Chiapas: MODEVITE Mobilizes in Defense of Mother Earth and Self-Determination

November 24, 2017

MODEVITEAuthorities from La Candelaria, Municipality of San Cristobal de Las Casas. Photo @: SIPAZ

On November 20th, thousands of indigenous people grouped in the Movement in Defense of Life and the Territory (Modevite in its Spanish acronym) mobilized in 11 municipalities and an ejido of Chiapas in defense of Mother Earth, for a dignified life and to demand respect for the free self-determination of indigenous peoples. In a statement, they explained: “We are one people who today want to express ourselves in each of the 12 fronts where we are. We denounce the constant threat of transnational extractive megaprojects and demand our right to the self-determination of peoples, in order to change the outdated and oppressive system that governs us.”

The event was called on 107 years of the beginning of the Mexican Revolution, and stressed that “the marginalization and misery of our peoples persist; violence is the daily bread and insecurity is what is breathed in the environment. Coupled with this, the colorful circus of political parties divides us, and they take advantage of our poverty” while governments at all levels “are accomplices of dispossession, abuses, violence and injustice.”

For this reason they propose “creating another system that promotes the community rather than individuality, that looks at the earth as a Mother and not as merchandise, that embraces the cultural diversity rooted in the spirituality of our ancestors to make way for the reconstruction of the fabric of social community”. They intend to promote “community governments that renew social relations among indigenous peoples, mestizos, diverse religions, adults and youth; community governments that renew politics by exercising the right to elect the authorities according to the indigenous normative systems of each people, to combat corruption and division of bad governments and thus ensure the defense of our Mother Earth and community harmony.”

More specifically, they asked the authorities to respond positively to the requests presented by the Community Government Commissions of the municipalities of Chilon and Sitala to the Electoral and Citizen Participation Institute (IEPC in tis Spanish acronym) of Chiapas, on November 17th for that they can govern themselves according to their own indigenous normative system.

For more information in Spanish:

Indígenas de Chiapas denuncian amenaza constante de megaproyectos y ambición de trasnacionales (Proceso 20 de noviembre de 2017)

MODEVITE se expresa en sus 12 frentes y afirma su apoyo a los municipios de Chilón y Sitalá en su búsqueda del gobierno comunitario (MODEVITE 20 de noviembre de 2017)

Pronunciamiento de las Comisiones de Gobierno Comunitario de Chilón y Sitalá (Boletín de prensa del MODEVITE 18 de noviembre de 2017)

Comisiones de Sitalá y Chilón exigen al IEPC respetar su derecho al Gobierno Comunitario, sin partidos políticos (Anuncio de Conferencia de prensa del MODEVITE 17 de noviembre de 2017)

Para más información de SIPAZ:

Chiapas: Pronunciamiento de MOVEDITE ante las campañas políticas anticipadas (22 de agosto de 2017)

Chiapas : Culmina peregrinación de 12 días del Movimiento de Defensa de la Vida y el Territorio en San Cristóbal de Las Casas (29 de noviembre de 2016)

Advertisements

Chiapas/International: The Zoque Believing People to Receive 2017 Nobel Peace Prize

October 28, 2017

ZoquePhoto:@Chiapas Denuncia Pública

On October 18th, 2017, a press conference was held in Tuxtla Gutierrez, Chiapas, to announce that the Indigenous Movement of the Zoque Believing People in Defense of Life and the Earth (ZODEVITE in its Spanish acronym) will receive the 2017 International Peace Prize. from the hands of the international organization Pax Christi, on October 29th in Rome, Italy.

In its press release the Zoque Believing People recognized that this peaceful movement is a call to stop the crisis of our civilization that threatens our world: “The Zoque peoples have declared themselves in permanent defense of our territories so that the different ways of life (human, animal and nature) are respected and revalued for the survival of humanity “

Their way of seeing this reality has been worthy of this award: “extractive megaprojects represent death and devastation for land and life, which is generated from above, that is, by the interests of transnational companies in their desire to accumulate material riches that only bring environmental, economic and political problems.”

