civil organizations who shared their concerns regarding the human-rights situation in the country, as well as diplomatic representatives from the German, Dutch, Canadian, French, Swiss, Norwegian, and European Union embassies.

In its conclusions to the report, PBI manifests its worry for the present context of insecurity and calls on foreign governments and their diplomatic representatives in Mexico to base their relations with Mexico on the state of Mexican human-rights defenders.  In this way, it also called on the Mexican State to recognize the importance and legitimacy of the work carried out by rights-defenders, to assure their physical and psychological integrity, and to implement effective measures of protection, both nationally and internationally.

For more information (in Spanish):

Informe completo

Boletín de PBI México destaca consecuencias de la estrategia de seguridad para la defensa de DDHH (PBI, 21 de enero de 2015)

México, sin paz a pesar del discurso oficial: PBI (Centro ProDH, 22 de enero de 2015)

Repite Peña la lucha anticrimen del calderonismo, afirma grupo PBI (La Jornada, 22 de enero de 2015)

For more information from SIPAZ (in English):

National: Peace Brigades International presents report on situation of human-rights defenders in Mexico (23 April 2013)

Chiapas/International: Book presentation “Opening Borders with the Heart: Guide for the Application of a Psychosocial Focus in Migrant Contexts”

September 29, 2014

Portada de la guía (@OSC de defensa de derehos de los migrantes)

Cover of the Guide (@civil-society organizations defending the rights of migrants)

At the beginning of September, eight non-governmental organizations from Mexico and Central America met in Tapachula, Chiapas, to present their guide for the provision of comprehensive attention to migrants in public and private institutions: “Opening Borders with the Heart: Guide for the Application of a Psychosocial Focus in Migrant Contexts.”

This document, published in May 2014, seeks to contribute to the “recognition and implementation of a psychosocial focus in our region of Central America and Mexico, for migrants themselves, their families, and local communities as well as the organizations that work daily to defend their rights.”  The guide covers four themes: communities of origin, especially with regards to women; relatives of the disappeared; migrants homes; and teams that work with migrants.

For more information (in Spanish):

Descargar material Abriendo fronteras con el corazón: Guía para la aplicación del enfoque psicosocial en contextos migratorios

Proponen ONG´s guía para la atención integral de migrantes (Chiapas Paralelo, 6 de septiembre de 2014)

For more information from SIPAZ (in English):

National/Oaxaca: Father Solalinde declares that migrant flows will not diminish amidst imposition of new federal measures (5 August 2014)

National/Chiapas: Massive raids against migrants and attack on human-rights defenders (3 May 2014)

National: Migrant pilgrimage arrives in Mexico City (2 May 2014)

Chiapas: March from Suchiate river to denounce abuses against migrants, and beginning of hunger strike (29 April 2013)

National: creation of mechanism for human-rights observation amidst the militarization of the Southern Border

September 2, 2014

( 19 August, organizations from southeastern Mexico decided to “launch coordinated actions for monitoring, so as to demand the observance of responsibilities amidst the possible increase in human-rights violations” due to the “Southern Border Program” which was announced by the federal government on 7 July. These organizations foresee the program as including “the construction of more border infrastructure. Beyond this, there will be greater border control due to increased coordination among authorities of different State agencies, in addition to a greater presence of Army and Navy units. There will also be founded Centers for Comprehensive Attention to Border Transit.”

The organizations denounced that “this plan contains numerous ambiguities and retains a vision of natural security, prioritizing the control and flow of migration above human security” as well as the “lack of a Mexican migratory policy based in human rights that promotes the non-discrimination and multiculturalism implied by migratory flows.”

These organizations affirm that “since 2013 there have been observed numerous movements along the southern border which seek to increase its militarization, augment the presence of federal police, and re-enforce customs and biometrical controls. This militarization continues apace today, whether with the Southern Border Program or not, as we see in the constant and violent operations suffered by migrants in Tabasco and the coastal region of Chiapas.”

