National/International: CNI Groups Organize as USMCA Comes into Effect

July 4, 2020

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At the end of June, before the imminent entry into effect of the new free trade agreement between Mexico, the United States and Canada (USMCA), the Metropolitan Anticapitalist and Antipatriarchal Coordination and the Indigenous Council of Government (CIG) of the National Indigenous Congress (CNI) called for a series of protest activities that will include: a virtual march “Against USMCA! No to the New Trade Agreement between the US, Canada and Mexico!”, On July 1st; a virtual Forum “Analysis and Perspectives: a Comparative Framework of NAFTA-1994 and its Contributions to Social Inequalities”, on July 16th; and a public presentation of the legal resources presented before national and international bodies against megaprojects, on July 30th and 31st.

On July 1st, the day the new trade agreement came into force, the Assembly of Indigenous Peoples of the Isthmus in Defense of Land and Territory (APIIDTT), also part of the CNI, published a statement denouncing that this type of agreements “cement the legal frameworks to use force by law in the imposition of megaprojects in Mexico, as well as a whole series of policies, laws and reforms that violate the human rights of indigenous peoples and the Mexican people.”

It declared that the wave of violence that plagues the Isthmus of Tehuantepec is “linked to the imposition of megaprojects and extractivist policies of the Mexican government”, in particular the Trans-Systemic/Interoceanic Corridor-Train, “a historic project that since the mid-19th century has been proposing using the geostrategic position of the Mexican Isthmus as a commercial node for global trade, this as part of the expansionist project of the US, which, by not achieving its objective in Mexico, gained control over the Panama Canal, a project that is currently obsolete compared to the demand from this rampant global market.”

It warned about the fact that “the Mexican Isthmus is seen as the primary node in these treaties, and with the discourse of emerging from the economic crisis exacerbated by the COVID-19 pandemic, national and international pressure is created in our region by capital to streamline the works and construction of this Trans-Systemic/Interoceanic Corridor-Train from the port of Coatzacoalco, Veracruz to the port of Salina Cruz, Oaxaca, interconnected with Section 1 of the Maya Train, passing through the new Dos Bocas refinery and extending from Salina Cruz to Tapachula, Chiapas, to consolidate an energy, rail, port and industrial corridor, militarizing and reordering the entire south-southeast of Mexico and placing the new border with the US on the Tehuantepec Isthmus.”

Given this, the APIIDTT made a “call to organization, to resistance and to fight for the life and future of coming generations. The Isthmus is Ours, not the companies, nor the governments, it is of the indigenous and Afro-descendant peoples, it is of the Mexican people and of any person who decides to defend it, take care of it, and respect it.”

For more information in Spanish:

Boletín completo (APIIDTT, 1ero de julio de 2020)

Tratados como el T-MEC «cimientan los marcos jurídicos para usar la fuerza» contra los pueblos: comunidades del Istmo (Desinformémonos, 1ero de julio de 2020)

Jornada de lucha contra el T-MEC y los megaproyectos (CNI, 30 de junio de 2020)

For more information from SIPAZ: 

National/International: USMCA Comes into Effect with Mechanisms for Internet Censorship and Criminalization of Digital Locks Evasion (July 3, 2020)

National/International: United States Formally Approves USMCA Trade Agreement(February 2, 2020)

National/International: Mexican Senate Ratifies US-Mexico-Canada Agreement (July 4, 2019)

National/International: OSC Asks for Suspension of Agreement with US to Convert Mexico into “Migration Filter” in Return for Favors in Renegotiation of NAFTA (June 25, 2018)

 


Oaxaca: Complaint Lodged against Nation Guard for Absence in San Mateo del Mar

July 3, 2020

san-mateo-mar-oaxaca-1024x529@desinformemonos

In a statement published on June 28th, municipal agencies and community authorities that constitute the municipality of San Mateo del Mar blamed the municipal president along with a businessman from the same municipality for the violent events during the last two months that have left more than 15 people killed, houses burned and several people injured. They reported that insecurity continues as well as the absence of the government, despite their various requests for security measures.