They pointed out that: “For a decade now, have been trying to install mining, hydroelectric, geothermal and hydrocarbon extraction projects our Zoques in Chiapas that threaten to destroy a large part of the biocultural heritage, especially symbolic places such as the Chichonal Volcano – the house of the Piogba chuwe – and the mist mountains of Rayon and Tapalapa, but mainly large areas of corn crops, where the Zoques sustain their life, their cosmovision and love for the land are at risk because of the tender and concession of more than 160,000 hectares of land to private and foreign companies from several countries “.

This award “represents an encouragement in our journey and recognition of children, women, men and elderly Zoques who have decided to raise their voices to show the world their indignation and deep love for the land, which commits us to continue building the resistance of indigenous peoples, but it is also a message of peace and hope for all those peoples of Latin America who fight for life, water, land and territory.”

For more information in Spanish:

El Premio Internacional de Paz representa un aliento en nuestro caminar: Pueblo Creyente Zoque. (Chiapas Denuncia Pública, 18 de octubre de 2017)

Pueblo Zoque en Defensa de la Vida recibirá Premio Internacional de Paz. (CDH fray Bartolomé de las Casas, 5 de octubre de 2017)

Por qué el Pueblo Creyente Zoque marcha a favor del Agua, la Tierra y la Vida. (Otros Mundos Chiapas, 19 de junio de 2017

For more information from SIPAZ:

Chiapas: El pueblo Zoque se está movilizando contra los mega-proyectos en Chiapas. (29 de junio de 2017)

Chiapas: machan ejidos y comunidades de la zona zoque contra los proyectos extractivos. (3 de mayo de 2017)

Chiapas: Libre activista zoque, Silvia Juárez Juárez. (4 de julio de 2017)


Chiapas: 5,000 Men and Women on Pilgrimage against Mining in Chicomuselo

October 17, 2017

Chicomsuelo.pngPhoto @ SIPAZ

On October 1st, in the municipality of Chicomuselo, a meeting was held in Grecia ejido to analyze the threats posed by the mining concessions for the towns of Chiapas. The following day, the pilgrimage called “Movement against Mining and the Depletion of the Earth”, called by the parishes San Pedro and San Pablo and the “Samuel Ruiz” Committee for the Promotion and Defense of the Life of Chicomuselo, took place The march-procession was accompanied by Father Marcelo Perez, parish priest of Simojovel, several other religious leaders and human rights organizations, such as the Fray Bartolome de las Casas Center for Human Rights and the Chiapas Women’s Rights Center.

The inhabitants of the ejidos of Ricardo Flores Magon and Grecia was supported by men and women of several communities of Chiapas, some that faced a trip of twelve hours to attend the event, in its fight against projects of mining companies in the municipality of Chicomuselo. At the end, according to Proceso, 5,000 participants raised their voices and walked with banners and signs denouncing the damages caused by mining companies. The same media reported that at the end of the pilgrimage the participants concluded that: “Having heard the problems of different communities and organizations in resistance, we coincide in that our struggle in defense of Mother Earth has brought us as a consequence, omission, repression, intimidation, threats, persecution, imprisonment and killings of human rights defenders in Chiapas and other parts of the country and the world.”

For more information in Spanish:

Comunidad chiapaneca repudia operación de minera (Video) (Aristegui Noticias, 3 de octubre del 2017)

“Defensa de la tierra nos ha traído represión, amenazas, asesinatos”, denuncian en Chiapas (Proceso, 2 de octubre del 2017)

Empresas mineras provocan división comunitaria en Chicomuselo (CDH Fray Bartolomé de las Casas, 26 de septiembre del 2017)

For more information from SIPAZ:

Chiapas: Conferencia de prensa – NO A LA MINERÍA (28 de septiembre del 2017)

Chiapas: Comunidades de Chicomuselo denuncian incursiones de empresas mineras (25 de mayo de 2016)

Chiapas: Denuncian reinicio ilegal de actividades mineras en Chicomuselo (29 de enero de 2014)

