Guerrero: Release of 19 Political Prisoners Requested

January 17, 2019

Prisoners.pngPhoto @ Sur de Acapulco

On January 8th, the Governor of Guerrero, Hector Astudillo Flores, received relatives of the alleged victims of the confrontation that occurred on January 7th, 2018 in La Concepcion, municipality of Acapulco, to review the investigative files of “the 19 political prisoners in Guerrero members of the Council of Ejidos and Communities Opposed to La Parota Dam – CECOP and the Community Police of the Regional Coordinator of Community Authorities – CRAC-PC.” The relatives were accompanied by lawyers from La Montaña Tlachinollan Center for Human Rights, the Jose Maria Morelos y Pavon Regional Center for Human Rights (Centro Morelos) and the Movement for the Freedom of Political Prisoners. They demanded that the state government release the prisoners but according to Sur de Acapulco the Governor of Guerrero responded that “the FGE, the TSJ, the lawyers and the defense are doing their job and they have to wait.”

After the meeting at a press conference, former prisoner Arturo Campos warned that they also demanded the freedom of the displaced person from Laguna, prisoner in Coyuca de Catalan, Gildardo Diaz Perez.

The meeting was a follow-up to a negotiating table, which took place on December 29th, between a commission of wives of the political prisoners of the CECOP, social organizations, Tlachinollan and the Governor in Casa Guerrero, Chilpancingo. The meeting had initially been scheduled the previous day, December 28th, when social organizations, community police of the CRAC-PC, students and the CECOP, blocked the Sol highway to demand the release of political prisoners detained in January 2017.

The Mexican Movement of Affected by Dams and in Defense of the Rivers (MAPDER in its Spanish acronym), also expressed in an open letter its concern about the current situation of the “19 political prisoners (…) who have not been released as publicly promised Federal government.”

For more information in Spanish:

CARTA ABIERTA | MAPDER DEMANDA LA LIBERTAD DE PRESOS OPOSITORES A LA PRESA LA PAROTA (MAPDER, 28 de diciembre de 2018)

Familiares de presos del Cecop se reúnen con el gobernador y le piden su libertad (El Sur de Acapulco, 9 de enero de 2019)

Demandan la liberación de 19 presos políticos de Guerrero (La Jornada, 28 de diciembre de 2018)

For more information from SIPAZ:

Oaxaca/Guerrero/National: Political Prisoners, Teachers and Activists Freed. Others Awaiting Rulings on their Cases (January 14th, 2019)

Guerrero / National: Nestora Salgado announces campaign for the freedom of political prisoners  (September 16th, 2018)

 

 

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Oaxaca/Guerrero/National: Political Prisoners, Teachers and Activists Freed. Others Awaiting Rulings on their Cases

January 14, 2019

prisoners

On December 28th, 12 political prisoners were released, mainly teachers attached to the National Coordination of Education Workers (CNTE in its Spanish acronym) and activists. The spokesperson for Section 22 of Oaxaca, Wilber Santiago, declared that this act signifies a triumph for the CNTE, since the teachers were fighting for more than five years for their freedom.

The people who were released are: Leonel Manzano, Sara Altamirano, Mario Olivera Osorio, Lauro Atilano Grijalbo Villalobos, Luis Gutierrez Saldivar, David Vargas Araujo, Alejandra Chavez Chavez, Alejandro Sandoval Martinez, Faustino Diego, Alberto Sandoval Rodriguez, Jose Ambrosio Martinez and Enrique Warrior Aviña.

“We thank the members of the new Government who knew how to keep the promise given to the democratic teachers’ movement”, the ex-prisoners said. The secretary general of Section 22 of the CNTE, Eloy Lopez, said for his part that, “today is not a celebration, it is a struggle and protest to demand the release of all political prisoners in the country who are still behind bars as hostages of an authoritarian policy that was implemented by Enrique Peña Nieto.”

