Chiapas: The Shulvó displaced begin an indefinite sit-in demanding justice and return

February 12, 2016

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Sit-in in Cathedral Square (@ Centro de medios libres)

Since February 4, nine Tsotsil indigenous families from the community of Shulvó, Zinacantan, adherents of the Sixth Declaration of the Lacandon Jungle, have staged a sit-in in Cathedral Square in San Cristobal de Las Casas. Since December 9, 2015, they have been displaced by “PRI paramilitary-style groups”, and they demand their return. On the night of February 5, they initiated a negotiating table at the diocesan seat, under the mediation of Friar Gonzalo Ituarte, with the participation of the Shulvó displaced, the PRI supporters who have been identified as the material authors of the displacement, the mayor of Zinacantan, and a representative of the Chiapas state government. As a result, they are going to look at the possibility of the return of the nine families for February 24. “The municipal and state authorities did not question the mechanism or the date, although violent forced displacement is illegal in the light of international agreements signed by Mexico concerning human rights in general and forced displacement in particular,” the displaced commented.

Two days before they gave a press conference, in which they aired their concerns “in the face of the intense vigilance directed at the sit-in, which is becoming harassment by uniformed and plain-clothes policemen, and also people in jackets and vests that identify them as municipal employees.” After a march in the city, they read a statement in which they announced that they would stage “an indefinite sit-in until the return of the displaced families, the punishment of those responsible and payment of damages. we come to denounce the harassment, intimidation and aggression since November 3, which resulted in the forced displacement on December 9, 2015,” the displaced families recalled.

It is noteworthy that currently there are also organzations staging sit-ins in Cathedral Square, including the Emiliano Zapata Campesino Organization form the Carranza Region (Organización Campesina Emiliano Zapata Región Carranza – OCEZ RC), who have been demanding a response from the state authorities to a series of agrarian, social and productive projects for a number of decades “that haven’t been met.” Six ex-prisoners and their families, supporters of The Voice of Amate (La Voz del Amate), ended their sit-in, which had been in place since last Thursday, after signing an agreement with the state authorities for damages caused by their “unjust imprisonment”, as well as the facilitation of the release of Alejandro Diaz santiz and Roberto Paciencia Cruz.

For more information in Spanish

Desplazados de Shulvó adherentes a La Sexta en alerta ante eventual desalojo del plantón en San Cristóbal de las Casas (Centro de medios libre, 9 de febrero de 2016)

Priístas contra adherentes a La Sexta de Shulvó, Zinacantán: Nosotros no los desplazamos, pero no pueden regresar (Centro de medios libre, 7 de febrero de 2016)

Levantan ex reos indígenas plantón en la Plaza Catedral de San Cristóbal (La Jornada, 7 de febrero de 2016)

Desplazados de Xulvó adherentes a la Sexta inician plantón indefnido en exigencia de justicia y retorno (Radio Zapatista, 5 de febrero de 2016)

Campesinos de la OCEZ inician plantón en San Cristóbal (Quadratín Chiapas, 1 de febrero de 2016)

For more information from SIPAZ

Chiapas: Toman acuerdo Solidarios de la Voz del Amate para liberación de presos y reparación del daño (9 de febrero de 2016)

Chiapas: Jornada por la liberación de Alejandro Díaz Sántiz y Mumia Abu-Jamal (9 de noviembre de 2015)

Chiapas: Preso de San Cristóbal, Roberto Paciencia, denuncia que le fabricaron su delito (28 de agosto de 2015)

Chiapas: OCEZ RC levanta plantón que mantenía en San Cristóbal (11 de abril de 2014)

Chiapas: Disputa por tierra entre OCEZ-RC y Comunidad organizada de Candelario El Alto (30 de octubre de 2012)

 


National: Civil society organizations express doubts about initiative for Law against Torture