Chiapas: marchan 2 mil personas al finalizarse el “Encuentro Chiapaneco en Unidad contra el Modelo Extractivo Minero” en Frontera Comalapa (1 de diciembre de 2012)

Chiapas: poder judicial exige que mina explotada por Blackfire permanezca clausurada (26 de octubre de 2010)

Chiapas: Amenaza de muerte al párroco de Chicomuselo (11 de octubre de 2010)

Chiapas: delegación canadiense investiga abusos de explotaciones mineras (2 de abril de 2010)

Chiapas: Matan a Mariano Abarca líder opositor a la operación en una mina (28 de noviembre de 2009)


Guerrero: Injunction Granted to Me’Phaa Community against Mining in Guerrero

July 25, 2017

GuerreroMembers of the San Miguel de Progreso Commission. Photo@: Tlachinollan

On June 28th, the Me’Phaa community of San Miguel del Progreso – “Juba Wajiín” – were granted an injunction against the Declaration of Land Freedom, which considered their territory free for mining activity. According to the Tlachinollan Human Rights Center (Tlachinollan), the injunction and protection by Federal Justice were granted to the Community of San Miguel del Progreso, as there was essentially foundation for the claim of violation, and therefore non-compliance with the constitutional and conventional obligation of the Mexican State to respect the rights of this indigenous-agrarian community Me’phaa de La Montaña de Guerrero was demonstrated.

It should be remembered that this is the second injunction granted to the community of San Miguel del Progreso – “Juba Wajiín” – against the mining threat in their territory. The first judgment of injunction against mining concessions was notified on February 12th, 2014. The challenge of that historic ruling brought the case before the Supreme Court of Justice (SCJN in its Spanish acronym).

Tlachinollan considers that this injunction “is an unprecedented achievement for the indigenous community and a recognition of the tireless and millennial struggle of the Me’phaa community of San Miguel del Progreso and the Regional Council of Agricultural Authorities of Montaña de Guerrero in the defense of their territory and their life in the face of the threat posed by open pit mining, which also encourages them to continue to organize locally and regionally.”

For more information in Spanish:

Júba Wajiín: Un rayo contra las mineras (Centro de derechos Humanos de la Montaña, a 17 de julio de 2017)

Otorgan amparo a comunidad Me’Phaa contra la explotación minera en Guerrero (Proceso, a 11 de julio de 2017)

Comunidad Me’Phaa de San Miguel del Progreso gana amparo contra Declaratoria de Libertad de Terrenos (Centro de derechos Humanos de la Montaña, a 11 de julio de 2017)

Otorgan amparo a comunidad me´phaa ante explotación minera (La Jornada, a 11 de julio de 2017)

For more information from SIPAZ:

Guerrero: San Miguel del Progreso exige resolución del amparo 429/2016 (24 de abril de 2017)

Guerrero: San Miguel del Progreso exige se determine inconstitucionalidad de Ley Minera (20 de mayo de 2016)

Guerrero: Comunidad indígena pide a la SCJN revisión de la Ley Minera (2 de julio de 2014)


Oaxaca: Campaign against SEZ Announced

July 4, 2017

SEZ.pngSpecial Economic Zones (@Proceso)

On June 22nd, during the forum “Special Economic Zones and Implications in Community Life and the Environment”, about 250 participants from 50 civil and social organizations expressed their rejection of “the implementation of the SEZs in the Isthmus of Tehuantepec, Oaxaca and elsewhere in the state.”

Participants pointed out that SEZs are intended to generate employment but through the implementation of mining, wind, and gas mega-projects, among others, which would end the communal life of indigenous peoples. Furthermore, they denounced that they promote extralegal and paramilitary violence and are the spearhead of the extractive and predatory industries that today are covered under the laws of the SEZs that benefit them.

They also pledged “to implement a massive campaign of counter information on SEZs and megaprojects, and to hold regional and state forums to strengthen the defense of our territories.”

