Guerrero: Update in the Iguala case: former Iguala mayor is arrested; governor of Guerrero resigns; European Parliament divided over Ayotzinapa

November 3, 2014

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Mobilization “A light for Ayotzinapa” in San Cristóbal de Las Casas. Photo@SIPAZ

On 22 October, the protest-day “A light for Ayotzinapa” was held in dozens of cities in Mexico and abroad.  In Mexico City itself, 50,000 participated in the march, according to city authorities.  In Iguala, protestors marched the same route taken by the normalist students before they were attacked by police.  In Chiapas, the Zapatista Army of National Liberation (EZLN) carried out a prayer and protest.  Furthermore, thousands of citizens, including students and teachers, participated in the mobilizations in several cities of the state.  Students from different educational centers throughout the world joined the action, manifesting themselves in their countries for the disappearances of the 43 students.

On 23 October, Navy units arrested José Luis Abarca, former mayor of Iguala, and his wife Maria de Los Ángeles Pineda Villa, who have been indicated by the Federal Attorney General’s Office (PGR) as those who ordered the disappearance of the 43 students on 26 September.  Following their arrest, they were required to declare themselves before the Specialized Subprosecutorial Office for Investigations into Organized Crime (SEIDO).  The arrest was executed by the Navy with support from the PGR in a hotel in the capital of Veracruz state.

Also on 23 October, following weeks of calls to this end from all standpoints, Ángel Aguirre Rivero, governor of Guerrero, publicly announced his resignation before the state congress over the Iguala case.  He began the announcement by summarizing the advances his administration had made in the Iguala case, though he did not provide any information regarding the actual whereabouts of the disappeared.  In fact, the administration of Ángel Aguirre Rivero began with the murder of two other normalist students from Ayotzinapa: Gabriel Echeverría de Jesús and Jorge Alexis Herrera Pino were shot dead by federal and ministerial police on the Sol Highway on 12 December as they were clearing a blockade. This case continues in impunity.

The same day, nine new mass-gravesites were located in the La Parota zone near Iguala by communards who are members of the Union of Peoples and Organizations from Guerrero State (UPOEG).  They referred their findings to the federal police for investigation.

In other news, the European Parliament on 23 October approved a resolution condemning the events in Iguala that calls for the European Union (EU) to restrengthen its cooperation with Mexico in terms of human rights.  The resolution demands the continuation of investigations “until the students [are found to be] safe,” lamenting the “apparent infiltration of organized crime in local police and administrative organizations.”  The resolution presented the government of Enrique Peña Nieto as a victim of organized crime, and not as a principally responsible party in the acts.  In this sense, the European Green Party and the Unified European Left/Nordic Greens decided to distance themselves from this declaration and instead released their own proposal for resolution.  Both groups support the intervention in Mexico of the International Criminal Court (ICC) located in the Hague, as well as the suspension of the bilateral Global Mexico-EU accord, security agreements, and the arms trade with Mexico.  This alternative resolution interprets the events of Ayotzinapa as a spiral of violence that originates in years of impunity and broken promises by Mexican authorities.

For more information (in Spanish):

Detiene a exedil de Iguala y a su esposa (Eje Central, 24 de cotubre de 2014)

Parlamento Europeo condena desaparición de normalistas (El Universal, 23 de octubre de 2014)

Rechaza Parlamento Europeo condenar a México (El Universal, 22 de octubre de 2014)

Se divide Parlamento Europeo por desapariciones en Ayotzinapa(Proceso, 22 de octubre de 2014)
Tomó por sorpresa a diputados decisión de Aguirre de renunciar: Campos Aburto (La Jornada de Guerrero, 24 de octubre de 2014)

Hallazgo de 9 fosas más en Iguala; “había mochilas y lapiceros”: UPOEG(Aristegui Noticias, 24 de octubre de 2014)

Cobertura de marcha por Ayotzinapa: padres dan plazo de 2 días a autoridades (La Jornada, 22 de octubre de 2014)

“Nuestra luz es una forma de abrazar a quienes hoy hacen falta”: EZLN (Chiapas Paralelo, 23 de octubre de 2014)