The organizations which are participating in this initiative include the following: the Migrant Home “la 72” in Tenosique, Tabasco; the San Francisco de Asís Migrant Home in Huixtla, Chiapas; the Fray Bartolomé de las Casas Center for Human Rights in San Cristóbal de las Casas, Chiapas; the Fray Matías de Córdova Center for Human Rights in Tapachula, Chiapas; and Enlace Comunicación y Capacitación in Comitán de Domínguez, Chiapas.

For more information (in Spanish):

Instalan mecanismo de observación con visión de derechos humanos ante la militarización de la Frontera Sur (boletín del Observatorio, 19 de agosto de 2014)

Estas son las principales acciones del Programa Frontera Sur para proteger a migrantes (Animal Político, 26 de agosto de 2014)

Critican Plan Frontera Sur; ven riesgos para migrantes (El Universal, 26 de agosto de 2014)

For more information from SIPAZ (in English):

National: Four years after the San Fernando massacre, “La 72” denounces new operations against migrants (26 de agosto de 2014)

National/Chiapas: Massive raids against migrants and attack on human-rights defenders (3 May 2014)

National: Migrant pilgrimage arrives in Mexico City (2 May 2014)

Mexico: Amnesty International presents its report on forced disappearances

June 10, 2013

On 4 June, the human-rights group Amnesty International (AI) presented its special report on forced disappearances in Mexico, entitled “Confronting a Nightmare: The Disappearance of Persons in Mexico.”  The report points out the “magnitude of what has happened and the negligence of the State” to provide justice to thousands.

“Between 2006 and 2012 there were registered in Mexico more than 26,000 persons as disappeared or not located.  It is not clear how many presently continue to have the status of disappeared.  Some are victims of forced disappearances in which public officials have been implicated,” claims the report.

AI also details that the police and security forces have been infiltrated by criminal groups, and that, for this reason, many officials collaborate with the disappearances carried out by these criminal groups.

The NGO asserts that “despite the alarming number” of cases, “the authorities have failed systematically to investigate and clarify the great majority of these,” not just during the presidency of Felipe Calderón (2006-2012), but also during that of Enrique Peña Nieto.

For more information (in Spanish):

Enfrentarse a una pesadilla: Desapariciones en México, informe Amnistía Internacional, 4 de junio 2013

Funcionarios están metidos en más de la mitad de las desapariciones forzadas en México: Informe de Amnistía, Sinembargo, 4 de junio de 2013

 AI pide a México dar resultados sobre desapariciones, Crónica, 4 de junio de 2013

Insuficientes, los pasos del gobierno en combate a desapariciones: AI, La jornada, 4 de junio de 2013

For more information from SIPAZ (in English):

Mexico: Insufficient attention to human rights on the part of EPN (20 March 2013)

National: Amnesty International presents report regarding use of torture in Mexico (19 October 2012)

National: International judges report on conclusions of the observation of state of justice in Mexico (12 October 2012)

Chiapas: Presentation of report on torture in Chiapas “From Cruelty to Cynicism” (2 July 2012)

The OMCT condemns torture in Chiapas (18 August 2011)

National/International: Calderón requests that the UN revise its drug strategy

October 12, 2012

Felipe Calderón @ Milenio

On 26 September, Felipe Calderón Hinojosa gave his final speech as president of Mexico before the General Assembly of the United Nations, during which he demanded that all member-nations open a debate regarding the prohibition of the consumption of drugs.

Calderón focused centrally on drug violence, asserting that if consumer countries, particularly the U.S., are incapable of restricting consumption, this debate should be opened; he anticipated that Mexico will lead a multinational strategy by means of an accord to detain the flow of arms across borders.  “The legal combat against drugs has generated a black market that leaves huge economic profit for criminal organizations that now have an unlimited capacity for corruption that allows them to buy governments,” he noted.  “The economic power of the organizations dedicated to trafficking in drugs, weapons, money, and persons is being converted into political power,” he said.  ‘The criminals seek to control territory; they dispute the strength of states.”

