Chiapas: 18 years since the Acteal massacre

December 27, 2015

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Acteal, 22 December 2015 (@SIPAZ)

On 22 December 2015, 18 years since the massacre of 45 indigenous persons in Acteal, Chenalhó municipality, the Las Abejas Civil Society (organization to which the victims had pertained) carried out a pilgrimage and a commemoration of the events to denounce the impunity that continues to prevail in the case. In a communique, Las Abejas stressed that, “the bad government investigating the intellectual authors of this crime through the badly named ‘Supreme Court for Justice in the Nation,’ that is to say, the ‘Supreme Court for the Rich and Criminals,’ has ordered the massive release of the paramilitaries who performed the massacre. As far as we can tell, only 2 are left incarcerated, and at any moment will they also be released. Thus it remains clear to us that justice will not be granted by the government, because the Mexican State is the one that gave the order for the massacre, such that it is a criminal party and cannot rightfully be judge in the case. The Mexican justice system is expired and rotten. It is very clear that, if we wish to have true justice, we organized peoples of Mexico must construct a true, dignified, thorough, and humane justice.” Las Abejas ended the communique stressing that “Memory is an act of Justice!”

For his part, the director of the Fray Bartolomé de las Casas Center for Human Rights (CDHFBC), Pedro Faro Navarro, denounced that in the Acteal case, “there has been no justice, and the wall of impunity persists.” He added that “state officials, including Ernesto Zedillo, clearly knew what was happening in Chenalhó, in terms of the precedents and the moment at which the massacre was happening, due to reports from the Mexican Army which had been deployed in the Highlands region, thus confirming the direct participation of the Mexican State in the Acteal massacre. The national context shows us that justice will not come from above, nor from those in power or those who administer the State, let alone the existing power-groups or anyone who manipulates and corrupts [the people], who are the owners of the justice system in Mexico.” He noted that for this reason, the Las Abejas Civil Society “is building through its steadfastness another justice,” such that “one possible conclusion is that the future of the people who have been degraded and discriminated against will need no justice from the State.”

For more information (in Spanish):

La memoria es un acto de Justicia – XVIII Conmemoración de la masacre de Acteal (Sociedad Civil Las Abejas de Acteal, 22 de diciembre de 2015)

Boletín 18 aniversario de la masacre de Acteal (Centro de Derechos Humanos Fray Bartolomé de Las Casas, 22 de diciembre de 2015)

Impune, el “crimen de Estado” en Acteal: Las Abejas (La Jornada, 22 de diciembre de 2015)

Acteal: 18 años de violencia (La Jornada, 23 de diciembre de 2015)

Conmemoran 18 años de matanza de Acteal (El Universal, 23 de diciembre de 2015)

Acteal: 18 años de impunidad (Desinformemonos, 22 de diciembre de 2015)

A 18 años de la matanza de Acteal persiste la impunidad: Frayba (Proceso, 23 de diciembre de 2015)

For more information from SIPAZ (in English):

Chiapas: Las Abejas reject ‘friendly solution’ with Mexican State (25 October 2015)

Chiapas: Monthly commemoration by Las Abejas de Acteal (8 October 2015)

Chiapas: Las Abejas of Acteal denounce 6 years of release of paramilitaries (10 September 2015)

Chiapas: A member of the Las Abejas Civil Society is murdered (2 July 2015)

Chiapas: TPP pre-audience judges Mexican State for crimes against humanity (27 July 2014)

 


National/International: WOLA presents new report: “Human-rights violations against migrants continue”

December 27, 2015

On 18 Novembrer 2015, the Washington Office on Latin America (WOLA) published a report on the human-rights situation of migrant and refugee persons in Mexico from 2014 to present, with a focus on the changes implemented since the start of the Southern Border Program.  Compiled by nine civil organizations based in Mexico and the U.S., the report “An uncertain path: Justice for crimes and human-rights violations against migrants and refugees in Mexico” exposes the problem of security and access to justice for migrants.  Since the implementation of the Southern Border Program, the operations, arrests, and deportations of migrants in Mexico have increased significantly, and so have human-rights violations.  Migrant homes have observed a rise in the abuses and crimes committed by organized and State agents against this population, including kidnapping, robbery, extortion, and trafficking of persons.  In the case of girls and women, more sexual violence has been reported.  As a result of these measures, the number of arrests of foreigners rose 73% between July 2014 and June 2015, relative to the same period the previous year.  “If the indicator for the Southern Border Program is the arrest of persons, obviously it has been very successful, but if it is placed within the context which it was developed, that is to protect the human rights of migrants, it has failed […].  In Mexico, where there are migrants, there is violence,” observed Maureen Meyer, member of WOLA. Beyond this, the civil groups have demanded that the Mexican State “guarantee access to justice, compensation for damages incurred, humanitarian visas, and refuge for the migrant population.”