They pointed out that this is not an internal conflict between communities, but rather attacks by an armed group controlled by an external agent with economic and political interests that intends to continue controlling, lying and distorting the truth for their personal ends. The statement emphasized that for this reason “since last year and since January 20th, 2020, the State government was informed and intervention requested by the authorities of the municipal capital and the agencies and communities that make up the Ikoots municipality of San Mateo del Mar.”

Representatives from the 13 communities openly questioned the actions of the state and federal authorities as well as the National Guard on June 21st:

“- Why did the National Guard abandon the town on the night of June 21st, why did they withdraw from the place?

– Why did the State Government not see to it when we requested attention?

– Who did nothing or did not act accordingly to avoid this tragedy?

– To which political and economic interests do government institutions that violate our autonomy respond?”

More information in Spanish:

Ponen queja contra Guardia Nacional por abandonar San Mateo del Mar en medio del conflicto (Educa Oaxaca, 30 de junio)

En San Mateo del Mar, la violencia de desbordó a la vista de todos y terminó en masacre(El Universal Oaxaca, 29 de junio)

Responsabilizan a alcalde por asesinatos en San Mateo del Mar, Oaxaca(Mileno, 29 de junio)

LA VIOLENCIA SISTEMICA CRIMINALIZA A PUEBLO INDIGENA IKOOTS(Comunicado Agencias Municipales y Comunidades que integran el municipio de San Mateo del Mar, 28 de junio)

More information from SIPAZ: 

Oaxaca: Violent Attacks in San Mateo del Mar Leave 15 Dead (June 23, 2020)

 

Oaxaca: Violence in San Mateo del Mar Leaves One Dead (May 7, 2020)

Oaxaca: Conflicto post-electoral en San Mateo del Mar (September 9, 2017)

 


Chiapas: State Will Have 25 National Guard Military Barracks in 2022

June 16, 2020

GN3@ChiapasParalelo

Two years from now, Chiapas will have eight new National Guard military barracks, of which two have planned construction dates for this year. This is stated in the report on the Public Security Situation in the State in April, prepared by the federal government. The same document adds that by 2022, 24 National Guard military barracks are planned in four security zones in the state.

During the months of 2020, it is intended to build a barracks in Tonala and one more in Las Margaritas; for 2021 others are contemplated in Suchiate, Huehuetan, Comalapa, Chilon, Bochil and Palenque.

The planned construction implies that several places will have two military barracks in the area, as in the case of Tonala, Las Margaritas and Palenque, due to their different functions, described as organized crime, the flow of migration, a symbolic site of the Zapatista Army of National Liberation (EZLN) or to give a secure image in tourist centers, the newspaper Cuarto Poder reported.

Currently, there are National Guard military barracks in Tapachula, Villa Comaltitlan, Acapetahua, Mapastepec, Pijijiapan, Tonala and Arriaga on the Chiapas coast. In the 39th Military Zone, others are located in Marqués de Comillas, Las Margaritas, Comalapa and Ocosingo, and there are also barracks in Palenque and Pichucalco, while in the 31st Military Zone there are barracks in Villaflores, Cintalapa and Chiapa de Corzo.

For more information in Spanish:

Para 2022, Guardia Nacional tendrá 24 cuarteles en Chiapas, (ChiapasParalelo, 9 de junio de 2020)

Construirán 8 cuarteles de la GN en Chiapas, (CuartoPoder, 11 de junio de 2020)

For more information from SIPAZ. 

Chiapas: National Guard and Police Oppression of Migrants Protesting over COVID-19 Fears (March 30, 2020)

 

Chiapas/International: Caravan of 4,000 Reaches Southern Border – Stopped by National Guard (January 21, 2020)

National: Four Members of National Guard Die in Guerrero and Chiapas (October 7, 2019)

International/National: UNO Calls for Evaluation of National Guard as Migratory Control in Mexico (September 2, 2019)

National: National Guard Secondary Laws Passed; Concerns over Human Rights Continue (May 28, 2019)

For more information in Spanish:

Para 2022, Guardia Nacional tendrá 24 cuarteles en Chiapas, (ChiapasParalelo, 9 de junio de 2020)

Construirán 8 cuarteles de la GN en Chiapas, (CuartoPoder, 11 de junio de 2020)

For more information from SIPAZ. 