The Mexican president added that if UN member states “cannot or will not reduce their consumption of drugs, at least they should regulate the exorbitant flow of resources that finance criminals.”  But “if this cannot happen, it is the time to explore other alternatives if reduction in consumption cannot be achieved.”

For this reason, he announced that Mexico will support an agreement that limits or prohibits the trade in conventional arms when there exists the risk that these will be utilized to commit violations of international law.

For some analysts, the war-strategy of the present government, which has resulted in the deaths of tens of thousands, in fact led to the multiplication of drug-trafficking groups in Mexico.  They indicate that the smallest and most violent groups took the place of the larger ones, building new alliances instead of disappearing.  At the same time, the Sinaloa cartel and the Zetas cartel arose as the principal organized-crime groups in Mexico.

For more information (in Spanish):

La ONU debe debatir sobre el enfoque prohibicionista de la droga: Calderón (CNN México, 26 de septiembre de 2012)

La esquizofrenia de Calderón (Proceso, 27 de septiembre de 2012)

Plantea Calderón ante la ONU analizar el enfoque prohibicionista de drogas (La Jornada, 26 de septiembre de 2012)

Urge Calderón a ONU “acción” anticrimen (Milenio, 26 de septiembre de 2012)

Debe ONU revisar prohibición sobre drogas: Calderón (El Universal, 26 de septiembre de 2012)

FCH pide en ONU revisar política en materia de drogas (El Universal, 27 de septiembre de 2012)

ONU: Calderón sorprende con discurso enérgico (El Nuevo Herald, 26 de septiembre de 2012)

En vivo: Asamblea General de la ONU (Aristegui Noticias, 26 de septiembre de 2012)

Presidente Felipe Calderón realiza su último discurso como presidente (Youtube, 26 de septiembre de 2012)

National: Reactions to the recognition of EPN’s electoral victory

September 18, 2012

Handing over of document confirming the PRI’s victory (

On 31 August 2012, Enrique Peña Nieto, candidate for the coalition Commitment to Mexico which is comprised of the Institutional Revolutionary Party (PRI) and the Green Ecological Party of Mexico (PVEM), received notice that he was officially accredited president-elect, following the validation by the Judicial Electoral Tribunal of the Federation (TEPJF) of the 1 July election.  He will take office as president on 1 December of this year.  In this way, the TEPFJ unanimously rejected the denunciations brought forward by leftwing parties to invalidate the presidential election.  Surrounding the Tribunal were more than 500 federal police, who protected the center from behind sandbags.

In light of the TEPJF’s decision, the reactions came quickly.  Both the Progressive Movement, led by Andrés Manuel López Obrador (AMLO, candidate for the leftwing parties in the July election), and social movements (#IAm132 in particular) and civil organizations rejected the failure of the magistrates.  Thousands of persons took to the streets of Mexico City to protest and surround the TEPJF center in protest.

AMLO called for a mobilization on 9 September in the Zócalo of the capital so as to discuss steps moving forward.  He declared, “Hopefully it will be understood in this way how they defend the regime of corruption, while we are prepared to abolish this.  We will not sign any cease-fire, nor will be concede anything, even though they continue to attack us, accusing us of being bad losers, messianic madmen, or just hungry for power.”

For his part, President Felipe Calderón congratulated EPN and wished him the best successes as Executive.  PAN members said for their part that they did not support AMLO with his demands, but they will call for transparency in election (in particular, that the IFE resolve the two complaints regarding the Monex case).

Similarly, PRI representatives called for resolutions to be observed.  EPN himself gave a speech in the center of the Electoral Tribunal affirming that legality is fundamental for democratic governance, and that all candidates should have to respect this.