For more information from SIPAZ (in English):

Chiapas: New actions by the EZLN to support Ayotzinapa (26 October 2014)

Guerrero: Contradictory versions regarding findings from graves in Iguala three weeks after the forced disappearance of 43 students from Ayotzinapa – Protests are radicalized (26 October 2014)

National/International: Multiple mobilizations and marches for the “Pain” and “Rage” of Ayotzinapa (12 October 2014)

Guerrero: municipal police of Iguala fire on students of the Rural Normal School of Ayotzinapa. Six have died (11 October 2014)

Guerrero: Impunity continues in the Ayotzinapa case (17 May 2013)

Guerrero: Extrajudicial execution of students from the Rural Normal of Ayotzinapa (21 December 2011)

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Chiapas: the Las Abejas Civil Society demands justice for Ayotzinapa

November 3, 2014

(@CDHFBC)

(@CDHFBC)

On 22 October, in observance of the monthly commemoration of the Acteal massacre of 1997 that left 45 dead, the Las Abejas Civil Society published a communique condemning the events in Ayotzinapa, highlighting that “to our list of murderers we now add the names of Enrique Peña Nieto, Ángel Aguirre Rivero, José Luis Abarca, and all others involved in the disappearance and murder of the normalist students.” Las Abejas affirmed that it is “a crime of State and a crime against humanity, like what was committed here in Acteal.”

Las Abejas expressed their solidarity with the relatives of the disappeared students, expressing that “We know the pain–we have lived it, because we also lost our children, parents, and siblings.  We know how the parents and relatives of the students of Ayotzinapa feel.  Humbly, and with much respect, we embrace you with our hearts, from Acteal, taking into account our own capacities.  We support you and demand together with you that your children reappear and return home.”

Las Abejas also mentioned in their communique other violent and unjust situations, such as the incarceration in Sonora of Mario Luna, spokesperson for the Yaqui people, and the plundering represented by the highway and mining megaprojects that operate on the lands of indigenous peoples.

For more information (in Spanish):

Justicia por Ayotzinapa, !Vivos los llevaron, Vivos los queremos!(Comunicado de la Sociedad Civil Las Abejas, 22 de octubre de 2014)

Sobrevivientes de Acteal: exigimos al Estado no permitir otra masacre, y no le importó (SinEmargo, 23 de octubre de 2014)

Realizan paro en 14 normales de Chiapas en apoyo a Ayotzinapa(Proceso, 23 de octubre de 2014)

For more information from SIPAZ (in English):

Chiapas: New communique from Las Abejas, five years after the release of those responsible for the Acteal massacre (2 September 2014)

Chiapas: Las Abejas Civil Society against the “Proposed Hydrocarbon Law” (28 June 2014)

Chiapas: indigenous organizations and communities also affected by “counterinsurgency and war of extermination” express their solidarity with the EZLN (9 June 2014)

Chiapas: Las Abejas Civil Society challenges Mexican justice system and continues demanding justice (2 May 2014)


Guerrero: Contradictory versions regarding findings from graves in Iguala three weeks after the forced disappearance of 43 students from Ayotzinapa – protests are radicalized

October 25, 2014

Protesta ante caso Ayotzinapa (@pocamadrenews.blogspot.com)

Protest for the Ayotzinapa case (@pocamadrenews.wordpress.com)

More than three weeks after the forcible disappearance of 43 students from the Raúl Isidro Burgos Rural Normal School of Ayotzinapa, Guerrero, their whereabouts are still unknown.  6 mass-grave sites have been identified containing at least 28 cadavers.  According to Jesús Murillo Karam, head of the Federal Attorney General’s Office (PGR), the DNA evidence does not match that of the 43 students.  Argentine specialists who joined the work to identify the bodies that have been located have claimed that this conclusion cannot be definitively reached yet, and that an additional 15 days to 2 months would be required for them to present their conclusions.  For their part, relatives of the disappeared students and communal police from the Union of Peoples and Organizations of Guerrero State (UPOEG) have located four new grave-sites.