February 11, 2016

Torture.pngPress conference Photo @ Luis Barrón, SinEmbargo

On February 3, some 30 civil society organizations, such as the Mexican Commission for the Defense and Promotion of Human Rights (Comisión Mexicana de Defensa y Promoción de los Derechos Humanos – CMDPDH), the Collective against Torture and Impunity (Colectivo Contra la Tortura y la Impunidad), and the Miguel Agustin Pro Juarez Centre for Human Rights (Centro de Derechos Humanos Miguel Agustín Pro Juárez – Centro Prodh), shared their indignation at a press conference over the initiative for the Law against Torture. They called on the Legislative Executive to pass legislation against torture that meets international standards and showed that, on December 10, 2015, Enrique Peña Nieto, “President of the Republic, sent his initiative to the Senate without consulting the organizations, which, apart from not knowing a range of minimum contents that this law should have, incorporates judicial norms that promote the torture commission, and establishes policies that impede its efficient investigation.” His proposal “does not reflect the requirements for the true eradication of this practice“, the organizations indicated. For example, it does not include the Istanbul Protocol, an international manual for the investigation and documentation of torture, nor does it forbid the use of illicit evidence obtained under torture. In October 2015, the government carried out a series of consultations in a process of dialogue with civil society organizations, as well as academics and social agents, and agreements were reached about the standards a General Law against Torture should contain. According to the organizations, “the proposals of civil society and the academic sector are not included in their entirety” in the final text.

Among others, the Committee against Torture and the Special Envoy against torture and other cruel, inhumane and degrading punishments and treatments, both from the United Nations, have declared the practice of torture in Mexico as being systematic and generalized. “Torture has been used by the Mexican State for a long period of time to obtain information, confessions, to punish, sexually violate and break the personality of thousands of people who live in or are in transit through Mexico.” The coordinator of CMDPDH, Jose Antonio Guevara, recalled that between 2006 and 2014, the National Commission for Human Rights (Comisión Nacional de los Derechos Humanos – CNDH) received some 100 complaints about torture and 4,000 for cruel, inhumane or degrading treatment, while in state commissions there are some 4,500 outstanding cases. Prior to the imminent start of the legislative work of the current sitting of government, the organizations called on the Legislative Executive to “take into account the observations and reports made by civil society organizations, academic groups and experts on these issues and that they approve legislation in line with international standards as regards the prohibition of torture and cruel, inhumane and degrading treatment and punishment that would permit the generalized practice of torture and impunity that prevails in the country to be prevented.”

For more information in Spanish:

Ley general contra la tortura (La Jornada, 6 de febrero de 2016)

EPN no tomó en cuenta a las ONG al enviar iniciativa de ley sobre tortura (Diario Cambio, 5 de febrero de 2016)

La iniciativa de Ley contra la Tortura promueve …aún más tortura, dicen grupos civiles (Sin Embargo, 3 de febrero de 2016)

Legislativo debe aprobar una ley contra la Tortura a la altura de los estándares internacionales (Codigo DH, 3 de febrero de 2016)

For more information from SIPAZ

Nacional: 20 ONG critican el proceso para crear la Ley General contra la Tortura (7 de julio de 2015)

Chiapas/Nacional: 26 de junio, Día Internacional en Apoyo de las Víctimas de la Tortura (1 de julio de 2015)

Nacional/Internacional: relator especial de Naciones Unidas sobre Tortura presenta informe sobre México en Ginebra, Suiza (10 de marzo de 2015)


Chiapas: Supporters of The Voice of Amate make agreement for freedom of prisoners and damages

February 9, 2016

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Members of Supporters of The Voice of Amate in front of San Cristóbal de Las Casas Cathedral.

Photo: @Chiapas Denuncia Pública

On February 4 last, members of the ex-prisoners organization Supporters of The Voice of Amate, adherents of the Sixth Declaration of the Lacandon Jungle of the Zapatista Army of National Liberation (EZLN) released a message at a press conference of their demand for damages for having been unjustly deprived of their liberty. Those who were imprisoned for over a decade demanded that the state government “fulfills its promise to pay material damages and losses of goods and estate caused by the unjust imprisonments that we suffered with our families over a number of years.”

After the press conference they staged a sit-in in front of the San Cristobal de Las Casas Cathedral, where they remained until an agreement was signed with representatives of the State Government promising to meet the damages in staged payments, meeting the total by April 30 of this year at the latest. They announced the rest of the commitments on the part of the government through a communiqué, such as the liberation of Roberto Paciencia Cruz, unjustly imprisoned in the State Center for Social Reintegration (CERSS) No. 5, as well as finding a way to free Alejandro Diaz Santiz, member of The Voice of Amate, held at Villa Comaititan maximum security prison, near Tapachula, who is being immediately transferred to San Cristobal de Las Casas prison “as a sign of good will.”

