Mexico – National/International: Latest Amnesty International Report on the Deadly Return of Central American Asylum Seekers from Mexico

February 15, 2018

AI

Amnesty International (AI) denounced in its latest report “Ignored and Unprotected: The Deadly Return of Central American Asylum Seekers from Mexico” that the Mexican immigration authorities routinely force thousands of people from Honduras, El Salvador and Guatemala to return to their countries without taking into account the risks to their lives and safety when they return.

The report is based on a survey that reflects 500 experiences of Central American people traveling through Mexico. AI concluded that the National Institute of Migration (INM in its Spanish acronym) systematically violates the non-refoulement principle, a binding pillar of international and Mexican law that prohibits the return of people to situations where they are at real risk of persecution or other serious violations of human rights. “Instead of giving them the protection to which they are entitled, Mexico is illegally turning its back on these people in need”, said Erika Guevara-Rosas, Amnesty International’s director for the Americas.

Amnesty International found that 75% of the people detained by the INM had not been informed of their right to seek asylum in Mexico, despite the fact that Mexican law expressly provides that it be done and that the public authorities assured Amnesty International that this provision was observed.

For more information in Spanish:

Informe: Ignoradas y sin protección (Amnistía Internacional)

Cortometraje: A través de los ojos de una persona refugiada (Amnistía Internacional)

México envía a centroamericanos a la muerte, denuncia Amnistía Internacional (Sididh, 24 de enero de 2018)

México incumple ante migrantes: Amnistía Internacional; “es un área de oportunidad”, responde el INM (Proceso, 23 de enero 2018)

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International/National: Human Rights Watch Publishes Report on Human Rights Situation in Mexico and the World

February 4, 2018

Human Rights Watch

In its most recent report on the situation of human rights in the world, Human Rights Watch, an organization based in Washington, USA, highlighted the abuses of members of the armed forces, impunity in emblematic cases (as Tlatlaya and Ayotzinapa), the habitual use of torture, the Law of Internal Security and violence against defenders and journalists in the case of Mexico among other issues.

The document states that, “during the government of President Enrique Peña Nieto, which began in 2012, members of the security forces have been implicated in serious and repeated human rights violations -including extrajudicial executions, enforced disappearances, and torture- in the framework of actions against organized crime.” In addition, “the government has made little progress in the prosecution of those responsible for recent abuses, and even less in the large number of abuses committed by soldiers and police since former President Felipe Calderon began the “war on drug trafficking” in Mexico in 2006.”

Regarding forced disappearance, it indicated that “it is common for agents of the Public Prosecutor’s Office and police officers not to take basic investigative measures to identify those responsible for forced disappearances, and they often indicate to relatives of missing persons that they should investigate on their own. In general, the authorities have not identified remains or parts of human bodies found in different parts of the country, including clandestine graves”, despite the fact that “the federal government has promoted potentially promising initiatives to find people whose whereabouts are unknown.”

Regarding access to justice, the report emphasizes that “it is common for Mexico to torture detainees to obtain information and confessions. Torture is most frequently applied in the period between which the victims are detained, often arbitrarily, and until they are placed at the disposal of agents of the Public Ministry. During this time, victims are often held incommunicado in military bases or other illegal detention centers.” It also adds that “it is common for the criminal justice system not to provide justice to victims of violent crimes and human rights violations. This is due to reasons that include corruption, lack of training and sufficient resources, and the complicity of agents of the Public Prosecutor’s Office and public defenders with delinquents and abusive officials.”

For more information in Spanish:

Informe Mundial 2018 (Human Rights Watch, enero de 2018)

Human Rights Watch condena impunidad en abusos de fuerzas de seguridad en México (Proceso, 18 de enero de 2018)

Con Peña, “graves y reiteradas violaciones de derechos humanos”: HRW (Aristegui Noticias, 18 de enero de 2018)

Señalan impunidad en México (NVI Noticias, 19 de enero de 2018).

