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)

Oaxaca: CEDHAPI Denounces “Extrajudicial Execution” of Indigenous Defender

December 6, 2019


At the beginning of December, the Center for Human Rights and Advice to Indigenous Peoples (CEDHAPI in its Spanish acronym) denounced the “extrajudicial execution” of the indigenous defender Catalino Barradas Santiago, at the hands of elements of the municipal police of Santos Reyes Nopala, on the eve of the elections for municipal president (by customary law) in that community.

The president of CEDHAPI, Maurilio Santiago Reyes, indicated that the events occurred on November 30th and that two people were also injured in the attack, while a third was arrested and imprisoned in the Puerto Escondido prison, of whom “it is known that he was tortured by the municipal police of Santos Reyes Nopala,” he said. He also stated that a group headed by the mayors of San Pedro Mixtepec and Santos Reyes Nopala, respectively, continues to intimidate opponents with weapons to maintain control of the municipality.

He finally said that on December 2nd, when the body of Barradas Santiago was being waked, a group of armed people went to shoot at the house where the wake was held.

Given what happened, the CEDHAPI requested the UN Working Group on Arbitrary Detention to issue an urgent action in the case of the detained person, and the Human Rights Ombudsman of Oaxaca and the Inter-American Commission on Human Rights, to issue precautionary measures. It also urged the State Attorney General’s Office (FGE in its Spanish acronym) to investigate the extrajudicial execution of the human rights defender, observer of the legality of the municipal president’s elections in Santos Reyes Nopala.

For more information in Spanish:

Denuncian “ejecución extrajudicial” de un defensor indígena cometida por la policía municipal de Santos Reyes Nopala (Página 3,mx, 5 de diciembre de 2019)

Denuncian “ejecución extrajudicial” de defensor indígena en Oaxaca (Proceso, 4 de diciembre de 2019)

Asesinado por policías (NVI Noticias, 4 de diciembre de 2019)

Policías municipales asesinan en Oaxaca al defensor indígena Barradas Santiago (Contralínea, 3 de diciembre de 2019)

For more information from SIPAZ:

Oaxaca: International Organizations Call for Release of Fredy Garcia of CODEDI (November 24, 2019)

Oaxaca/International: WOAT Warns about State Inaction in Disappearance Case of Ernesto Sernas Garcia (October 17, 2019)

Oaxaca: Murder Attempt on CODEDI Member (September 26, 2019)

Oaxaca: Denuncian criminalización por liberación de ordenes de aprensión contra sindicalistas del sector salud e integrantes de Sol Rojo (16 de agosto de 2019)

Oaxaca: International Organizations Call for Release of Fredy Garcia of CODEDI

November 24, 2019


On November 11th, Front Line Defenders expressed its “serious concern” over the arrest of Fredy Garcia Ramirez, a member of the Political Commission of the Committee for the Defense of Indigenous Rights (CODEDI in its Spanish acronym) on November 6th in Oaxaca City, charged for the crimes of injury, assault and theft. Frontline fears that these events “may be part of a broad strategy of intimidation and violence against indigenous and environmental rights defenders, and that the use of fabricated crimes has become an effective strategy to intimidate those who work with and for human rights in Oaxaca.” Therefore, it urged the authorities to “1. Withdraw the charges against Fredy Garcia and immediately release him from detention; 2. Initiate an immediate, thorough and impartial investigation into the crimes charged to human rights defender Fredy García, in order to guarantee his protection and release, publishing the results and bringing those responsible to justice in accordance with international standards. 3. Take all necessary measures to guarantee the protection of the members of CODEDI, guaranteeing their physical and psychological security and integrity; 4. Ensure that all human rights defenders, in carrying out their legitimate activities in defense of human rights, can operate freely without fear of restrictions or reprisals in Oaxaca and Mexico.”

The next day, the Observatory for the Protection of Human Rights Defenders, a joint program of the World Organization Against Torture (WOAT) and the FIDH, based in Geneva and Paris, published an “Urgent Call” on the arrest of the CODEDI spokesperson. It considers that “the attacks against Mr. Garcia Ramirez have happened in connection with the strong campaign of defamation and criminalization against CODEDI that began on October 7th, 2019 in which serious unfounded accusations were made trying to link CODEDI with the death of a State Investigation Agent in Oaxaca. The campaign has had extensive media coverage at the local and state levels.” It also denounced that “it is not an isolated incident, but is framed in a pattern of systematic attacks against CODEDI in the last 21 months, including five murders, two assassination attempts, six arbitrary detentions, three raid incidents and robbery, as well as permanent threats and the militarization of the area where the CODEDI training center is located.”

However, on the same day a judge decided send Fredy Garcia to trial with a precautionary measure of preventive detention for the crimes that were initially charged. CODEDI and social organizations held maintained a sit-in to demand his release decided called to rethink their strategies to fight the decision.