Chiapas: National Guard and Police Oppression of Migrants Protesting over COVID-19 Fears (March 30, 2020)

Chiapas/International: Caravan of 4,000 Reaches Southern Border – Stopped by National Guard (January 21, 2020)

National: Four Members of National Guard Die in Guerrero and Chiapas (October 7, 2019)

International/National: UNO Calls for Evaluation of National Guard as Migratory Control in Mexico (September 2, 2019)

National: National Guard Secondary Laws Passed; Concerns over Human Rights Continue (May 28, 2019)

 


Oaxaca: “The Isthmus is Ours” Campaign Rejects Integration of “Tehuantepec Isthmus Interoceanic Corridor Regional Committee for Social Attention”

May 19, 2020

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In a statement published on May 15th, the organizations that are part of the “The Isthmus is Ours” campaign rejected the integration of the ” Isthmus of Tehuantepec Interoceanic Corridor Regional Committee for Social Attention” initiated at the beginning of the month, an act that they called “a stab in the back to their own peoples.”

“A supposed regional committee [was formed] to guarantee the installation of the set of mega-death projects called the Program for the Integral Development of the Isthmus-Interoceanic Corridor. Municipal presidents, the Oaxaca state government and the federal government are offering our lands and invaluable natural assets to large companies. and transnational corporations, without informing and, much less, consulting their councils, communities, neighborhoods, colonies and inhabitants of the Tehuantepec Isthmus region”,they denounced.

They considered the fact “a mockery and a flagrant violation of the collective human rights of Indigenous Peoples”. They affirmed that it is “highly negative for our peoples that, abusing the context of a health emergency, the imposition of this neoliberal project continues, which, if implemented, would mean billions of dollars for private and multinational benefits, at the expense of nature, the culture and ways of life of the peoples. This, when there are not even basic supplies for patient care and for the protection of workers in hospitals and health centers in the area. In addition, the installation of this Committee continues to ignore the observations and complaints of various communities and organizations in the region and the country, regarding the Environmental Impact Statement for the modernization of the current railroad, instead extending said EIR, for the section La Mata – Salina Cruz.”

They confirmed their position: “All these megaprojects have only generated belts of misery; have forced populations to migrate out of the region, polluting and degrading the environment as well as local ecosystems, seriously affected the health of the local population, induced social pathology (alcoholism, drug addiction, intra-family violence, femi-homicides) destroying the tissue social-community. On the other hand, they have only created precarious, temporary jobs, without job benefits, through companies that subcontract our countrymen to avoid responsibilities. In addition, it is noteworthy that, with regard to the increasingly intense wave of poor migrant families, with this “Integral Development Program”, the 4T government plans to build a “green” wall without partitions, to contain the migrant advance towards the United States and make the region a militarized barrier to hyper-precarious employment, with over-exploited migrant labor.”

It should be noted that in the event in which the Committee was formed, Rafael Marin Mollinedo, general director of the Interoceanic Corridor of the Isthmus of Tehuantepec (CIIT), asked the councilors present to see to the demands of the citizens, having learned of “some situations adverse to the project”: “If people show disagreement this work will not be done; Everyone’s participation is important and you have to be and have leaders who help minimize complaints; unfortunately old demands are coming to light, they are taking advantage of the moment to be seen to, so I ask for your support.”

For more information in Spanish:

Organizaciones indígenas y comunitarias, rechazamos la integración del llamado Comité Regional para la Atención Social del Corredor Interoceánico del Istmo de Tehuantepec (OSC, 15 de mayo de 2020)

Instalan Comité Regional de Atención Social del Corredor Interoceánico (La Jornada, 2 de mayo de 2020)

Instalan Comité Regional para la Atención Social del Corredor interoceánico del Istmo de Tehuantepec (Istmopress, 1ero de mayo de 2020)

For more information from SIPAZ:

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)

Oaxaca: Assembly of Isthmus Peoples in Resistance to Megaprojects Formed (March 19, 2020)

https://www.sipaz.org/focus-the-trans-isthmus-corridor-a-not-so-new-project-of-the-new-government/?lang=en (March, 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: Armed Forces Decreed Public Security Duties for Five Years; “Militarism Came out of the Closet” – CSO