His release was celebrated by the senator from Morena, Nestora Salgado, who on December 14th gave the Secretariat of the Interior (SEGOB in its Spanish acronym) a list of 199 cases of detainees that she considers “political prisoners” (180 men and 19 women), and who seek to benefit from an eventual amnesty law.

On December 28th, members of the Movement for the Freedom of Political Prisoners from the state of Guerrero demanded the release of 19 members of the Council of Ejidos and Communities Opposed to the La Parota Dam (CECOP in its Spanish acronym) and the Community Police of the Regional Coordinator of Community Authorities (CRAC in its Spanish acronym), who claim they are imprisoned unjustly, without evidence and imputed fabricated crimes. Kenya Hernandez, a member of the movement, said that in meetings with officials of the Ministry of the Interior (SRGOB) they were informed that the process will be slow, as the amnesty law is in progress.

It should be explained that some people do not want to be released through an amnesty law but to be cleared of the crimes that have been imputed to them.

For more information in Spanish:

Agradecen presos políticos de CNTE libertad a AMLO (El Imparcial de Oaxaca, 30 de diciembre de 2018)

Maestros que fueran presos políticos son liberados por AMLO; “Agradecemos a los integrantes del nuevo Gobierno que supieron cumplir la palabra dada al movimiento democrático magisterial”: Leonel Manzano (Revolución 3.0, 30 de diciembre de 2018)

Liberan a 12 presos políticos ligados a la CNTE; aquí algunos casos que se revisarán para amnistía (Animal Político, 29 de diciembre de 2018)

Exigen liberación de 19 presos políticos de Guerrero (Regeneración, 28 de diciembre de 2018)

AMLO va por la liberación de indígenas y maestros: se da a conocer la primera lista con 25 presos políticos que serán sujetos de amnistía (Revolución 3,0, 27 de diciembre de 2018)

For more information from SIPAZ:

Guerrero / National: Nestora Salgado announces campaign for the freedom of political prisoners (September 16th, 2018)

 


Chiapas: Voice of Amate Supporter Moved to High Security Prison

November 27, 2018

amatePilgrimage for the release of prisoners, 2016 (@SIPAZ)

On November 15th, Alejandro Diaz Santiz, a supporter of The Voice of Amate group and adherent of the Sixth Declaration of the Lacandon Jungle, was transferred from the San Cristobal de Las Casas jail to the federal maximum security prison located in Villa Comaltitlan.

A prisoner for 19 years for the crime of homicide, this transfer is because he has been demanding his release and better care in San Cristobal prison, according to his former fellow prisoner, Alberto Patishtan Gomez, who was pardoned in 2013 by President Enrique Peña Nieto. He affirmed in a press conference that “We did not expect this to be done to compañero Alejandro, because just in December he had been returned after almost two years of punishment [in the same place], because he has always fought for his freedom and rights, and for denouncing mistreatment in the prison.” Patishtan Gomez demanded the dismissal of Candelaria Jimenez, currently director of the San Cristobal prison, “because not only has Alejandro been treated badly, he has done the same to others; the prisoners do not denounce for fear of transfers.”

For more information in Spanish:

Los Solidarios de la Voz del Amate exigen el regreso de Alejandro Díaz Santis al CERSS número 5 (Solidarios de la Voz del Amate, 16 de noviembre de 2018)

Previo a su salida, Velasco Coello nuevamente encarcela a indígena tsotsil, en penal de máxima seguridad (Radio Pozol, 16 de noviembre de 2018)

Traslado arbitrario de nuestro compañero Alejandro Díaz Santis (Grupo de Trabajo No estamos Todos, 15 de noviembre de 2018)

Chiapas: trasladan a activista a penal de máxima seguridad (La Jornada, 15 de noviembre de 2018)

Denuncian malos tratos en el penal de San Cristóbal y traslao de presos (Gaby Coutiño – Periodistmo en libertad, 15 de noviembre de 2018)

For more information from SIPAZ:

Chiapas : Roberto Paciencia Cruz, ex injustamente preso llama a la solidaridad con Alejandro Díaz Santíz (September 14th, 2017)