According to the report, the U.S. government has offered political and economic support for Mexico to carry out the Southern Border Program since the burgeoning number of arrivals of unaccompanied children and adolescents to the U.S. border.  This support has to do with especially with activities related to border security in southern Mexico.  In light of this situation, the civil organizations made nine recommendations to the U.S. and Mexican governments to address the problem.  Among these is one directed at the National Institute for Migration, calling on it to strengthen internal control and to prevent violations of human rights.

For more information (in Spanish):

Informe “Un camino incierto. Justicia para delitos y violaciones a los derechos humanos contra personas migrantes y refugiadas en México” (Oficina de Latinoamérica en Washington, WOLA, 18 de noviembre de 2015)

Sin desagregar por sexo denuncias de agresiones a migrantes (Cimac Noticias, 18 de noviembre de 2015)

Siguen violaciones a DH de migrantes: WOLA (El Universal, 18 de noviembre de 2015)

ONG: crecieron detenciones de migrantes, pero también abusos (La Jornada, 18 de noviembre de 2015)

“Un camino incierto: Justicia para delitos y violaciones a los derechos humanos contra personas migrantes y refugiadas en México” (Fundar, 11 de noviembre de 2015)

For more information from SIPAZ (in English):

National/international: The IACHR expresses concern before hardening of Mexican authorities toward migrants (30 June 2015)

Mexico/National: Honduran migrant dies of drowning in presence of migration agents, says La 72 (22 March 2015)

Chiapas/National: Bishops of southern Mexico pronounce themselves on the “drama of migration” (8 February 2015)


Chiapas: Tila ejido denounces “military-police” operation in Tila

December 27, 2015

80 aniversario del Ejido Tila @SIPAZ

On 19 November, authorities from the Tila ejido denounced a “military, police, and paramilitary” operation on their lands, “WHICH […] IS STILL CIRCULATING INSIDE THE EJIDO.”

The operation began on 18 November, when the soldiers and police besieged the populace, establishing checkpoints to the entrances to Tila.  According to Radio Zapatista, “this operation takes place within the context of a growing demand for the withdrawal of City Hall, which is illegally settled on ejidal lands and has been clearly linked to paramilitarization in the region.”  The ejidatarios denounced as well the false commissars who have been named by the state government by means of illegal processes and documents, “including a paramilitary leader who was incarcerated for five years for having participated with the Paz y Justicia group.”  In parallel, the ejidatarios denounced that groups of youth were being armed and trained as a “paramilitary force” which in the context of the recent elections clarified that “ALL THOSE WHO ARE WORKING IN CITY HALL ARE THE SAME PEOPLE WHO MASK UP TO CARRY OUT VIOLENCE DURING ELECTORAL SEASON SO AS TO CONTINUE HOLDING ON TO POWER LIKE THE PARAMILITARIES THEY ARE.”  Zapatista Radio claimed that the operation launched on 18 November “makes evident the complicity among the government, the Army, and different police forces with paramilitarization in the region.”

The ejidatarios have requested “SOLIDARITY SO THAT ALL ORGANIZATIONS, COLLECTIVES, AND PERSONS BE AWARE OF WHATEVER MAY HAPPEN.”

For more information (in Spanish):

Denunciamos operativo militar policiaco y paramilitar en Tila (La Otra Ejido Tila, 20 de noviembre de 2015)

Ejido Tila denuncia operativo militar, policiaco y paramilitar (Radio Zapatista, 20 de noviembre de 2015)

Ejido Tila: denunciamos operativos militar policiaco paramilitar (Red Contra la Represi+on y por la Solidaridad, 20 de noviembre de 2015)

Chiapas: Ejido Tila denuncia operativo militar, policiaco y paramilitar. (Radio Pozol, 20 de noviembre de 2015)

Tila: ch’oles gritan por su independencia y autonomía ejidal frente a la violencia paramilitar (Radio Zapatista, 18 de septiembre de 2015)