For more information:

Expresos levantan plantón (Chiapas Denuncia Pública, 8 de febrero de 2016)

Levantan ex reos indígenas plantón en la Plaza Catedral de San Cristóbal (La Jornada, 7 de febrero de 2016)

Expresos “solidarios de la Voz del Amate” continuarán su plantón (Chiapas Denuncia Pública, 4 de febrero de 2016)

Comunicado de expresos solidarios de La Voz del Amate Adherentes a la Sexta (Chiapas Denuncia Pública, 4 de febrero de 2016)

For more information from SIPAZ:

Chiapas: Denuncia Roberto Paciencia escasez de alimentos y negación de visitas (27 de enero de 2016)

Chiapas: 11 aniversario de la fundación de La Voz del Amate (13 de enero de 2016)

Chiapas: Jornada por la liberación de Alejandro Díaz Sántiz y Mumia Abu-Jamal (9 de noviembre de 2015)

Chiapas: Trasladan a Alejandro Díaz Sántiz, junto a 386 presos, a penal de alta seguridad (15 de septiembre de 2015)

Chiapas: Liberan a 9 presos solidarios de la Voz del Amate, Patishtán seguirá encarcelado (5 de julio de 2013)

 


Oaxaca: San Dionisio del Mar marks four years in resistance against wind farm

February 9, 2016

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(@Noticiasnet)

On January 29, the community of San Dionisio del Mar on the Tehuantepec Isthmus, Oaxaca, marked four years of resistance in its struggle against the installation of a wind farm on its territory. Pedro Orozco, member of the People’s Assembly of San Dionisio del Mar (Asamblea del Pueblo de San Dionisio del Mar – APSDM), stressed that they celebrated this day because they managed “to stop the wind farm at Mareñas. The achievement of this resistance was that public opinion could clearly see that it was not a political conflict between the PRI and PRD but that it was resistance against the pillage of territory; that we were an assembly of campesino fishermen citizens who were defending their lands. We managed to break the media siege.”

San Dionisio del Mar was the first indigenous community on the Tehuantepec Isthmus that achieved the suspension of the wind farm project. Orozco also mentioned that the wind farm companies on the Isthmus “advanced for a long time without any resistance, the people didn’t know about consultation – which should be prior – that’s why the companies could buy land rights.” The APSDM representative, Elmi Gallegos, recalled that four years ago the then municipal president Miguel Lopez Castellanos tried to cheat them by giving the use of the land over to the company Mareña Renovables. “Then the general assembly of communal landholders decided not to allow this deceit and we began a campaign of struggle which led us to investigate everything related to this kind of project to defend our territory.” He lamented the fact that the company Mareña Renovables had divided the community in San Dionisio. “There are families, relatives, godparents who are in conflict; in these three years the municipal authority hasn’t been designated, there is a tense calm in the municipality, but the majority is convinced that our struggle is just and is for our children.”

During the planning of the fourth anniversary of their struggle, they confirmed in their assembly that neither money, nor political pressure, nor corruption of the authorities will change them. “We don’t want a free, prior and informed consultation to which we are entitled, because we know that the businessmen will buy the people’s votes, so, no to wind farms, to mining and to consultation.”

For more information in Spanish:

“¡Sí! a mar y tierra; ¡no! a eólicas en Oaxaca” (Noticiasnet, 8 de febrero de 2016)

San Dionisio del Mar celebra 4 años de resistencia (Código DH, 1 de febreo de 2016)

San Dionisio del Mar, Oaxaca, festejará el triunfo contra parque eólico que afectaría a pescadores (Desinformémonos, 26 de enero de 2016)

Cumple San Dionisio del Mar 4 años en resistencia (Noticiasnet, 25 de enero de 2016)

For more information from SIPAZ

Oaxaca: Pobladores de Juchitan ganan amparo para suspensión de obras de parque eólico (14 de ocutbre de 2015)

Oaxaca: Tercer aniversario del movimiento contra los proyectos eólicos en San Dionisio del Mar (30 de enero de 2015)

Oaxaca: Conflictos por elecciones extraordinarias en San Dionisio del Mar (19 de diciembre de 2014

 


Chiapas: Campesinos intimidated after taking back their lands

February 8, 2016

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Assembly in San Isidro Los Laureles community @RadioZapatista