For more information from SIPAZ:

Nacional/Guerrero: Informes poco favorables sobre corrupción y derechos humanos en México (3 de febrero de 2016)


Chiapas: Preventative Prison for Three People from Chiapa de Corzo after EPN”S Visit

August 28, 2017

Chiapa.pngPhoto: @ Isain Mandujano

On August 7th, after Enrique Peña Nieto’s visit to Chiapa de Corzo on the occasion of “International Day of Indigenous Peoples”, seven federal police, six women and one man were beaten and detained by villagers for 6 hours, after which were released.

According to Proceso magazine, “One of the trucks of the local AVC company that transported federal police was destroyed in front of the municipal presidency. The young men ransacked the unit and riot gear pack came out of it. Helmets, vests, kneepads, shields and other accessories that were aboard the bus were distributed as war trophies. With their faces covered, the young people turned to a federal police with a bloodied face. They took him to the square where he was taunted by the crowd. He was then taken to one of the neighborhoods to put him with six more who were previously captured.”

Following these events, on Saturday, August 12th, agents of the Attorney General of the Republic’s Office (PGR) and the State Attorney General’s Office (FGE), began a search and arrested at least four people, allegedly involved in the riots on August 7th, “Although the state and federal governments were committed not to retaliate in exchange for the police being released – an event that happened around 2 of the morning of Tuesday 9th”, according to Proceso.

According to Meganoticias website, “The State Attorney General’s Office (FGE) reported that in the context of the initial hearing, the Control Judge determined that it was appropriate to impose the precautionary measure of preventive detention against three detainees resulting from the riots in the municipality of Chiapa de Corzo last August 7th.” Those three people remain imprisoned in the prison of “El Amate”.

It should be remembered that according to Aristegui Noticias: “From a day before their arrival, residents of Chiapa de Corzo expressed their rejection for the visit of the President and declared him a ‘persona non grata'”, where the Governor of Chiapas, Manuel Velasco Suarez, expressed his interest in replicating economic policy and in particular the Special Economic Zones to indigenous regions of Chiapas in his spech.

 For more information:

Pobladores retienen a siete policías federales tras visita de Peña a Chiapas (Proceso, 7 de agosto de 2017)

Detienen a presuntos instigadores de disturbios durante visita de Peña a Chiapa de Corzo. (Proceso, 13 de agosto de 2017)

Prisión preventiva a detenidos en Chiapa de Corzo. (Meganoticias, 14 de agosto de 2017)

For more information from SIPAZ:

Chiapas: Habitantes de Chiapa de Corzo rechazan visita de EPN en el Día Internacional de los Pueblos Indígenas. (SIPAZ, 8 de agosto de 2017)

México/Nacional: Diputados aprueban Ley Federal de Zonas Económicas Especiales. (SIPAZ, 18 de diciembre de 2017)

Chiapas : denuncian criminalización de defensores de la Madre Tierra en zona zoque. (SIPAZ, 1 de marzo de 2017)


Nacional/Oaxaca: German Coordination for Human Rights in Mexico

April 10, 2017

German.png

At the end of March, the German Coordination for Human Rights in Mexico, a network created in 2000 and composed of 15 German organizations and institutions, presented the main results of its observation mission in which they visited human rights defenders Enrique Guerrero Aviña (UNAM student) and Damian Gallardo Martinez (Oaxacan activist) imprisoned at CEFERESO No.2, in Jalisco. It stressed that, “it has known of these cases in which experts of the UN have pronounced for more than two years on the arbitrary nature of the arrest and in demand for their immediate freedom.” They reported that for this reason, the German Coordination has launched a campaign for their release.

 It denounced that, “it was informed of the hunger strike that began on March 6 in which more than half of the persons deprived of their liberty denounced the situation of cruel, inhuman treatment and torture in CEFERESO. The human defenders Damian Gallardo and Enrique Guerrero have denounced this situation on multiple occasions, promoting legal actions and protesting. The German Coordination firmly condemns any retaliation that may occur against both defenders for their legitimate work of denunciation and demand for rights in the prison.”

The German Coordination also denounced that “another element of particular seriousness was the confirmation that the cases of arbitrary detention of Damian Gallardo and Enrique Guerrero are not isolated cases, since the members of the mission could observe that there is a pattern of criminalization of defenders In Mexico, which is a worrying indicator of the deep human rights crisis in the country.”