May 14, 2020

fuerzas-armadas-617x347@Gobierno de Mexico

On May 11th, a decree was published that will attribute extraordinary public security tasks to the Armed Forces for the next five years in aid of the National Guard (GN). The document is titled “Agreement by which the permanent Armed Forces are available to carry out public security tasks in an extraordinary, regulated, supervised, subordinate and complementary manner” and aims to ensure that the GN develops its structure, technical capabilities and implementation throughout the national territory by this means. This decree complies with the fifth constitutional transitory article on National Guard that Congress approved last year. It argues that this auxiliary work of the armed forces must not exceed a period of five years (until March 2024, seven months before the end of the six-year term of President Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador (AMLO)).

The decree provides that the military participate in “safeguarding the integrity of people and their assets; guarantee, maintain and restore order and social peace, as well as prevent the commission of crimes” in immigration control centers, federal highways, railways, airports, customs, fiscal areas and urban spaces considered as federal areas, among others.

The text published in the official government gazette does not clarify who will have command of the military forces dedicated to these tasks, since it only instructs the secretary of the branch, Alfonso Durazo, to coordinate with the secretaries of National Defense (SEDENA) and the Navy- Mexican Navy (SEMAR). However, it indicates that the supervision of members of SEDENA and SEMAR will correspond to the internal control bodies of each agency, so that the Ministry of Citizen Security and Protection will not have the capacity to sanction members of the armed forces under its coordination.

Opposition parties questioned whether the decree is giving powers to the Armed Forces that exceed what the Constitution mandates, because it does not subordinate military action to civilian command in matters of security and that it formalizes the militarization of the country.

For its part, the group #SeguridadSinGuerra (Security Without War), made up of more than 30 civil organizations, expressed its rejection of the decree, considering that “it has a series of gaps, including the need for the temporal and geographical scope in which the Armed Forces will act with powers of public security, does not contemplate accountability mechanisms, nor does it guarantee that the armed forces will subordinate themselves to a civilian power.”

“A government that is truly committed to the demilitarization of the country and the construction of peace should not issue an agreement of this type, but rather clear rules, precise objectives and a system of supervision and accountability while they continue on the streets,” the collective said.

The decree also generated reactions on social networks with labels such as #FueraDictaduraMilitar (Military Dictatorship Out) or # ResistenciaPorMéxico (Resistance For Mexico), with comments expressing concerns that it could affect the liberties of citizens or accusing AMLO of having a contradictory discourse by opposing the militarization of the streets during the six-year terms of Felipe Calderon Hinojosa, and Enrique Peña Nieto, but legally empowering the Armed Forces to carry out public security actions.

For more information in Spanish:

AMLO ordena la intervención del Ejército en labores de seguridad pública (Proceso, 11 de mayo de 2020)

Senadores de oposición chocan por decreto de AMLO (Proceso, 11 de mayo de 2020)

La oposición y sociedad civil protestan en la Red contra decreto que da facultades a militares(Sin Embargo, 11 de mayo de 2020)

Con decreto de AMLO, militarismo salió del closet: colectivo Seguridad sin Guerra (El Universal, 11 de mayo de 2020)

Se oficializa el apoyo de militares a la GN (La Jornada, 12 de mayo de 2020)

AMLO legaliza intervención militar en 12 tareas policiales; ONG acusan falta de plazos y controles (Animal Político, 12 de mayo de 2020)

For more infrmation from SIPAZ:

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: National Guard Secondary Laws Passed; Concerns over Human Rights Continue (May 28, 2019)

National: AMLO Confirms Head of National Guard Will Be Serving Military Officer(April 9, 2019)

National: NGOs, Activists and CNDH Insist on Necessity that National Guard Be “Truly Civil” (April 8, 2019)

 


Oaxaca: Organizations, Communities and Movements Demand Suspension of Trans-Isthmus Project

May 2, 2020

oaxaca

In a joint statement, more than 150 organizations, collectives and institutions demanded from President Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador (AMLO) and the governments of the states of Oaxaca, Veracruz, Chiapas and Tabasco, the immediate cancellation of the so-called “Program of Integral Development of the Isthmus of Tehuantepec-Corridor and Interoceanic Train (PDIIT-TI) ”. Instead, they spoke in favor of building an alternative proposal – based on reflection and horizontal dialogue.