For more information in Spanish: 

Anuncian campaña contra las ZEE (El Sol del Istmo, 28 de junio de 2017)

Advierten “nueva oleada de devastación” en Oaxaca con la creación de las Zonas Económicas Especiales (Proceso, 27 de junio de 2017)

Declaratoria del foro: “Zonas Economicas Especiales y las implicaciones en la vida comunitaria y al medio ambiente” (EDUCA, 26 de junio de 2017)

Con las Zonas Económicas Especiales se avista una nueva devastación para Oaxaca (Regeneración, 28 de junio de 2017)

El capital internacional y la élite política mexicana se ciernen sobre el territorio Oaxaqueño con avaricia, avidez y rapacidad (Activista, 28 de junio de 2017)

For more information from SIPAZ:

Nacional: El Senado aprueba la Ley Federal de Zonas Económicas Especiales (ZEE) (15 de abril de 2016)

México / Nacional: Diputados aprueban Ley Federal de Zonas Económicas Especiales (18 de diciembre 2015)

Oaxaca: comunidades del Istmo presentan amparo ante la ZEE (noviembre de 2016)


Chiapas: Zoque People Mobilizing against Mega-projects in Chiapas

July 3, 2017

Zoque1.pngThe movement declared itself against extractivist projects, “which put the social, environmental and cultural life of the 60,000 Zoque speakers at risk.” Photo: @Sipaz

On June 22nd, the indigenous movement of the Zoque Believing People in Defense of Life and the Earth organized a pilgrimage in Tuxtla Gutierrez, in which about six thousand people from 3 zones, members of civil society as well as priests of the Archdiocese of Tuxtla Gutierrez and the diocese of San Cristobal de Las Casas participated, according to La Jornada.

Participants denounced that the energy reform approved in 2013 along with ten other constitutional reforms “constitute a serious threat of dispossession of indigenous peoples’ lands”, as only their proponents would benefit from them.

In this case, the International Public Bidding known as Round 2.2 involves “the concession of 12 natural gas and oil extraction wells in the coastal states of the Gulf of Mexico and Southeastern Basin, which is composed of 12 blocks, two of which have an impact on the state of Chiapas. A total of 84,500 hectares of land in nine municipalities in northern Chiapas would be used for the extraction of natural gas through dispossession and environmental contamination of Zoque territory.”

Blocks 10 and 11 in Chiapas would affect the municipalities of Tecpatan, Francisco Leon, Ostuacan, the town of Chapultenango, Ixtacomitan, Ixtapangajoya, Pichucalco, Solosuchiapa, Sunuapa and even Teapa (Tabasco) in order to obtain moist gas, light oil and super light oil.

Zoque2.pngPhoto: @Sipaz

In March 2017, representatives of the movement reported a series of irregularities in the bidding process awarded by the Federal Government’s Energy Secretariat (SENER in its Spanish acronym), because all the affected communities were not consulted and there were no translators in their maternal Zoque language and neither has an Environmental Impact Statement been presented as required by law.

According to the movement, the specific risks would be “excessive use of water, migratory movements, contamination of soil, air and springs, loss of biodiversity, environmental imbalance, reduction of food production, damage to property and public health.”

 The movement stated that they are proceeding “to make the corresponding complaints before the national and international courts over omission in the absence of the presentation of the corresponding Environmental Impact Statement, as well as by the faults that are being committed in the process prior, free and informed consultation.”

Equally, the National Indigenous Congress (CNI in its Spanish acronym) said that “we salute the mobilization and organization undertaken from below for respect for what is theirs … to resist and to repudiate in an organized manner the so-called Round 2.2 on their ancestral territory with which the capitalists plan the extermination of the peoples of the north of Chiapas.”