In the meanwhile, protests continue both in Guerrero, as in other parts of the Mexican Republic.  Teachers from the State Coordination of Educational Workers of Guerrero (CETEG) and comrades of the students occupied banks and radio stations in Chilpancingo.  One day prior, governmental offices burned in the same city.  The protests have been increasingly radicalized, leading state governor Ángel Aguirre Rivero to report that mayors of 16 of the 81 municipalities of the state decided to suspend activities in said municipalities on Friday 17 October so as to “avoid all types of confrontations,” making reference to the protests that were expected to demand the presentation of the disappeared students.

The Ayotzinapa case has also generated repudiation outside of Mexico.  On 12 October, the representative of the European Union (EU) condemned the violent acts in the Tlatlaya municipality, Mexico State (wherein 22 civilians died, 14 due to gunfire and 8 other due to executions carried out by 3 soldiers after they surrendered on 30 June), a well as the crimes committed against students in the Iguala municipality of Guerrero.

For more information (in Spanish):

18 ayuntamientos de Guerrero cierran ante protestas por el caso Ayotzinapa (CNN México, 16 de octubre de 2014)

 Y luego de 19 días, con 50 detenidos y 10 fosas, los 43 siguen desaparecidos (Sin embargo, 15 de octubre de 2014)

Halla la UPOEG cuatro fosas y una osamenta de mujer en el cerro Gordo, en Iguala (El Sur de Acapulco, 15 de octubre de 2014)

Miles de universitarios exigen justicia por caso Ayotzinapa (La Jornada, 15 de octubre de 2014)

Equipo argentino refuta a la PGR: no identifica aún cuerpos de fosas de Iguala. (Proceso, 14 de octubre de 2014)

La Unión Europea expresa su preocupación por los casos Tlatlaya e Iguala (CNN México, 12 de octubre de 2014)

For more information from SIPAZ (in English):

National/International: Multiple mobilizations and marches for the “Pain” and “Rage” of Ayotzinapa (12 October 2014)

Guerrero: municipal police of Iguala fire on students of the Rural Normal School of Ayotzinapa. Six have died (11 October 2014)

Guerrero: Impunity continues in the Ayotzinapa case (17 May 2013)

Guerrero: Extrajudicial execution of students from the Rural Normal of Ayotzinapa (21 December 2011)


Guerrero: Press-conference in Mexico City to demand release of CRAC-PC prisoners

September 15, 2014

Pres@s de la CRAC-PC de Guerrero (@CENCOS archivos)

On 4 September, a press-conference was held in Mexico City as part of the activities of the Women’s Committee #FreeNestora which seeks the liberation of Nestora Salgado and other prisoners belonging to the Communal Police of the Regional Coordination of Communal Authorities (CRAC-PC) in Guerrero.

Mothers, daughters, and wives of the communal police officers who have been imprisoned were present, as was a delegation of women from the CRAC-PC, which announced its formal affiliation with the #FreeNestora Women’s Committee, which was founded in August to demand Salgado’s release. Nestora Salgado is being held in a maximum-security prison in Tepic, Nayarit.  Though the federal charges she had faced were dropped in April, it has been denounced that the state government of Aguirre Rivero has added further charges to her on four separate occasions, including 48 kidnappings, though “no one knows who these people are who were supposedly kidnapped.”

Other irregularities and violations of due process were denounced, including the conditions faced by the imprisoned communal leaders.  Also present at the event was the Front of Resistance of Los Ángeles, which shared letters from two senators and seven congressional representatives from the U.S. that called on Secretary of State John Kerry to immediately attend to the case of Nestora Salgado.

Beyond this, there was denounced the lack of adequate response to the demands of the victims of tropical storm Manuel (2013).  Edith Herrera, member of CRAC-PC, denounced that the aid promised by the government has not arrived to the Mountain region of Guerrero.  She claimed that more than 129 billion pesos for the “New Guerrero” plan were used for “political means,” leaving the region “abandoned [and] plundered.”  She indicated furthermore that, with the Crusade against hunger, soldiers entered several communities on the pretext of installing communal eateries.  Since August, greater conditions have been placed on women who benefit from the “Opportunities” welfare program, because several women had been injected with contraceptives as a condition.  The claim is that this means amounts to an “extermination” of the people.