In a communiqué on January 21, the San Isidro Los Laureles community, Venustiano Carranza municipality, adherents to the Sixth Declaration of the Lacandon Jungle and members of the ‘space for struggle Semilla Digna, reported intimidation “on the part of the landlords” 31 days after taking back their lands. They reported that, “On the part of the landlords, they are going around intimidating on the recovered estates, in the latest models of Ford trucks with darkened windows, with four people on the back of the truck, wearing bullet-proof vests and high-powered weapons.” They ask public opinion, human rights organizations, the National Indigenous Congress (Congreso Nacional Indígena – CNI), the alternative media, and the Councils of Good Government of the Zapatista Army of National Liberation (EZLN) “of everything that comes against us and against our rights, because our decision is and will be to resist and defend what legitimately corresponds to us (sic).”

 It is worth noting that on December 20, 2015, the San Isidro Laureles community decided to take back “about 165 hectares from various properties: “Tres Picos” (property of Octovín Albores, owner of 30 hectares), “Las Delicias” (property of Francisco Javier Ruíz, owner of 60 hectares), and “El Refugio’ estate (property of Rodrigo Ruíz, owner of 75 hectares).” 

For more information in Spanish:

San Isidro Los Laureles: Intimidan a campesinos con armas largas tras recuperación de tierras (Radio Zapatista, 22 de enero de 2015)

Chiapas: “Con armas de fuego de alto poder”, intimidan a campesinos tras recuperar sus tierras. (Radio Pozol, 22 de enero de 2016)

Comunidad de San Isidro Los Laureles denuncia amenaza continua de desalojo y actuación de guardias blancas (Koman Ilel, 17 de enero de 2016)

Campesinos de San Isidro los Laureles temen desalojo violento (Radio Zapatista, 17 de enero de 2015)

Grupo de Trabajo No Estamos Todxs en solidaridad con la comunidad de San Isidro los Laureles (Radio Zapatista, 27 de enero de 2016)

Para entender la recuperación de tierras de la comunidad San Isidro Los Laureles, Carranza, Chiapas (5 de enero de 2016)

 For more information from SIPAZ:

Chiapas: Comunidad San Isidro Los Laureles recupera las tierras que “trabajaron nuestros abuelos, abuelas, padres que eran peones acasillados” (30 de diciembre de 2015)

 


Oaxaca: State meeting of communities and organizations in resistance to mining projects

February 6, 2016

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Authorities of the communities that attended the meeting @ SIPAZ

On January 29 and 30, representatives of 48 communities, 30 social organizations, two research centers, and three community radio stations took part in the State Encounter of Communities and Organizations against Mining (Encuentro Estatal de Comunidades y Organizaciones contra la Minería), in Cerro de Las Huertas community, in the municipality of Ejutla de Crespo. The meeting had the aim of generating a space for reflection at a state level on the advances and challenges of movements against mining, strengthening the resistance and defense of communities and organizations in Oaxaca, analyzing how to improve movements in struggle against mining projects, and the coordination of activists to confront foreign companies. In a statement agreed by the participants in the event, they demanded the cancellation of all mining projects in state by the state and federal governments. There are more than 400 mining concessions in the territory of Oaxaca, “none of which was subjected to consultation.” They recalled that apart from environmental violations and effects, the companies create internal conflicts in each location. The participants in the encounter showed the close relationship that exists between mining magnates and federal and state government representatives to strip the peoples and indigenous communities of their territories.

In their statement they emphasized that, “They are violating the people’s right to information as there are already mining concessions given by the government without the consent of our community assemblies. The mining companies violate our rights using a range of strategies and mechanisms to divide and confront communities, while on the other hand the federal and state governments make legislative and institutional changes to benefit the interests of the transnational companies, such as Fondo Minero, and these changes have as their aim taking territories away from the indigenous peoples and communities. At the same time, the work of defenders of territory is criminalized, they are persecuted, imprisoned, and in the worst of cases their lives are taken away.”

Those gathered called on communities, peoples and organizations to defend land and territory against “death projects” and declared July 22 of each year as “State Day of Resistance against Mining”.