TILA (Ejido Tila, 16 de septiembre de 2015)

F0r more information from SIPAZ (in English):

Chiapas: Ejidatarios from Tila denounce confrontation between PVEM and PRI, with 4 injured (21 July 2015)

Chiapas: Ejidatarios from Tila denounce attempt at usurpation (21 January 2015)

Chiapas: Ejidatarios from Tila receive threats following march to commemorate 80th anniversary of the ejido (26 October 2014)

Chiapas: Ejidatarios from Tila denounce new attempt to loot land (22 January 2014)


National: Federal police deployed to states that reject the the performance evaluations; activities to repudiate the educational reform are announced

December 27, 2015

Foto @ Página 3

Photo @ Página 3

On 14 and 15 November, there was held the national exam on teachers’ knowledge, abilities, and competencies that forms part of the performance evaluation.  According to the Teachers’ Professional Docent, 40,303 teachers participated in 25 states of Mexican, comprising almost 97.8% of all teachers.  Following this first performance evaluation, protests raged in at least 10 states, and the Minister for Public Education (SEP), Aurelio Nuño Mayer, decided to dismiss the state delegates from Durango, Tlaxcala, Sonora, Zacatecas, and Morelos, after carrying out the first assessment of the evaluation.

In Chiapas, teachers affiliated with the National Coordination of Educational Workers (CNTE) mobilized from 13-15 November in marches wherein more than 30,000 teachers participated.  The CNTE teachers indicated that their demands are very clear: “suspension of the educational reform, rejection of punitive evaluations, and liberation for our political prisoners.”  With this last comment, they made reference to the 4 Oaxacan teachers who were arrested and transferred to the Federal Center for Social Readaptation in Altiplano, Mexico State, in October.  Amidst these protests, the evaluations were pushed back until December in Chiapas.

In Michoacán, 5,000 police arrived to the capital Morelia to guarantee that the exam take place on 21-22 November.  It was reported that the federal agents came prepared with anti-riot equipment, shields, and helmets, beyond their weapons.

In Oaxaca, Governor Gabino Cué Monteagudo sent his general secretary of governance, Alfonso Gómez Sandoval Hernández, to present the V Report of the State Government to the congress.  The absence of the governor had to with the fact that Section 22 of the National Union of Educational Workers (SNTE-CNTE) planned to mobilize at the site where the report was to be presented.  As such, it was surrounded by nearly 2,000 state and federal police.

In other news, Section 22 of the SNTE-CNTE made public the agreements it had made at the Broad National Representative Assembly (ANRA) on 18 November in Mexico City.  Representatives declared that on 26 November, in observance of a global day of action for Ayotzinapa and Mexico, the teachers participated in a march in the city, at the end of which they installed an indefinite sit-in for the relatives of the 43 student-teachers from Ayotzinapa, Guerrero, to pressure the government to implement the recommendations made by the Inter-American Court on Human Rights (IACHR).  Beyond this, on 14 and 15 November they plan to march in the national caravan to Altiplano to demand the release of the politically imprisoned teachers.  Lastly, they called on the secretary of public education, Aurelio Nuño, to hold a public debate with the CNTE.

For more information (in Spanish):

Maestros se manifestaron el fin de semana (Chiapas Paralelo, 16 de noviembre de 2015)

Cué termina como Ulises Ruiz: acorralado por el magisterio y blindado por fuerzas estatales y federales (Página 3, 16 de noviembre de 2015)

Acuerdan maestros movilizaciones y debate con la SEP (Libertad Oaxaca, 19 de noviembre de 2015)

Remueve la SEP a 5 delegados (Reforma, 18 de noviembre de 2015)

Arriban a Michoacán 5 mil policías para garantizar evaluación docente (Proceso, 19 de noviembre de 2015)

Acuden a evaluación más de 40 mil maestros de 25 entidades (Proceso, 16 de noviembre de 2015)

For more information from SIPAZ (in English):

Oaxaca: Low participation in teachers’ performance evaluation (26 December 2015)

Guerrero: Teachers in Acapulco successfully sabotage educational evaluation (26 December 2015)

Guerrero: Teacher from Acapulco dies after violent repression of a protest by the Federal Police (10 March 2015)

National: Thousands of teachers march against the educational reform (4 October 2013)