They denounced that the right to self-determination of indigenous and black peoples, peasant communities and the population in general that will be affected by said “Program” and has not been respected as they have not been able to express their approval or rejection through their assemblies.

In addition, they foresee strong environmental impacts “if the new imposition of this set of megaprojects is allowed in the Isthmus of Tehuantepec (the area with the greatest biological diversity and the largest producer of ecosystem services in Mexico and Mesoamerica, and therefore also the owner of immense cultural diversity), pollution, health affectation and global warming would be exacerbated, and the basic needs of the inhabitants and towns of a large portion of the south-southeast of our country, as well as the life of future generations, would be compromised.”

On the other hand, they recalled that “development” projects previously implemented in the Isthmus region, “despite their promises of “modernity” and well-being, have not really benefited local populations; on the contrary, they have generated a severe deterioration in their ways of life, their cultures, the environment, the community social fabric, and have been affected by an increase in militarization.”

For more informaton in Spanish:

Exigen la cancelación del Programa Istmo de Tehuantepec-Corredor y Tren Interoceánico, Proceso 28 de abril 2020

PRONUNCIAMIENTO PÚBLICO: CORREDOR Y TREN TRANSÍSTMICO: AMBICIÓN TRASNACIONAL, DEPREDACIÓN Y SOBERANÍA EN RIESGO, EN TIEMPOS DE CRISIS, RECESIÓN, PÁNICO Y PANDEMIA

For more information from SIPAZ:

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

Oaxaca: Assembly of Isthmus Peoples in Resistance to Megaprojects Formed (March 19, 2020)

https://www.sipaz.org/focus-the-trans-isthmus-corridor-a-not-so-new-project-of-the-new-government/?lang=en (March, 2020)


Chiapas: “Let’s Talk about Government Programs, Megaprojects and the Effects they Have on the Lives of Indigenous Campesina Women and Communities” Forum Held

February 28, 2020

IMG-20200224-WA0020@Centro de Derechos de la Mujer de Chiapas

On February 20th and 21st, the “Let’s Talk about Government Programs, Megaprojects and the Effects they have on the Lives of Indigenous Campesina Women and Communities” Forum was held at the CIDECI-Unitierra facilities in San Cristobal de Las Casas. More than 120 people from the Highlands, Plains, Jungle and North of Chiapas regions participated

In a final pronouncement, the participants commented that during the Forum they analyzed “the situation that we live in our territories against the implementation of megaprojects undertaken by the government of Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador, in complicity with the large transnational companies.” They expressed that they managed to “map the military presence in the territories, the social programs present, the arrival of officials in search of information about our families: number of children, amount of land, number of young people in our homes, among others; which puts us in a situation of uncertainty because we don’t know the purpose of that data.”

They expressed their “total rejection of the megaprojects of destruction and death such as the San Cristobal-Palenque super highway, the privatization of water, mining, as well as the hydroelectric plant, the Maya Train, agricultural programs such as Sembrado Vida that combined with other social programs and the militarization of Chiapas, aim to break the social fabric, divide communities, families and weaken social movements that fight and resist in defense of life, land and territory.”

Women denounced that “assistance programs and projects are reaching our communities, specifically agroindustrial projects aimed mostly at men, excluding us for the simple fact of being women,” in particular the Sembrando Vida Program and other programs aimed at the countryside. “They grant financial support only to men and do not solve family needs; On the contrary, they strengthen male chauvinism, the consumption of alcohol and drugs, generating a significant increase in violence against women and the abandonment of family plots. By prioritizing the programs of the countryside that submit, control, manipulate and decide for the lives of the people, the government manipulates the situation of poverty experienced by hundreds of indigenous and campesino families, turning them into slaves and waiters of the capitalist government. In this way we see how neoliberalism is disrupting community structures, breaking the processes of self-determination and autonomy of the original peoples,” they declared.

They concluded by telling the government that “we are not afraid of their military, that we declare our territories free of megaprojects and military. Despite the criminalization of our partners and social advocates, we will not abandon our struggle, quite the opposite, we will unite our voice, our resistance and rebellion, our anger and our hearts in our struggle that is for life.”