For more information in Spanish:

Exigen cancelación de 400 concesiones mineras en Oaxaca (Desinformémonos, 2 de febrero de 2016)

La Minuta de EDUCA con audios del evento (EDUCA, 2 de febrero de 2016)

Comunidades y organizaciones exigen cancelar proyectos mineros en Oaxaca (La Jornada, 1 de febrero de 2016)

DECLARATORIA DE CERRO DE LAS HUERTAS EJUTLA DE CRESPO OAXACA (EDUCA, 30 de enero de 2016)

For more information from SIPAZ:

Chiapas: Encuentro Chiapaneco de afectadas y afectados por represas y minería (2 de febrero de 2016)

Oaxaca: Ejidos y comunidades de Valles Centrales declaran sus territorios libres de minería (4 de diciembre de 2015)

Oaxaca: En la Costa declaran el rechazo a proyectos hidroeléctricos y de minería (18 de noviembre de 2015)

Oaxaca: A 3 años del asesinato de Bernardo Vásquez, Fortuna Silver espera mayores ganancias (26 de marzo de 2015)

 


National/Guerrero: Unfavorable reports about corruption and human rights in Mexico

February 5, 2016

CNDH

Luis Raúl González Pérez, CNDH president. Photo: @CuartOscuro

Two reports on human rights in Mexico coincided in that there is little progress in the areas of human rights and combatting corruption. In one report, the president of the National Commission for Human Rights (Comisión Nacional de Derechos Humanos – CNDH), Luis Raul Gonzalez Perez, declared that Guerrero is the state with most complaints, followed by Coahuila, Tamaulipas, and Veracruz. According to Aristegui Noticias news outlet, forced disappearances have risen to 26 thousand since the beginning of the “war against drugs” in 2006 to the present. During the presentation of the Commission’s (CNDH) annual report to the Permanent Commission of the General Congress, Gonzalez Perez highlighted that “the problem of disappearances challenges and questions the abilities and resources of the Mexican State to respond to a situation that, we the passage of time, we have not been able to overcome.” Likewise, he added that “the Chalchihuapan, Tlatlaya, Iguala, and Apatzingán cases had altered the general and historical perception of human rights in our country, testing its institutions.” As regards the violation of human rights, Chiapas is the sixth state with the highest frequency of reports, and Oaxaca eighth.

In another report, Human Rights Watch (HRW) noted in its 2015 annual report that “members of the Mexican security forces have participated in numerous forced disappearances. […] Since 2006, the CNDH received approximately 9,000 complaints of abuses committed by members of the army – including 1,700 during the [term of office] of the current government.” The same organization highlighted that the executive has made little progress in sanctioning members of the military implicated in cases of human rights violations as they are under the jurisdiction of military courts. Added to this, Alejandro Salas, director of Americas of International Transparency (Americas de Transparencia Internacional), noted that ‘in countries like Mexico where the police are at the service of local ‘caciques’, or at the service of mayors, of provincial governors, the police is not doing its professional and independent work, but instead responding to the interests of certain groups, often illegal groups, such as drug traffickers.”

For more information in Spanish:

Guerrero, Tamaulipas y Veracruz, los estados con más denuncias por desapariciones: CNDH (Eme Equis, 27 de enero de 2016)

Ni combate a la corrupción, ni avances en DDHH, coinciden dos reportes globales sobre México (Sin Embargo, 27 de enero de 2016)

Autoridades, incapaces de responder a casos de desaparición forzada: CNDH, en su informe 2015 (Animal Político, 27 de enero de 2016)

Escasos avances para castigar a militares violadores de derechos humanos en México: Human Rights Watch (Sididh, 28 de enero de 2016)

Impunidad enmarca desapariciones en México, denuncia Cadhac ante la ONU (Proceso, 27 de enero de 2016)

Informe anual de actividades 2015 (Comisión Nacional de los Derechos Humanos)

For more information from SIPAZ:

Guerrero: Padres y madres de Ayotzinapa van a la Corte, a 16 meses de la desaparición de sus hijos (27 de enero de 2016)

Guerrero: ONG y expertos en derechos humanos respaldan labor del GIEI en caso Ayotzinapa (25 de enero de 2016)

Guererro: Se cumplen 4 años de desaparición forzada de campesinos ecologistas de la Costa Grande (8 de diciembre de 2015)

Nacional/Internacional: Ejército y fuerzas de seguridad involucradas en asesinatos extrajudiciales, tortura, desaparición forzada: EU (10 de julio de 2015)

 


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