Chiapas: Alejandro Diaz Santiz Reiterates His Demand for Freedom (September 12th, 2016)

Chiapas: Alejandro Diaz Santiz Reports Mistreatment of Prisoners (June 8th, 2016)

Chiapas: Alejandro Diaz Santiz Fasts to Mark 17 Years in Prison (May 14th, 2016)

Chiapas: Day of Action for the Liberation of Alejandro Diaz Santiz and Political Prisoners (April 23rd, 2016)

Chiapas: Calls for release of Alejandro Diaz Santiz (March 19th, 2016)

Chiapas: Alejandro Díaz Sántiz and 386 other prisoners transferred to high-security prison (October 8th, 2015)


Oaxaca: 22 Members of Sol Rojo (Red Sun) Released

November 14, 2018

Sol Rojo.pngPress conference of the Coordination for the Release of Criminalized Defenders in Oaxaca (@Consorcio)

In a statement published on November 6th, the Coordination for the Release of Criminalized Defenders of Oaxaca reported that “after more than three years of facing a judicial process with serious violations of due process, torture and incommunicado detention, 22 members of the organization Corriente del Pueblo Sol Rojo [Current of the Red Sun People] were freed from criminal case 30/2015 in which they were accused of terrorism and carrying a weapon (molotov cocktail). This freedom was given in resolution of the incident promoted in August by the lawyer and defender Ernesto Sernas, rejecting a series of tests used by the Attorney General of the Republic’s office. It should be recalled that these people were arbitrarily arrested on June 7th, 2015 in retaliation for their participation in a peaceful demonstration called by Section 22 of the Oaxacan teachers in the context of the elections on the same day. Their trial was at all times plagued by serious irregularities; also the members of Sol Rojo suffered torture during their detention, as well as during transfers and arrivals in prisons. This torture has left serious consequences on physical and emotional levels.”

The Coordination stressed that with this decision – in which it was observed “action on political direction on the part of the Attorney General of the Republic, when imputing crimes that they never committed in coordination with federal and state police bodies” is evidenced once again the “policy of criminalization” of Enrique Peña Nieto against human rights defenders, the “serious pattern of criminalization in Oaxaca” and the urgency that all these serious violations be punished promptly and in accordance with the law.

It also demanded the presentation of the defender Ernesto Sernas who is missing, since last May 10th for reasons that they believe have to do with his defense work in favor of the organization Sol Rojo, in the context that so far “there has been no progress in the investigations to find his whereabouts.”

It reaffirmed its position in favor of the liberation of all the defenders of Oaxaca who remain unjustly in prison as “reprisal” for their legitimate defense work. It also urged the authorities to act against the high risk in which members of Sol Rojo remain who have suffered serious and permanent attacks.

For more information in Spanish:

Defensores de DH integrantes de la organización Sol Rojo en libertad mediante sentencia absolutoria, luego de tres años de proceso judicial (Coordinación para la Libertad de Personas Defensoras Criminalizadas en Oaxaca, 6 de noviembre de 2018)

22 presos políticos de Sol Rojo fueron puestos en libertad (Libertad Oaxaca, 6 de noviembre de 2018)

Dejan en libertad a 22 presos políticos en Oaxaca (Siete Días Oaxaca, 6 de noviembre de 2018)

Anuncian la liberación de 22 activistas de Oaxaca presos por delitos federales (Despertar de Oaxaca, 7 de noviembre de 2018)

For more information from SIPAZ:

Guerrero / National: Nestora Salgado announces campaign for the freedom of political prisoners  (September 16th, 2018)

Oaxaca : Exigen atención para 33 personas defensoras de derechos humanos bajo procesos judiciales (3 de agosto de 2018)


Guerrero: national and international organizations visit prisoners of the CECOP and the CRAC-PC

October 10, 2018
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Press Conference at the Las Cruces prison (@La Jornada de Guerreo)

On October 5, members of Services and consultancies for peace (Serapaz), in representation of the Space of Civil Society Organizations for the Protection of Human Rights Defenders and Journalists (Espacio OSC), and the International Service for Peace (SIPAZ) visited 16 of the 18 prisoners of the Council of Ejidos and Communities Opposed to the La Parota Dam (Cecop) and the Regional Coordinator of Community Authorities – Community Police (CRAC PC), held in the prison of Las Cruces, in Acapulco, since January 7. They were accompanied by the Tlachinollan Human Rights Center, which has assumed the defense of said prisoners.