For more information in Spanish:

PRONUNCIAMIENTO EN EL MARCO DEL FORO: “Hablemos sobre los programas de gobierno, megaproyectos y los efectos que tienen en la vida de las mujeres campesinas indígenas y en las comunidades” (23 de febrero de 2020)

For more information from SIPAZ:

Nacional : se lleva a cabo la asamblea Nacional en Defensa de la Madre Tierra y el Territorio, en la comunidad de Amilcingo, Morelos (February 24, 2020)

National: EZLN and CNI Hold Events on the First Anniversary of the Murder Samir Flores (February 25, 2020)

Chiapas/Mexico: EZLN, CNI and CIG Convene Actions in Defense of Territory and Mother Earth “We Are All Samir” (January 14, 2020)

Chiapas/National: Fourth Assembly of CNI-CIG Held in San Cristobal de Las Casas (January 13, 2020)


National: Fourth Open Letter to Cuarta Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador from Javier Sicilia

January 30, 2020

13acf625-19ad-41e5-aec6-ecdf957b2f97-696x351Photo @ Somoselmedio

Dear president,

You know that I am a poet, a poet who, for very painful reasons that you also know and that are related to what brought me along with others to your home, stopped practising the craft of the poem. However, poetry – which is a gift, a grace – remains in me and has not stopped accompanying me, along with the suffering of the victims and through the voice of other poets, along this path. It, from time immemorial, guards the meanings of the tribe and becomes present when those meanings are corrupted or falter in public life. The Nabi, who the tradition of the West are called prophets (“those who speak in the name of …” is their etymological meaning) proliferated when the Hebrew people had a descendant of kings, of human beings, we could say, of State. Its function – beyond what Judeo-Christian theology attributes to them and from what popular imagery has attributed them with – was not to guess the future, but to remind the king and the people of fundamental and old truths like the mountains, which were forgotten or lost. Remember, President, Natan and his relationship with David. A heavy job, sometimes ungrateful, that forces the poet to leave his solitude – the privileged scope of his work – and sometimes to suffer from misunderstanding, insult, disqualification and defamation. Remember, President, Jeremiah.

Despite this, the poet, wrote Albert Camus, “in any circumstance of his life, dark or provisionally famous, constrained by tyranny or free to express himself” finds a community that justifies it on condition that, as we have done now walking to your home, assume those two tasks that constitute the greatness and weight of one’s vocation: the service of truth, justice, dignity and freedom. His nature as voice of the tribe cannot accommodate lies, servitude or crime, because where they prevail, as they prevail today in our nation, horror and destruction of common life grow.

That is why despite my personal weaknesses, the possibility that you refuse to receive us, the nobility of that vocation has led me to walk again, next to others, to resist, to give a place to the meaning that the word holds and look again for truth, justice and peace that one day, on November 14th, 2018, at the Tlatelolco University Cultural Center (CCUT), you and the victims agreed, that you forgot and that, in so much horror, so much impunity and death, you owe us and owe yourself, President.

Therefore, I am going to summarize, through some verses, what we have come to tell you today. They are neither mine nor any of the poets who have accompanied me. But they belong to the river of tradition that goes back to the Hebrew Nabis, the Hellenic Rapsodas and the Nahua Xochikuikani. They are from Maria Mercedes Carranza, a Colombian poet, killed in 2003, who suffered, along with her people, horrors similar to those that our country has been living for almost two decades:

“Everything is ruined in this house, / the embrace and music are in ruins, / fate every morning, laughs are ruins; / tears, silence, dreams. / The windows show destroyed landscapes, / flesh and ash get confused on faces, / in mouths the words stir with fear./ In this house we are all buried alive. ”

Our house, Mexico, and the flag that represents it and that we have carried and brought with us throughout these days of long walking, is, like the house of Mercedes Carranza, full of violence, blood, death, disappearances, graves, lies and impunity; it is plagued with heinous crimes against which language fails; its roads, its squares, its enclosures are taken by soulless beings that, with the support of state officials and companies, corrupt, disappear and kill our children, our women, our young people, our old people, dig sinister graves, they threaten us and exhibit their atrocities to inhibit our vital reactions.