For more information in Spanish:

Comunicado « Culmina Red Alemana por los Derechos Humanos en México misión en el país » (31 de marzo de 2017)

ONG alemana expresa ‘‘enorme preocupación por permanente violación a DH y pretensión de criminalizar protesta social” (Revolución 3.0, 31 de marzo de 2017)

Viola México derechos humanos: ONG alemana (La Jornada, 31 de marzo de 2017)

For more information from SIPAZ :

Oaxaca: Exigen liberación inmediata de Damián Gallardo (23 de diciembre de 2014)

Oaxaca: A 16 meses del encarcelamiento de Damián Gallardo, y tras llamamiento de la ONU, no hay respuesta del Estado mexicano (10 de octubre de 2014)

 


Chiapas: Zoque Activist, Silvia Juarez Juarez, Released

April 9, 2017

Zoque.pngSilvia Juarez Juarez (photo @OMCT)

On March 28th, Silvia Juarez Juarez, a community human rights defender and member of the Movement in Defense of Zoque Territory, was released having been held for 35 days. This movement has been developing a process of civil and peaceful resistance against exploration, extraction of hydrocarbons and mining projects in the municipality of Tecpaan, Chiapas and in the Zoque region. Silvia had been arrested on February 21st in Tuxtla Gutierrez on charges of mutiny, harassment and kidnapping – allegedly against municipal officials – in the framework of a protest in which she did not participate, on February 13th.

On March 28th, the head of the State Attorney General’s Office, Raciel Lopez Salazar, withdrew from the criminal action for the crimes that were charged “considering that the agent of the Public Prosecutor’s Office lacked elements to prove the aforementioned crimes.” Therefore, the activist was released from the State Center for Social Reinsertion of the Sentenced No. 14, El Amate, in the municipality Cintalapa de Figueroa.

Nevertheless, Silvia Juarez is still subject to prosecution, “with the obligation to sign before the Court every two weeks, because Judge Cesar Rodriguez Robles, Supervisory Judge, considered that there are elements to prove the crime of damages. Facing threats of risk to her integrity and repeated harassment against the defenders of Zoque territory, Silvia Juarez cannot return home with her family.”

It is also worth mentioning that on the day Silvia Juarez Juarez was released, “the municipal president of Tecpatan, Armando Pastrana Jimenez, filed for an injunction for the withdrawal of the PGJE to prevent the community defender from leaving prison” and also maintained his complaint against 29 other community defenders.

In a statement on the case, the Fray Bartolome de Las Casas Center for Human Rights (FRAYBA),  expressed concern that “despite changes in the criminal justice system, in Chiapas, practices of violations of judicial guarantees and judicial protection, including presumption of innocence, continue, which result in arbitrary deprivation of liberty.”

For more information in Spanish:

Libre activista zoque, tras desistimiento de denuncia de PGJ Chiapas (Proceso, 5 de abril de 2017)

Liberan a indígena zoque Silvia Juárez (Expreso Chiapas, 6 de abril de 2017)

Silvia Juárez Juárez, defensora del territorio, en libertad (Chiapas Paralelo, 6 de abril de 2017)

Libre Silvia Juárez, defensora zoque (Primera edición Chiapas, 5 de abril de 2017)

Condena el Frayba encarcelamiento de Silvia Juárez (El Heraldo de Chiapas, 5 de abril de 2017)

Luego de 35 días en prisión, la activista Silvia Juárez Juárez es liberada (Aqui Noticias, 6 de abril de 2017)

 For more information from SIPAZ:

Chiapas : denuncian criminalización de defensores de la Madre Tierra en zona zoque (1 de marzo de 2017)

Chiapas : comunidades zoques se oponen a extracción de hidrocarburos en el norte de Chiapas (20 de octubre de 2016)

Chiapas: Silvia Juárez Juárez anima a sus compañeros a seguir en la defensa de la tierra desde la cárcel (27 de marzo de 2017)

 


Chiapas: Emilio Jimenez Gomez, Prisoner from San Sebastian Bachajon, Released

March 26, 2017

PresosLogo @: VivaBachajon WordPress

On March 16, Emilio Jimenez Gomez, an ejidatario from San Sebastian Bachajon and adherent to the Sixth Declaration of the Lacandon Jungle (the Sixth), was released from prison. He was imprisoned in Playas de Catazaja, Chiapas (CERSS # 17) for two years and eight months.