For more information (in Spanish):

Congresistas estadunidenses exigen la excarcelación de Nestora Salgado(La Jornada, 5 de septiembre de 2014)

Exigen mujeres la liberación de Nestora y de los presos políticos de la entidad (El Sur, 5 de septiembre de 2014)

Gobierno de Guerrero, responsable de que Nestora siga presa(CimacNoticias, 5 de septiembre de 2014)

For more information from SIPAZ (in English):

Guerrero/National: Emergence of Committee of Women for the Liberty of Nestora Salgado (2 September 2014)

Guerrero: soldiers and policemen burst into the La Concepción Commmunity after a Cecop assembly in which the case of Marco Antonio Muñoz Suástegui was reported on (29 August 2014)

Guerrero: 14 organizations march in favor of release of CECOP’s Marco Antonio Suástegui Muñoz (20 July 2014)

Guerrero: Arrest of a leader of the opposition to the La Parota Dam (23 June 2014)

Guerrero: Navy kidnaps coordinator of CRAC en Olinalá (13 September 2013)


Guerrero: commemoration of the 16th Anniversary of the El Charco Massacre in demand of justice

June 13, 2014
@CIMAC Noticias

@CIMAC Noticias

On June 7, various social organizations marched to commemorate the 16th anniversary of the El Charco Massacre, near Ayutla de Los Libres, where on June 7, 1998, eleven people were killed by soldiers of the Mexican Army.

Jose Rosario Marroquin, director of the Miguel Agustin Pro Juarez Human Rights Center (PRODH), said that “impunity prevails in this case, there is no advance, only two or three spectacular actions, but in the end there is nothing concrete although justice has been demanded for several years. There is nothing that clarify the facts; there is no will from the government to do it. “

Eleven people were killed in the massacre among a group of 70 Mixteco indigenous persons who met in the elementary school in El Charco to discuss the situation of marginalization and poverty in their communities. Mario Palma, one of the survivors of the massacre explained “We had asked commissioners and representatives of the peoples of the region to organize and develop productive projects because we couldn’t endure much more poverty and marginalization provoked by the government. There were no health centers, doctors, schools, or field support. That’s what we were talking about when the people of the government arrived.”

Efren Chavez Cortes, another survivor, said, “Nothing has changed in El Charco in 16 years. There remains the same poverty, the same neglect of Mixteco indigenous peoples and, worse, governor Angel Aguirre Rivero has divided the CRAC- PC. In conclusion, there has been no justice (…) The government only gives pure palliatives. There is no development strategy in the communities.” He added that “the case was presented to other institutions such as the Inter-American Commission on Human Rights (IACHR), for the summary execution of the compañeros, because they had surrendered. Here the people who were murdered had surrendered and were unarmed.”

“[The] person who is guilty of all is Angel Aguirre Rivero, who was governor at that time as he is today. Therefore, he should be in jail,” said Nazario Gatica, one of the survivors.

During the march, the cartels also demanded the release of the members of the Community Police-Regional Coordination of Communal Authorities (CRAC-PC), who are imprisoned at present.

For more information (in Spanish):

Exigen ONG y personalidades a la Coidh atender ya el caso de matanza de El Charco (La Jornada, 6 de junio de 2014)

En la matanza de El Charco murieron 100 militares, dicen (La Jornada, 7 de junio de 2014)

Sobreviviente de El Charco desmiente versión oficial; murieron 10 militares, dice (La Jornada Guerrero, 7 de junio de 2014)

En El Charco se asesinó a la gente rendida y desarmada, narra uno de los sobrevivientes (La Jornada, 8 de junio de 2014)

A 16 años, en El Charco lo único que cambió es el partido en el poder: Cortés (La Jornada Guerrero, 8 de junio de 2014)

For more information from SIPAZ (in English)

Guerrero: Presentation of the Observation Mission Report “A light against impunity” (April 10, 2014)

Guerrero: 18th anniversary of the Aguas Blancas massacre (July 19, 2013)

Guerrero: 14th anniversary of the El Charco massacre (June 17, 2012)


Guerrero: Harassment and attacks on individuals and organizations in favor of the decriminalization of abortion and the right to decide

June 12, 2014
Womens' Rights are also Human Rights

Women’s Rights are also Human Rights

Organizations and human rights organizations have denounced the harassment, insults, and aggressions suffered by feminist groups, activists, and government agencies that have positioned themselves in favor of the proposed initiative to decriminalize abortion in the state of Guerrero. This initiative was sent by Governor Angel Aguirre to the local Congress in May.