National: Increase in attacks on journalists in Mexico

December 27, 2015

@Cuartoscuro

@Cuartoscuro

In recent weeks have transpired a number of attacks and acts of harassment against journalists in Mexico.  On 20 November in Mexico City, the home of the journalist Gloria Muñoz Ramírez was raided.  Muñoz Ramírez is the director of the electronic magazine Desinformémonos and a columnist for La Jornada.  Moreover, the editorship of Desinformémonos suffered a robbery and a cyber-attack.  The magazine is dedicated to documenting popular struggles and social movements in Mexico and throughout the world.  “This attack takes place within the context of grave attacks on journalists in the country, thus harming the right to information and putting at risk the lives, integrity, and personal security of those who dedicate themselves to communication,” noted the Fray Bartolomé de las Casas Center for Human Rights, based in San Cristóbal de Las Casas, Chiapas, in a communique.

Moreover, on 25 November, the journalist Maite Azuela received a death-threat at her home in Mexico City.  The articles written by the journalist are dedicated to human-rights policies and violations, recently related to the Army, as led by General Salvador Cienfuegos, and the state government of Puebla, directed by Rafael Moreno Valle. On 27 November in Guerrero, the general secretary of the state government, Florencio Salazar Adame, interrupted into a radio program and threatened the journalist Sergio Ocampo Arista, a news reporter, who had been discussing “suspicious” acts taken by the State.  According to the Journalistic Investigation Agency, Salazar Adame “arrived violently to the radio station and took the microphone to warn Ocampo […] that he should be careful with the criticisms he launches against the PRI government of Astudillo Flores,” governor of Guerrero.  Recently in Veracruz, at least 12 journalists were attacked by public-security forces.

Amidst these incidents, the Mexican Commission for the Defense and Promotion of Human Rights (CMDPDH) and Amnesty International Mexico (AI Mexico) submitted more than 12,000 signatures to the state authorities to demand that all the necessary measures be taken so that the Mechanism of Protection for Rights-Defenders and Journalists in Mexico function effectively. CMDPDH and AI indicated that the “work of rights-defenders in the country is risky and despite the fact that since 2012, there exists a law establishing a mechanism to protect these defenders and journalists who are at risk, it has not been implemented effectively due to lack of interest on the part of politicians.”  From 2000 to date, the National Commission on Human Rights in Mexico (CNDH) has registered 107 murders of journalists; 20 disappearances of journalists between 2005 and 2015; 48 attacks on media institutions from 2006 to date and a total of 506 complaints from 2010 to 2015.  Beyond this, between 2014 and 2015 the CNDH has authorized 26 precautionary measures.

For more information (in Spanish):

Recibe amenaza de muerte articulista Maite Azuela en el Distrito Federal (Desinformémonos, 30 de noviembre de 2015)

Periodistas veracruzanos exigen tipificar delito de “ataque a la libertad de expresión” y garantías de seguridad (Revolución 3.0, 29 de noviembre de 2015)

Secretario general del gobierno priista de Guerrero irrumpe en cabina de radio con sus guaruras y amenaza a periodista (Revolución 3.0, 28 de noviembre de 2015)

Basta de agresiones contra periodistas en México (Desinformémonos, 27 de noviembre de 2015)

Exigen eficacia en protección a periodistas (El Economista, 26 de noviembre de 2015)

Condenamos agresiones a periodistas y el ataque a Desinformémonos (Centro de Derechos Humanos Fray Bartolomé de las Casas, 24 de noviembre de 2015)

For more information from SIPAZ (in English):

National/Mexico: Torture and murder of journalist and four women (10 September 2015)

National: Disappeared journalist Gregorio Jiménez is found dead (16 February 2014)

National/International: PBI and WOLA publish report on Mechanism of Protection for Human-Rights Defenders and Journalists in Mexico (10 February 2015)

National: A delicate moment for the Mechanism for the Protection of Rights Defenders and Journalists (30 March 2014)

Oaxaca: New attacks on journalists (2 September 2014)


Guerrero: 4 communal police killed in El Fortín, Tixtla

December 26, 2015

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Image of the funeral of one of the murdered communal police

Photo @Sergio Ocampo

On 27 November were buried the four members of the justice house La Patria es Primero (“The Nation First”), affiliated with the Regional Coordination of Communal Authorities-Communal Police (CRAC-PC), who were killed the previous Thursday in Tixtla by presumed members of organized-crime groups.  The prosecutorial office of Guerrero state released a communique reporting that it will “investigate the aggression perpetrated against seven members of the CRAC-PC’s justice house […] in which four of these agents lost their lives in the Tixtla municipality.”  According to the representatives of the justice house in question, behind the execution of their comrades the responsibility likely belongs to the organized-crime groups Los ardillos and Los rojos that are battling over control of the Tixtla plaza.