Zoque3.pngPhoto: @Sipaz

For more information in Spanish:

Pagina facebook del movimiento

Comunidades zoques resisten a proyectos de despojo (Chiapas Denuncia, a 22 de Junio 2017)

Marchan 6 mil personas en Chiapas en rechazo a explotación de hidrocarburos (La Jornada, a 23 de Junio 2017)

“Alto al despojo, destrucción y muerte”: Pueblo Zoque ante Ronda 2.2 de la SENER que ofrece su territorio al mejor postor (Desinformémonos, a 23 de Junio 2017)

Pronunciamiento del Congreso Nacional Indígena en apoyo y solidaridad con la lucha del pueblo Zoque y por la libertad de Luis Fernando Sotelo (Enlace Zapatista, a 23 de Junio 2017)

For more information from SIPAZ:

Chiapas: machan ejidos y comunidades de la zona zoque contra los proyectos extractivos

Chiapas: Libre activista zoque, Silvia Juárez Juárez

Chiapas : denuncian criminalización de defensores de la Madre Tierra en zona zoque

Chiapas : comunidades zoques se oponen a extracción de hidrocarburos en el norte de Chiapas

 


National/International: REMA Questions Report of UN Working Group on Corporations and Human Rights in Mexico

June 28, 2017

REMA

In a statement published on June 19th, the Mexican Network of Workers Affected by Mining (REMA in its Spanish acronym) claimed that the report presented by the United Nations Working Group on Human Rights and Transnational Corporations after its visit to Mexico in September 2016 is “condescending”, “insulting”, “onerous” and “overlapping” government bodies.

REMA stated: “Certainly we did not expect a strong and categorical report that was in line with the very serious human rights violations that we have suffered in Mexico for several years, but we were surprised by such a level of diplomatic and condescending delicacy, overlooking repression and forgetting the disappeared, murdered and sick inhabitants, as well as to the ecosystems ruined by the companies and overlapped by the instances of government. In contrast, in their analysis it is practically concluded that the causes of this disaster are lack of consultation and non-alignment or, as they say, “harmonization” of laws.”

It claimed on the contrary: “Our denunciations and indications expressed the lack of respect of our right to the consent or not of their projects that seek the dispossession of our natural assets, but this does not mean that we were requesting the consultation from them as a solution, on the contrary, we emphasized that we have assumed what our constitution, the laws and international conventions and declarations say: the full exercise of our right to self-determination, therefore, we are the ones who are conducting our consultations, our assemblies, just to avoid that now, with fashion and the auspices of the guiding principles, these governments and companies violating rights, impose mechanisms and procedures as already happens in many countries, in addition to what has already been experienced in some places in our country.”

It indicated that the UN has “ceased to be a small hope for the people, while governments and companies are mocking their conclusions because they know that – even when fully applied – looting, dispossession, displacement of populations and the diversity of crimes inherent in all this will remain unpunished and legitimized because they fully complied with the recommendations of the UN Working Group.”

For all of the above, REMA concluded “THE PEOPLES AND MEMBERS OF REMA NEITHER NEED OR NEEDED OR REQIRED “APPROPRIATE MECHANISMS OF CONSULTATION”, BECAUSE WE OPPOSE THE IMPOSITION OF AN EXTRACTIVE MODEL THAT WORKS AGAINST LIFE. REMA DEMANDS TOTAL RESPECT FOR THE FREE DETERMINATION, AUTONOMY AND SELF-GOVERNMENT OF THE PEOPLES, ALL RECOGNIZED IN OUR MAGNA CARTA AND IN THE INTERNATIONAL TREATIES.”

 For more information in Spanish:

Informe del Grupo de Trabajo de la ONU sobre empresas y derechos humanos acerca de su misión a México (8 de junio de 2017)

Señalan en la ONU a empresas por atropellar los derechos humanos en México (Educa, 9 de junio de 2017)

COMUNICADO DE PRENSA “EL RELATO DE LOS RELATORES DE LA ONU” (REMA, 19 de junio de 2017)

Afectados por la minería cuestionan informe de relatores de la ONU (Contralínea, 19 de junio de 2017)

Informe de la ONU es “condescendiente” y “solapa” al gobierno: Red Mexicana de Afectados por la Minería (Desinformémonos, 20 de junio de 2017)

For more information from SIPAZ :

Nacional/Internacional: Organizaciones civiles llaman a tomar acciones urgentes ante informe del Grupo de Trabajo sobre Derechos Humanos y Empresas (14 de junio de 2017)

Nacional: Visita oficial del Grupo de Trabajo de la ONU sobre empresas y derechos humanos a México (21 de septiembre de 2016)