We know you are not responsible for it, President. You inherited this horror from administrations that only had imagination for violence, impunity and corruption. But the fact that you have turned your back on the agenda of truth, justice and peace as a priority of the nation, an agenda to which you committed on September 14th, 2018 and that you asked us to create together with the SEGOB; the fact that you do not heed the call of the indigenous peoples to stop the megaprojects, whose base is neoliberal and, therefore, destructive of the land and community and peoples’ lives; the fact that migration is criminalized; the fact that in your morning you use a language that, far from calling for unity, polarizes the nation; the fact that you have abandoned, disarticulated and questioned the institutions that citizens create to attend to victims (the Victim Assistance Commission, the National Search Commission and the CNDH); the fact of reducing peace to a security issue and abandoning truth and justice, the State’s networks of complicity with organized crime have been articulated, and their costs in pain and death have been too high: about 35,000 murders added to the 61,000 disappeared – more than 5,000 in the last year -, to the hundreds of thousands of victims inherited from past bad administrations – practically all of them still do not know the truth and much less justice – to an even greater and still inaccurate number of tortured and displaced, and the serious mistreatment of Central American migrants and indigenous peoples.

This has nothing to do with the good things you have undertaken. It has to do with a reality that goes beyond ordinary institutions and that if it is not assumed in the dimension of its national emergency and its humanitarian tragedy, it will spoil that good your government seeks. Without truth – let’s repeat it again – there will be no justice or reconciliation or amnesty or peace or transformation. All there will be is more hell.

You ask us for more time to seek security, but you don’t talk about truth or justice. After the massacre of the LeBaron family, which once again brought the dimension of the horror and tragedy of the country to the public consciousness, there is only time to face it with a State policy that, given the networks of complicity confined in the State, it is based on extraordinary mechanisms of truth and justice – a truth that must weave, based on those mechanisms, with the institutions created to confront it; a truth that must also happen for the respect to the indigenous autonomies, to the migrants and the strengthening of the municipalities. A State policy that, as a priority of the country, calls for the unity of the nation and the work of all (governments, victims, social organizations, churches, parties, universities, unions, companies, citizens). A State policy to which you, President, committed yourself more than a year ago, which victims, organizations, academia and experts worked with SEGOB and that today more than ever urgently needs to be carried out. A State policy that goes beyond, as is evident, the Security Cabinet and that must, therefore, be assumed and promoted by you who unfortunately you are not present because of serious and unfortunate prejudices towards the victims and the suffering of the country.

We must not repeat the past, President. That past has destroyed us and continues to destroy us. You have to create the new that preserves life. A true and authentic transformation of the country must be based on truth, justice and peace.

We know it is not easy. It is never easy to face a crisis of civilization of the size that we suffer today with radical measures. But not doing so from the root of truth and justice will make violence reign forever over a field of ossuaries, dispossession and fear. The truth, as Ricardo Raphael recently pointed out, “is the one that must prevail so that reality is known, so that the facts are exposed, so that the arguments weigh, so that justice is done and violence cannot be repeated.”

We, when walking here, have fulfilled our duty, which the word and poetry, which guard the meaning of a tribe, call us and which we will always defend. You, on the other hand, as President, have the dilemma of continuing to walk towards the horror that the first steps of your government have gone through or of uniting and taking us all through a State policy based on truth, justice, respect and the strengthening of the indigenous autonomies and of the municipalities, towards a true transformation, towards that hope to which one day you called us and which today as a bloody nation summons you.

While you respond to this dilemma in which the fate of everyone is played, we leave you with the Security Cabinet, in addition to these words, the verses of David Huerta, Tomas Calvillo and Maria Mercedes Carranza, who accompanied the press conferences and press releases of our walk, the voice of poetry that accompanied us in that of its poets along the way, to meditate in the silence of your heart the meaning. We also leave you the documents with the Transitional Justice proposals and, together with the Belisario Domínguez medal, which Mrs. Rosario Ibarra left in your custody, the symbol of the homeland that today is shot, bloodied, inverted, kidnapped, obscured by murders, disappearances, dispossession and destruction of lands, communities and aberrant crimes.