For more information in Spanish:

Vinculado a proceso vocero de la CODEDI (EL Imparcial de Oaxaca, 13 de noviembre de 2019)

Vinculan a proceso a vocero de Codedi (NVI Noticias, 13 de noviembre de 2019)

Juez vincula a proceso a Fredy García, vocero de CODEDI por delitos de lesiones, asalto y robo (Adn Sureste, 12 de noviembre de 2019)

Presionan para liberar a dirigente de CODEDI (EL Imparcial de Oaxaca, 12 de noviembre de 2019)

México: Detención arbitraria y criminalización en contra del portavoz del CODEDI Fredy García Ramírez (Llamado Urgente del Observatorio para la Protección de los Defensores de Derechos Humanos, 12 de noviembre de 219)

México: Fredy García, vocero de CODEDI, detenido (Frontline Defenders, 11 de noviembre de 2019)

Front Line denuncia detención de Fredy García, vocero de CODEDI (Ciudadanía Express, 12 de noviembre de 2019)

For more information form SIPAZ:

Oaxaca: denuncian detención arbitraria de Fredy García, integrante de CODEDI (7 de noviembre de 2019)

Oaxaca: Intento de asesinato a integrante de CODEDI (24 de septiembre de 2019)

Oaxaca: Denuncian detención arbitraria de un miembro de CODEDI (13 de febrero de 2019)

Oaxaca : CODEDI denuncia hostigamiento militar ; CNI exige que cese la represión en su contra (1 de noviembre de 2018)

Oaxaca: People Demand Payment of Social Programs During AMLO’s Tour of State

October 14, 2019


On October 6th, during a speech before 2,506 students from Huajuapan High School, Oaxaca, President Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador (AMLO) faced protests from the public present while referring to advances in various social programs. The president explained that, “they are going to arrive, justice takes time but arrives.” He added that, “if an authority is not popular there they are questioning and questioning the authority! We no longer have to be that way, there has to be unity,” requesting “don’t get us wrong, respect each other, I say it affectionately. It is not the same as before.” In the course of his public appearance, interruptions followed. In the end, AMLO declared that “we have to quench that hunger and thirst for justice, but we have to do it in an orderly manner, with a strategy, that this is what I ask, that you have patience with me and that there is understanding because first we are seeing to things generally, which includes and benefits more people.” Referring to promises of his campaign, he pointed out that, “we are going to root out corruption, it’s not just talk” and that “the Fourth Transformation is neither rhetoric nor demagogy.” In Huajuapan, 74 university-level students receive scholarships of 2,400 pesos per month and 176 young people, who neither work nor study, collaborate in workshops, receiving 3,600 pesos per month.

Before coming to Huajuapan, AMLO visited the community of the Santiago Juxtlahuaca Rural Hospital, also in Oaxaca. It is part of a tour of the 80 hospitals of IMSS Welfare throughout the country. During his visit he was accompanied by Zoe Robledo, the general director of the IMSS, and the Oaxaca governor, Alejandro Murat. There he announced his next visits: “Finishing the health tour, I will start a tour to talk to all the native peoples of Mexico, all cultures. For once, I won’t be going around with secrets, my heart is not a cellar, I always say what I think, if an agreement is reached between all the expressions of the Triqui culture, I start the tour in San Juan Copala (in Oaxaca). If there is an agreement, there we will sign a peace agreement that will be historic.” In addition, he called on people “to unite, no hatred, no resentment, and forgive … we have to forgive and embrace and love and be fraternal, become more and more human.”

For more information in Spanish:

Basta de ‘politiquerías’, pide AMLO en hospitales rurales de Oaxaca (La Jornada el 6 de octubre de 2019)

“¡No llegan!”: Reclaman a AMLO becas de Bienestar en Oaxaca (El Imparcial el 6 de octubre de 2019)

“Vayan respetándonos”, dice AMLO a pobladores de Oaxaca que lo cuestionaron por retraso en becas (Sin Embargo el 6 de octubre de 2019)

La 4T no es retórica, dice AMLO en Oaxaca (Noticias en la mira el 6 de octubre de 2019)

En Oaxaca, AMLO anuncia gira visitar a los pueblos indígenas (Expansión Política el 6 de octubre de 2019)

“No nos vamos a divorciar del pueblo”, afirma AMLO desde Oaxaca (El Heraldo el 6 de octubre de 2019)

Reclaman a AMLO falta de becas Bienestar en Oaxaca (Informador el 6 octubre de 2019)

For more information from SIPAZ:

National: AMLO Presents His First Government Report (September 10, 2019)

Oaxaca: de gira en el estado, AMLO declara que las comunidades indígenas avalan la realización del corredor transístmico (May 4, 2019)

Nacional: AMLO cumplió 100 días en el poder; revisa avances en compromisos (March 12, 2019)

Oaxaca/National: Federal Government Presents National Program for Indigenous Peoples (January 14, 2019)


National: Parents of 43 Ayotzinapa Student Teachers March in Mexico City, Numerous Protests Mark Fifth Anniversary of Disappearance

October 7, 2019

On the fifth anniversary of the disappearance of their children, parents of the 43 students of the Normal Rural School of Ayotzinapa disappeared in Iguala, Guerrero, in September 2014, held a peaceful demonstration in Mexico City and demanded results in the investigation of the case from the Mexican government. This same day they also spoke in the Chamber of Deputies, where they told their personal experiences, and highlighted the irregularities and the failure of government investigations and actions so far.