The director of the Guerrero Institute of Human Rights, Silvia Castillo, explained that women who defend their right to decide have been physically and verbally attacked by conservative groups. For example, at a recent forum, one female member of the Institute was beaten for expressing her support to the initiative.

Moreover, Rosario Herrera Ascencio, Secretary for the Women in Guerrero (Semujer), reported having been threatened by local members of the Institutional Revolutionary Party (PRI) and the National Action Party (PAN), who have also disqualified the Secretariat: “There is a struggle against the secretariat both by Congress members and people of Provida (…) They can not silence our voices with their threats; I will be very respectful of the decisions of the Congress, but I will defend the initiative that aims to ensure equality, life, and safety for all the women of the entity whom I represent. “

Finally, local media reported that workers at the service of PRI and PAN deputies have impeded interviews with activists and experts who attended the forums in the framework of the Congress debates, so as to prevent the spreading of information about the importance of decriminalizing abortion.

For more information (in Spanish)

Amenazan a promotores de la despenalización del aborto en Guerrero (Proceso, 4 de junio de 2014)

Hostigan PRI y PAN a quienes apoyan despenalización de aborto (CIMAC Noticias, 4 de junio de 2014)

For more information from SIPAZ (in English)

Guerrero: State government presents initiative to legalize abortion (May 18, 2014)


Guerrero: Attack by governor’s bodyguard on journalist from El Sur

May 2, 2014

Brenda Escobar (@yancuic.com)

Brenda Escobar (@yancuic.com)

The National Commission on Human Rights (CNDH) has initiated an investigation into the attacks perpetrated against journalist Brenda Escobar, a correspondent for the daily El Sur.  On 21 April, the reporter publicly denounced that security personnel for Governor Ángel Aguirre Rivero had beaten her upon her approach to the governor to record the collective interview he was giving at that time.  She noted that “despite that the governor was mere meters from the security cordon his bodyguards had made to prevent my approaching their boss, he ignored me when on numerous occasions I yelled at him telling him that his escorts would not let me pass; I even asked his private secretary, Armando Añorve, to authorize my crossing through the security line, but he replied that the governor was already being interviewed and then, ‘no, not you’ […].  I insisted that they let me pass through the line, but what the bodyguards did was grab me until asphixiation and then another elbowed me in the stomach.”

Angulo Osorio, director general of the newspaper, reported that governor Ángel Aguirre called the paper personally and committed to take measures so as to ensure that attacks by his bodyguards against journalists not happen again.

Since the beginning of the year, the international organization Article 19 has registered 66 attacks on the press in Mexico, representing 16 more than took place in the same period of 2013.  It has reported that the most dangerous and violent states for journalists are Veracruz, Mexico City, Guerrero, Oaxaca, and Sinaloa.

For more information (in Spanish):

Investiga la CNDH agresiones contra periodistas en Guerrero y Sonora(Proceso, 22 de abril de 2014)

Indaga CNDH agresión a periodistas en Guerrero y Sonora (El Universal, 22 de abril de 2014)

Guaruras agreden a reportera de El Sur frente al gobernador (El Sur, 22 de abril de 2014)

Abre la CNDH una investigación por la agresión de escoltas del gobernador a reportera de El Sur (El Sur, 23 de abril de 2014)

Artículo 19 reporta 66 agresiones a la prensa en México en tres meses; Veracruz, DF y Guerrero, los más violentos (Sin embargo, 23 de abril de 2014)

For more information from SIPAZ (in English):

National: Harassment of home of director of Article 19 shortly before publication of report “Dissent in silence: violence against the press and criminalization of protest, Mexico 2013” (28 March 2014)