At a press conference outside the prison after the visit, Alberto Solís Castro, director of Serapaz stated that the struggle that has led the Cecop has been emblematic for the country: they have resisted for more than 12 years the onslaught of different governments and faced unfair situations and repressions. What we are seeing is a new effort to criminalize them, to stop them and attack them, because they fight for the land, because they oppose a dam megaproject that would end the environment and a good part of community life in the region”. He reported that they will issue a recommendation to the state government to release the prisoners and stressed that at least eight cases of torture during detention were documented. The complaints on those case have not been addressed, despite visits by representatives of state and national human rights organizations. He announced that next week they will report this situation to the person that will be in charge of the Institute of Indigenous Peoples, Adelfo Regino; to the next head of the Welfare Ministry, as well as to Senators Félix Salgado Macedonio and Nestora Salgado García.

Tommy Van Straten, member of Sipaz, indicated that as an international organization with a presence in Guerrero since 2005, they are concerned about the mistreatment of the detainees. He said that in this visit they documented the cases of torture inside the jail and the differential treatment the prisonners have received, including the isolation of the rest of the prison population. He also highlighted the situation and traumas of the prisoners’ relatives.

For his part, Rogelio Téliz García, Tlachinollan’s lawyer, said that the defense process is progressing, that there will be a new hearing on October 26 where the prisonners are expected to be released, such as a group of eight community members already was. He pointed out that there are 50 arrest warrants against the same number of community members in Cacahuatepec who, he said, are being persecuted by the government. He said that this happens despite the fact that the Crac-PC is protected by Law 701.

For more information (in Spanish):

Visitan ONG a los presos del Cecop; documentan 8 casos de tortura (El Sur, 5 de octubre de 2018)

Documentan ONG 8 casos de tortura a presos del Cecop en Acapulco (Quadartín, 5 de octubre de 2018)
Visitan activistas a los presos del Cecop en la cárcel de Las Cruces (El Sur, 6 de octubre de 2018)

Visita una ONG internacional a miembros del Cecop y de la Crac (La Jornada de Guerrero, 6 de octubre de 2018)

Visita SIPAZ a los presos del Cecop y la CRAC PC (La Plaza, 6 de octubre de 2018)

For more information from SIPAZ :

Guerrero: 50 arrest warrants against members of CECOP (September 24, 2018)

Guerrero: 9 of the 25 detainees for a confrontation in La Concepción in January are released September 17, 2018

Guerrero: Judge Orders Guarantees for Rights to Water, Health and Dignified Treatment for 25 CECOP Prisoners April 24, 2018

Guerrero: Extrajudicial Executions and Arrests of Community Police and Members of CECOP January 22, 2018


National: presentation of the seventh report “Defending Human Rights: The six-years term of impunity”

September 17, 2018
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Presentation of the seventh report “Defending Human Rights” (@Comité Cerezo)


On August 21, the seventh report “Defending Human Rights in Mexico: The six-years term of impunity” elaborated by Urgent Action for Human Rights Defenders (ACUDDEH), the Cerezo Committee and the Campaign against Enforced Disappearance was presented publicly. It covers the period from June 2017 to May 2018.