Cruz Mendoza, one of the parents, said: “This government that we have right now, I believe it is willing, although until now there have just been words and more words, because the case has not progressed much, as we would like it to. We will continue in this fight, walking, as for five years, that have been of suffering, tormented. It’s five years I don’t want to remember, I feel like it’s the first day. We don’t know anything about our children, where they are, what happened to them.”

Demonstrations were also held in other parts of the country. In Chiapas, students from the Jacinto Canek and Mactumatza schools held a march of around 500 people in Tuxtla Gutierrez. In Oaxaca, student teachers also demonstrated, while the Institute of Graphic Arts of Oaxaca (IAGO in its Spanish acronym) organized an exhibition of kites made by Francisco Toledo, in memory of the 43 victims.

In the activities in Mexico City, around one hundred people committed acts of vandalism, which damaged 30 businesses and public offices, and left two injured police officers. The parents of the 43 distanced themselves from these actions, emphasizing that they were the work of only a fraction of the more than 5,000 people who participated in the demonstrations in this City.

For his part, President Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador (AMLO) wore a shirt that the parents of the 43 gave him on the day, as an expression of his support. He reiterated his government’s commitment to establishing the truth about what happened.

For more information in Spanish:

‘Vamos a seguir en esta lucha, caminando, como desde hace 5 años’: padres de normalistas en marcha en CDMX Animal Político, 26 de septiembre de 2019.

Marchan en Oaxaca y Chiapas a cinco años de caso Ayotzinapa Milenio, 26 de septiembre de 2019.

Padres de desaparecidos de Ayotzinapa hablan en la Cámara de Diputados Oaxaca, 26 de septiembre de 2019.

Dañaron 30 inmuebles y lesionaron a dos policías en marcha de Ayotzinapa Milenio, 26 de septiembre de 2019.

En la mañanera, AMLO usa playera alusiva a Ayotzinapa Milenio, 26 de septiembre de 2019.

For more information from SIPAZ:

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)

Oaxaca: Abortion on Demand Approved

October 1, 2019


On September 25th, 2019, three days after the commemoration of the Day of Struggle for the Decriminalization and Legalization of Abortion, an initiative to reform the Penal Code as well as Article 12 of the Constitution was voted in order to specify that the protection of human life will go “from the moment it is considered a person” instead of from fertilization.

With 24 votes in favor the reform that will ensure the right of women to terminate their pregnancy before the 12th week without being criminalized was approved. The legislators who voted against were deputies of the PRI, of the Green Environmental Party of Mexico (PVEM), of the Social Encounter Party (PES), the only deputy of PAN and two members of MORENA. The reform will take effect next month.

With this Oaxaca became the second Mexican state to decriminalize abortion on demand. The first was Mexico City that passed that law 12 years ago.

In the context of the vote for the reform of the Criminal Code, the feminist civil organization ‘Consortium for Parliamentary Dialogue and Equity Oaxaca’ reported a case of harassment and vigilance against it. On the same day as the vote, “around 1 pm an unknown man left a backpack in front of the offices. On realizing that he had been seen, he recovered it, staying more than one hour and 30 minutes watching and harassing in front of the office,” it said.

In addition, protests were held by both religious groups against decriminalization and feminist groups in favor from early in the day. One of the main promoters of the reform, Hilda Graciela Perez Luis, deputy of MORENA, said that the decriminalization “[compensates] for the historical debt that democracy has with women”, because “women proclaim the sovereignty of our bodies” and “because abortion already exists.” She pointed out that according to official figures, 2,300 clandestine abortions are performed every year, but the authorities estimate that there is an additional dark figure of 7,000.

That contrasts with the 369 legal abortions that were carried out in Oaxaca for legal reasons such as rape, serious genetic or congenital alterations, recklessness or guilt and danger of death according to official data. Worldwide, 8-11% of maternal deaths are related to unsafe abortion and between January 2018 and August 12th, 2019, 50 maternal deaths were registered in Oaxaca, “[i.e.] abortion is the third leading cause of death in the state of Oaxaca, and the fourth in the whole of the rest of the country,” concluded Perez Luis.