Return it to us along with the restored homeland as you promised to the victims and indigenous peoples during your campaign and to the victims when we met on May 8th at the Memory and Tolerance Museum and, as President-elect, on September 14th at CCUT. It is time, President, to put a real stop to so much pain, to so much death, to humiliation, to such a lie; time for suffering to beat again the heart and the earth can flourish; time to unite the bloody fractures of the country and to make with everyone the truth, justice and peace that we need so much. It is time to put the new wine in new wineskins.

You decide, President, on which side of history you want to walk to.

Javier Sicilia


National/Guerrero: Agreement to Reintroduce Interdisciplinary Group of Independent Experts in Ayotzinapa Case. Number of Disappeared Increases in the Country

January 14, 2020

728BD41B-73EA-4E39-B709-7AC3C07D5F36Photo @ Televisa News

On January 8th, parents of the 43 missing students from Ayotzinapa and the federal government agreed to reinstate the Interdisciplinary Group of Independent Experts (IGIE) in the investigation of the Iguala case.

In this regard, the Undersecretary for Human Rights, Population and Migration, Alejandro Encinas, said that one year after the Commission for Truth and Justice was created in the Ayotzinapa case, there are no “tangible results”, despite the fact that the government of Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador has “punctually fulfilled” its commitments to the fathers and mothers of the 43 disappeared student teachers, he told Proceso magazine.

In an interview, Paulo Abrao, Executive Secretary of the Inter-American Commission on Human Rights, recalled that the IACHR’s proposal “has been the reintegration of the IGIE, as well as some of its former members being part of the Technical Assistance Group” and he stressed that “there was an evaluation” and talked about the progress of the initiatives taken (by the Commission headed by Encinas), “which are very positive, but it is necessary to accelerate the processes to achieve the objective, which is the location of the students.”

Rosales Sierra, a lawyer for the Tlachinollan Mountain Human Rights Center the, said that “the participation of the IGIE in its previous stage, acting in the field, with broad powers to provide evidence, full adjunct powers, which they previously had, was transcendent, but only on paper, but it did not have the facilities to exercise them.” However, “we cannot put the expectations of the case in the IGIE, it is up to the government, the presidential Commission, the FGR and the special prosecutor’s office to work for the clarification, they have the burden of investigations.”

Regarding the issue of disappearance, the Secretary of the Interior (SEGOB) announced in recent weeks that during “the first year of the administration of President Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador 9,164 people were reported missing, of which only 43 percent were located; so there are 61,637 missing throughout the country.” He reported that the figures presented “are not yet final since at least 11 state prosecutors are still systematizing and updating all their information.”

Foe more information in Spanish:

Acuerdan reinstalación del GIEI en caso Ayotzinapa (El Universal, 8 de enero de 2019)

Encinas reconoce que no hay “resultados tangibles” en caso Iguala (Bajo Palabra, 8 de enero de 2019)

Encinas: en caso Ayotzinapa, se cumplen compromisos y hay avances (Milenio, 8 de enero de 2019)

En caso Ayotzinapa no hay “resultados tangibles”, admite Encinas (el Proceso, 8 de enero de 2019)

En México hay 61 mil 637 desaparecidos: Segob (Milenio, 6 de enero de 2019)

For more information from SIPAZ:

Guerrero: Actions by The Other Forgotten of Ayotzinapa Announced (January 4, 2020)

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

Guerrero/National: Reactions to Liberation of 24 Involved in Ayotzinapa Case (September 23, 2019)

Guerrero/National: Relatives of the 43 Student Teachers Disappeared in Iguala in 2014 Meet AMLO (September 23, 2019)

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

National/Guerrero: VIDEO of Torture in Ayotzinapa Case Belies “Historic Truth” (June 27, 2019)

Guerrero: Attorney General and SEDENA Denounced for Lack of Interest in Solving Ayotzinapa Case (May 17, 2019)

Guerrero/National: More Information Published on Role of Army in Ayotzinapa Case (March 15, 2019)

Guerrero/National: Commission for Truth and Access to Justice in Ayotzinapa Case Set Up. Federal Judge Orders Investigation into Possible Responsibility of Attorney General Employees for Irregularities (January 22nd, 2019)