For more information (in Spanish):

Sepultan a 4 policías comunitarios asesinados en El Fortín, Guerrero (La Jornada, 28 de noviembre de 2015)

Matan en Tixtla a 4 integrantes de la policía comunitaria (La Jornada, 26 de noviembre de 2015)

Asesinato de cuatro policías comunitarios en Tixtla es una declaratoria de guerra: CRAC (Cambio de Michoacan, 27 de noviembre de 2015)


Chiapas: Events to observe the International Day for the Elimination of Violence against Women

December 26, 2015

Mitin del MODEVITE y del Movimiento de Mujeres en Defensa de la Tierra, el Territorio y por el Derecho de las Mujeres a decidir. Foto: @SIPAZ

Rally by MODEVITE and the Movement of Women in Defense of the Land and Territory and for the Right of Women to Decide
Photo: @SIPAZ

On 25 November, the International Day for the Elimination of Violence against Women, several events were held in San Cristóbal de Las Casas, Chiapas.

For one, the Movement of Women in Defense of the Land and Territory and for the Right of Women to Decide held its first assembly on 23-24 November. Through this action, the organization released a communique “in favor of social property, in opposition to all forms of privatization of the land and territory” and denouncing “the energy reform as well as its continuation in the strategic rural reform.” The women, together with some men, ended the meeting with a march against violence against women. Beyond this, the Movement in Defense of Land and Life (MODEVITE), from the Believing People of the San Cristóbal de Las Casas diocese, also marched on the same day. Simultaneously, thousands of persons (30,000 according to Proceso) mobilized in ten other municipalities in the state, “to remember that Mother Earth must be protected against the mining, oil-extraction, and hydroelectric-dam megaprojects, among others, that are being imposed on our lands […]. We will raise our voices to prevent the sale of alcoholic beverages, drugs, and prostitution in our communities, and we will denounce the ineptitude and corruption of authorities in terms of failing to resolve these problems.” Both marches converged and reached Central Park jointly.

Despite the fact that the two groups had already announced their events, in the Cathedral Plaza, where the marches traditionally end to give way to rallies, the space was occupied by the state-government. From early in the morning, privatized space was installed for the event at which Governor Manuel Velasco Coello awarded support “From Heart to Heart” to 4,000 single mothers. It bears noting that initiatives like the Movement of Women in Defense of the Land and Territory and for the Right of Women to Decide have denounced the welfarism promoted by the state governments, which lead to dependency and end up becoming a form of social control over women.

For more information (in Spanish):

#SanCristóbal de las Casas sale a la calle contra las agresiones machistas y en defensa del territorio #Chiapas (Koman Ilel, 25 de noviembre de 2015)

Comunicado del l Movimiento de Mujeres en Defensa de la Tierra, el Territorio y por el Derecho de las Mujeres a decidir (Koman Ilel, 25 de noviembre de 2015)

Realizan mujeres Asamblea en Defensa de la Tierra (Cimac Noticias, 24 de noviembre de 2015)

Marchan miles en Chiapas en pro de la vida y la defensa del territorio (Proceso, 25 de noviembre de 2015)

Miles de indígenas integrantes del Pueblo Creyente marcharon en Chiapas (Chiapas Paralelo, 26 de noviembre de 2015)

Peregrinación en defensa de la vida y el territorio en 11 municipios de Chiapas (Chiapas Denuncia Pública, 24 de noviembre de 2015)

Por la vida y la libertad de las mujeres (Cimac Noticias, 24 de noviembre de 2015)

For more information from SIPAZ (in English):

Chiapas: Center for Women’s Rights in Chiapas denounces threats (26 December 2015)

Chiapas: During International Women’s Day on 8 March, a meeting, a march, and a rally (10 March 2015)

National: Multiple activities for International Women’s Day (16 March 2014)

Chiapas: Forum on “The rights of childhood and adolescence in southeastern Mexico” (15 March 2014)

Oaxaca: Request of activation of Gender Alert amidst increase in number of femicides (2 March 2014)

 


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