According to the “No Estamos Todxs” working group, “he was identified by PRI members from the Xanil community for an assault on a foreigner but the same foreigner said that the compañero was not the person who assaulted him. The PRI took him prisoner to Playas de Catazaja with the complicity of the preventative state police.” Likewise, the adherents to the Sixth of San Sebastian Bachajon, in their last statement, assured that Emilio Jimenez Gomez had been arrested for fight against dispossession in the Agua Azul Waterfalls.

In the same statement, they recalled that two other ejidatarios were still “kidnapped by the state”, Esteban Gomez Jimenez, prisoner in San Cristobal de Las Casas, Chiapas, (CERSS # 5) and Santiago Moreno Perez, prisoner in Playas de Catazaja, Chiapas (CERSS # 17). They denounced that they were also arrested “in an arbitrary manner, for defending their natural resources…for raising their voices and defending life and territory.”

For more information in Spanish:

Libre uno de tres ejidatarios, que luchan contra el despojo en Cascadas de Agua Azul, Bachajón, Chiapas (VivaBachajon WordPress, 18 de marzo de 2018)
Emilio Jiménez Gómez (Grupo de trabajo « No estamos todxs »)

 


National: CNI Denounces that “The War against its Peoples” Continues

March 14, 2017

CNI.pngPhoto @ SipazOn

March 9, the National Indigenous Congress (CNI) published a communiqué denouncing that while they continue to organize themselves towards “the formation of an Indigenous Council of Government (…) the dispossession and repression from the bad governments on its three levels continues to act against our Mother Earth, our peoples and our autonomous organizations. “

 The CNI again gives various examples of repression being suffered by indigenous peoples, among others, the acts of violence that occurred in the state of Oaxaca against the community of San Francisco del Mar, Tehuantepec Isthmus region “to impose the approval of wind projects involving the dispossession of an important part of common land of this community and would seriously affect its rich and delicate ecosystem.” This region is a vital place for thousands of fishermen and fishing is the source of food for the entire population. “If the project was approved, it would mean taking away their right to their source of life and livelihood.” The CNI stated that, “this is an integral plan of dispossession of the territories of the communities of the Isthmus to fulfill the megaprojects they intend to impose in the region with the so-called Tehuantepec Isthmus Special Economic Zone (SEZ).”

It also lashed out against the armed forces of “bad government that have acted in unison with the criminal gangs and particularly against the indigenous community of Santa María Ostula” in the state of Michoacan, where 34 comuneros have been killed and at least 5 are disappeared. It again demanded “the punishment of the responsible military and politicians, the cancellation of arrest warrants against Ostula commanders and the Sierra Costa region, the presentation of the disappeared alive, and absolute respect for the communal territory of Ostula.”

Finally, the CNI demanded the immediate release of the unjustly imprisoned indigenous ñhañhú Raymundo Pascual Garcia, originally from San Ildefonso, Amealco, in the state of Queretaro, who was arrested for participating with his community in the mobilizations against the “gasolinazo“.

 For more information in Spanish:

Comunicado del Congreso Nacional Indígena del 9 de marzo de 2017 (Enlace Zapatista, 9 de marzo de 2017)

Pescadores rechazan proyecto eólico en San Francisco del Mar (Istmo Press, 7 de marzo de 2017)

Comunicado “Una historia para tratar de Entender (Enlace Zapatista, , 17 de noviembre de 2016)

Lo importante es la insumisión, no ganar la presidencia con candidata indígena: EZLN (Proceso, 17 de noviembre de 2016)

For more information from SIPAZ:

Chiapas/Nacional : Candidata presidencial “no es decisión de una persona” (Subcomandante Moíses) (15 de noviembre de 2016)

Chiapas /Nacional: Polémica después de la propuesta planteada por el EZLN y el CNI en octubre (24 de octubre de 2016)

Chiapas / Nacional : CNI y EZLN realizarán consulta para nombrar a una candidata indígena hacia las elecciones presidenciales de 2018 (15 de octubre de 2016)