For more information (in Spanish):

“Es tiempo de iniciar una nueva etapa”, dice Enrique Peña Nieto (CNN México, 31 de agosto de 2012)

“No puedo aceptar el fallo del Tribunal Electoral”: López Obrador (CNN México, 31 de agosto de 2012)

Condenan representantes de la izquierda fallo del TEPJF (Proceso, 31 de agosto de 2012)

Panistas piden continuar pesquisas de caso Monex (El Universal, 1 de septiembre de 2012)

Comicios irregulares no pueden ser legítimos, dice #YoSoy132 (La Jornada, 1 de septiembre de 2012)

For more information from SIPAZ (in English):

Oaxaca: Protests against “imposition,” detention, and torture (25 July 2012)

National: “National Convention against Imposition” in Atenco (25 July 2012)

National: In the presidential elections, a controversial electoral process and results (10 July 2012)

National: In the presidential elections, a controversial electoral process and results

July 10, 2012

Elections in San Cristóbal, 1 July 2012 (@SIPAZ)

The presidential elections of 1 July have exhibited a divided Mexican society.  On the one hand, the Federal Electoral Institute (IFE) that was to administer these elections declared on election night that the candidate for the electoral alliance “Commitment to Mexico” between the Institutional Revolutionary Party (PRI) and the Green Ecological of Mexico (PVEM), Enrique Peña Nieto, defeated Andrés Manuel López Obrador, candidate of the “Progressive Movement” coalition comprised of the Party for Democratic Revolution (PRD), the Labor Party, and the Citizens’ Movement.  In third place came Josefina Vázquez Mota of the National Action Party (PAN), leaving Gabriel Quadri de la Torre in last place (PANAL).  These results were based on the Program of Preliminary Electoral Results (PREP), which indicates the tendencies without necessarily declaring these to be final.  Following the IFE’s announcement by means of its president, Leonardo Valdés, President Felipe Calderón openly supported the IFE’s position, which had granted victory to Peña Nieto.  The PRI candidate then declared himself winner of the elections, while López Obrador expressed on the night of 1 July that he would determine his position once official data on the electoral count had been released.

Beyond this, following the elections there have been presented demonstrations of incomformity with the process, as with the results of the election.  Part of this has to do with the mobilizations taken up by the movement #IAm132 on 2 July due to the irregularities that had been reported from several voting locations in the country, as well as due to the victory awarded to Peña Nieto by the IFE without its having official results.  For his part, López Obrador declared on Tuesday 3 July that he would challenge the results, and that a recount should be had in more than 100,000 voting spaces, given the evidence of irregularities there.  He denounced that the PRI electoral campaign exceeded the spending limits that had been established by law, and that votes had been bought as well as coerced by the PRI apparatus.  The IFE has reported that in the official computation of the vote that began on 4 July, 54.5% of the votes (78,012 booths) would be reviewed.

As of 4 July, according to 98.95% of the PREP’s findings, the following were the results for the presidential election: Enrique Peña Nieto 38.15%; Andrés Manuel López Obrador 31.64%; Josefina Vázquez Mota 25.40 %; Gabriel Quadri de la Torre 2.30%.

For more information (in Spanish):

Resultados del PREP 2012

Hubo irregularidades que afectan 30% de la votación: Alianza Cívica(La Jornada, 5 de julio de 2012)

Coacción y compra de votos benefició al PRI: Alianza Cívica (Animal Político, 4 de julio de 2012)

Canalizó el PRI 160 MDP vía monederos electrónicos para compra de votos, denuncia Monreal (Proceso, 4 de julio de 2012)

 Se contará 54.5% de votos de comicio presidencial: IFE (La Jornada, 4 de julio de 2012)

Marcha #YoSoy132 en repudio a imposición del candidato priísta (La Jornada, 3 de julio de 2012)

Coacción, agresiones, falta de boletas y robo de urnas empañan elecciones en ocho estados (La Jornada, 2 de julio de 2012)

Misión de OEA destaca orden en elecciones (El Universal, 2 de julio de 2012)

La ONU encabeza ejercicio de observación en México, recibe 1,300 denuncias (CNN México, 2 de julio de 2012)


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