Apart from maternal deaths due to unsafe abortion there are 20 cases in which women who have aborted have been imprisoned for this crime since 2016. Given these facts, Deputy Hilda Graciela Perez Luis said that “criminalization does not persuade them not to abort, the only thing that it achieves is putting health and life at risk.”

For more information in Spanish:

Información sobre pacientes atendidos en servicios de ILE en la Ciudad de México (ILE el 25 de julio de 2019)

Informe: La Pieza Faltante, Justicia Reproductiva (GIRE, 2018)

El aborto es ley en Oaxaca: “la maternidad será elegida o no será” (Proceso el 25 de septiembre de 2019)

Votarán el miércoles en Oaxaca despenalización del aborto (La Jornada el 24 de septiembre de 2019)

Hoy decide el Congreso de Oaxaca si se despenaliza el aborto (Educa Oaxaca el 25 de septiembre de 2019)

Ante votación para despenalizar el aborto, Consorcio denuncia hostigamiento (Educa Oaxaca el 26 de septiembre de 2019)

For more information from SIPAZ:

National: Supreme Court of Justice of the Nation Eases Abortion for Rape Victims (August 12, 2019)

National/International: Spotlight Initiative against Gender Violence Launched in Mexico (June 6, 2019)

Chiapas: denuncian grave incremento de la violencia feminicida en el primer bimestre de 2019 (February 18, 2019)

Chiapas: Tzeltal Women Tortured and Raped by Military in 1994 Denounce Total Impunity (June 9, 2019)

National/International: “Green Tide” – Activists March for Free and Safe Abortion; Threatened across Republic (October 9, 2018)

Oaxaca: Nine Femicides after 28 Days of Gender Violence Alert – Some Municipalities Yet to Implement Declaration (October 2, 2018)

Oaxaca: State Congress Approves Marriage Equality Bill

September 10, 2019


On August 27th, the local Congress of Oaxaca approved a reform of the Civil Code to legalize marriage and cohabitation between same-sex couples with 25 votes in favor and 10 votes against, while several deputies of the National Regeneration Movement (MORENA in its Spanish acronym) abstained or were absent during the vote.

This makes Oaxaca the nineteenth state that introduces marriage equality in its legislation. In addition to Mexico City, the states of Baja California Sur, Coahuila, Campeche, Colima, Hidalgo, Michoacan, Morelos, Nayarit, Quintana Roo and San Luis Potosí recognize this, while in Aguascalientes, Baja California, Chiapas, Chihuahua, Jalisco, Nuevo Leon, and Puebla same-sex couples need validation from the Court if they want to get married.

Until now, Article 143 of the Oaxaca Civil Code defined marriage as “one man and one woman” which aims to “perpetuate the species.” Now the reformed article says that, “marriage is the civil contract between two people, who come together to live a common life and provide respect, equality and mutual help.”

There had already been attempts to enable same-sex marriages before that reform. In August 2011, the requests of three homosexual couples were denied by the Civil Registry of Oaxaca, but in April of the following year, with the support of the civil organization Equaity Mexico (Mexico Igualitario), one of them achieved for the first time in all of Mexico a sentence allowing their marriage by court order without having to reform the constitution. Antonio Medina, national director of Sexual Diversity of the Aztec Sun (Diversidad Sexual del Sol Azteca) stressed that the reform of the Civil Code “was the result of the hard work of civil organizations that for several years did not stop insisting on achieving this goal.”

While the LGBTTTIQ + Oaxaqa community is celebrating the reform presented by deputies Hilda Perez Luis, Magaly Lopez Dominguez and deputy Noe Doroteo Castillejos as a great achievement, the State Confraternity of Christian Evangelical Pastors expressed their dissatisfaction with the decision. On the day of the vote, members of the evangelical community protested in front of Congress and demanded that the initiative be rejected.

Despite the protests, Alex Ali Mendez Diaz, president of the Equal Mexico organization, announced: “we will continue to fight for other rights that are still necessary to achieve the eradication of discrimination based on sex, sexual preference, among others.”

For more information in Spanish:

Oaxaca da luz verde al matrimonio igualitario (Proceso el 28 de agosto de 2019)

Aprueban en Oaxaca matrimonio igualitario; protestan evangélicos (La Jornada el 29 de agosto de 2019)

For more information from SIPAZ:

Chiapas: Organización defensora de la diversidad sexual recibe amenazas por su trabajo en el marco del Mes de Orgullo LGBTTTIQA+ (June 27th, 2019)

Chiapas: alto a la violencia homofóbica (May 17th, 2018)

National: Senate Agrees to Guarantee Equal Rights to Same-Sex Couples (November 12, 2018)

Nacional: Aprueba Senado garantizar igualdad de derechos para las parejas del mismo sexo (7 de noviembre de 2018)

Oaxaca: Mujer transgénero recibe su credencial de elector de una representación del INE (8 de agosto de 2017)