This report states that during the government of Enrique Peña Nieto (EPN) there have been 5527 attacks against human rights defenders and journalists; 949 of those cases were documented in this last period. It also states that « the largest number of cases registered are related to the opposition against the implementation of the structural reforms, particularly the people who defend the right to education were the most aggressed (224 cases); in second place were activists and people that demostrated in the streets; that is, those who exercised their human right to protest (219 cases) ». It also documents that “in this six-years term the major repression occurred in the states of Michoacán, Guerrero and Chiapas, states that, while suffering from high poverty rates, also have a long history of organizing to defend their human rights.”

The report also analyzes that after the Ayotzinapa case (2014), « the forced disappearance of human rights defenders or journalists implied a high political cost to the government to make it a widespread practice, so it was only used selectively against leaders or founders of indigenous, social or human rights movements, with which the case numbers are lower; however, this had a counterpoint : the Mexican government used extrajudicial execution to silence dissenting voices ». It highlights that the cases of forced disappearance increased by two times those of the previous six-year term.

It adds that “the cases of political imprisonment in Mexico are not unconnected or isolated facts, […], but they respond, in their vast majority, and are part of a mechanism of the strategy of political repression of the Mexican State to limit, dismantle and / or destroy, in practice, the human right to protest”. The organizations that wrote the report propose that within the national reconciliation proposed by the future government of Andrés Manuel López Obrador (AMLO) there might be an amnesty for this type of cases “that is, as a power of the president to “erase” the charges that are raised against these persons so thay they might obtain their freedom, as well as to eliminate the criminal record of those who have already served their sentence so that they might work or avoid being arrested for “recidivism”. An other option is to eliminate the cases that remain open as a silent threat to be able at any time to reactivate criminal proceedings, a situation thats wear down families and organizations and force them to stop demonstrating or compel them to give up from the defense of their rights”.

For more information (in Spanish):

Boletín de prensa Defender los Derechos Humanos en México: El Sexenio de la Impunidad (JUNIO DE 2017 A MAYO DE 2018) (Comité Cerezo, 25 de agosto de 2018)

Informe completo (Comité Cerezo, 25 de agosto de 2018)

México entre los países más peligrosos para defensores de derechos humanos (Vanguardia, 25 de agosto de 2018)

Una larga deuda: 5527 agresiones contra activistas y periodistas y el sexenio aún no concluye (Comité Cerezo, 28 de agosto de 2018)

For more information from SIPAZ:

National: Cerezo Committee Demands Amnesty, Truth Commissions and Protection of Defenders and Journalists from AMLO August 2, 2018


Guerrero: Nine of 25 Detainees from Confrontation in La Concepción in January Released

September 17, 2018
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Detentions in La Concepción, January 2018 (@Tlachinollan)


On August 24, nine of the 25 detainees arrested on January 7, after a confrontation that left 11 dead and 38 arrested in the community of La Concepción were released.

Among those released are four members of the Council of Ejidos and Communities Opposed to the La Parota dam (Cecop), three community police and two people who were in the process of reeducation and do not belong to any organization.

After the initial hearing, 13 of the 38 detainees had already been released while 25 of them were to be prosecuted, 16 of them community police.

Vidulfo Rosales, lawyer for the Tlachinollan Human Rights Center, explained that evidence was presented that the detainees were tortured, “that the sodium rhodizonate test is not conclusive since a lack of certainty may exist and it was done without the presence of their defenders, which is a requirement within the new accusatory criminal system. In addition to that there was coercion for them to accept that the weapons presented were theirs and the presentation of the detainees was late”, explained El Sur. However, the criterion that was used to free the detainees was the fact that “the witnesses do not point them out (…) so they could not be linked to the accusation“.

Another detainee of those who should have been freed did not leave the prison because he is facing another process.

For more information (in Spanish) :

Liberan a 9 de los 25 detenidos tras el enfrentamiento en La Concepción (El Sur, 24 de agosto de 2018)

For more information from SIPAZ:

Guerrero: Judge Orders Guarantees for Rights to Water, Health and Dignified Treatment for 25 CECOP Prisoners April 24, 2018

Guerrero: Extrajudicial Executions and Arrests of Community Police and Members of CECOP January 22, 2018