Oaxaca: SCJN is called to protect the collective rights of the Zapotec community and to cancel the permits of the Southern Wind-Energy Corporation

November 2, 2018
cuartooscuro

Juchitán (@Cuartooscuro)


In a statement published on October 25, organizations that defend human rights and the environment called on the Supreme Court of Justice of the Nation (SCJN) to
“strictly adhere to the highest standards of prior consultation in its sentence, to protect the Collective rights of the Zapotec community, and to order the cancellation of the permits granted to the Southern Wind-Energy Corporation (Eólica del Sur) for the construction of a wind turbine park in Juchitán, Oaxaca, as well as to impose fair reparation measures for the community. ” Next October 31, the highest judicial body will decide whether the human rights of the Zapotec community in the case were violated or not.

It is worth remembering that last May the SCJN attracted the actions for legal protections (amparos) filed by more than a thousand members of the Zapotec community of Juchitán regarding the consultation that was carried out to implement the project of the subsidiary of the transnational Mitsubishi, which, despite the pending litigation, has continued to advance in the construction of the megaproject.

The organizations expressed great concern about the draft resolution that the SCJN intends to present because they fear that a “decision that supports bad practices in indigenous consultations” could be enlisted.

At the press conference in which the statement was presented, Betina Cruz, representative of the Assembly of Indigenous Peoples of the Isthmus of Tehuantepec in Defense of Land and Territory, recalled that since 2014 they oppose this wind farm, “the largest of its kind in Latin America”, since the consultation of the affected communities was given once the company had already obtained the government permits. She noted that currently the Isthmus of Tehuantepec has 1,915 wind turbines, in 24 parks, none installed with prior, free and informed consultations, as established by the Inter-American Court of Human Rights and the UN Special Rapporteur on the rights of Indigenous Peoples.

For their part, members of the Zapotec community have denounced “that they have been criminalized and threatened before, during and after the consultation because of their opposition to the project, so it was never a free process or one done in good faith. Nor was complete information provided on the impacts of the project and its alternatives for the communities. Even the responsible authorities, like the Sener, sought to accelerate the process to endorse the project, in violation of the uses and customs of the community, and leaving pending issues for discussion ».

The organizations encouraged the SCJN “not to discard this unique opportunity to generate a historical precedent in favor of the effective protection of the indigenous peoples rights within the framework of the Energy Reform and to establish clear rules for the government on how to comply with its obligation to consult peoples and communities. Failure to correct its course, would be deepening the serious situation of discrimination experienced by indigenous communities in Mexico and would allow the reform to be implemented in clear violation of human rights.

For more information (In Spanish):

Opositores a Eólica del Sur, en Oaxaca, alertan por posible decisión de la Corte contra derecho de consulta indígena (Proceso, 25 de octubre de 2018)

Solicitan activistas a SCJN cancelar permisos a Eólica del Sur (La Jornada, 25 de octubre de 2018)

Piden a la SCJN cancelar permisos a Eólica del Sur (El Imparcial, 25 de octubre de 2018)

Piden a la Suprema Corte cancelar permisos a Eólica del Sur por violar derechos humanos de comunidades indígenas (OSC, 25 de octubre de 2018)

For more information from SIPAZ:

Oaxaca: Residents of Juchitan win motion to suspend construction of wind-energy park (October 25, 2015)

Oaxaca: Indigenous Zapotecos mobilize themselves over grave violations to right to consultation (September 11, 2015)

Oaxaca: Beginning of consultation regarding wind-energy park in Juchitán (12 November 2014)

Oaxaca: Various denunciations in the Tehuantepec Isthmus from community assemblies organized against wind-farms in their territories (6 September 2014)


Oaxaca: Threats from shock groups in San Dionisio del Mar; alternative plan for wind-energy in the Tehuantepec Isthmus

October 26, 2012

@ tierrayterritorio.wordpress.com

@ tierrayterritorio.wordpress.com

The Assembly of Indigenous Peoples of the Tehuantepec Isthmus in Defense of Land and Territory (APIIDTT), the General Assembly of Communards from San Dionisio del Mar, and the Union of Indigenous Communities of the Northern Zone of the Isthmus (UCIZONI) denounced in a communique published on 14 October that a shock group has threatened to displace the mayor of San Dionisio del Mar.  More, they made public the climate of harassment and death-threats in which they presently find themselves.

The mayoral hall was occupied peacefully by communards of the aforementioned municipality at the beginning of the year as a manifestation of their rejection of the wind-energy park that is planned for construction in the zone.  Against the mayor, they claim that he is “tied together with foreign firms to build the wind project in our territory.”  In accordance with the denunciation, the very day on which the passage of the Caravan of Solidarity with San Dionisio del Mar, “Jorge Castellanos and Ernesto Juárez, ex-delegate and ex-mayor, gave a press-conference in which they expressed that they would impose an ultimatum before the state-government, declaing that if the the problem of San Dionisio cannot be resolved and public forces do not arrive to allow the passage of the workers of the wind-energy firm and liberate the mayoral office […] they will do it themselves on 15 October, without regard to lives or blood spilt.”  They indicated that “these are shock groups that have been identified as paramilitaries, traitors of communities like Juchitan, who are led by PRI officials and those from COCEI-PT […].  Further, there are workers from the CTM union who participate in these aggressions for the promise of a permanent job, given that the work of installing the wind-park now begins.”  It should be mentioned that on 16 October, approximately 200 persons who were involved in blocking the passage of the Caravan on 10 October concentrated themselves in the municipal headquarters toward the end of displacing those who are occupying the mayoral office, but they withdrew at midnight, without any confrontation taking place, in accordance with journalistic information.

In a denunciation published on 14 October, the aforementioned organizations reported on the climate of death-threats and aggressions that has prevailed lately in the zone.  They denounce that on 29 September, Isaúl Celaya was nearly run over as he left the general assembly of the communards of San Dionisio, in the company of Blas Cabrera Rodríguez and Benita Celaya Pablo, injuring his arm.  On 6 October, a march of a PRI group and members of the CTM union made threats against human-rights defenders and those who accompany processes of resistance, specifically against Bettina Cruz Velázquez and Carlos Beas, members of the Assembly of the Peoples of the Isthmus and UCIZONI, respectively.  Beas received a death-threat by phone on 7 October, warning him not to enter San Dionisio del Mar.

Referring to the construction of the wind-energy park, the governor of the state of Oaxaca, Gabino Cué Monteagudo, pronounced himself in favor of the project.  In an interview with media, he explained that the wind-energy park would bring important economic benefits, and that with it Oaxaca would become the first state in Latin America to generate wind-energy.  Cué Monteagudo said that the rejection of the project has to do with the “lack of understanding” among the local peoples; he also expressed that “always when there is investment and the possibility of development, interests emerge; for this reason, Oaxaca does not develop.”

In other news, the Oaxacan Congress approved an accord by means of which it will request the Federal Electricity Commission (CFE) to suspend bidding on a wind-energy park in Ixtepec, so as to allow for a communal project along the same lines that would benefit the local population with 50% of the income received by the sale of the energy.  This project, in accordance with media information, would be carried out in conjunction with the British firm Yansa.  Rosendo Serrano Toledo, federal representative and brother to the mayor of Ixtepec, indicated in a press-conference that the Law for the approval of renewable energy does not allow for communal projects, thus violating the human rights of the possessors of these lands.  He called on the Oaxacan governor to suspend the operation of the plants that have been installed in the Isthmus, given that “they only tricked the communities.”

For more information (in Spanish):

Comunicado sobre amenazas del grupo de choque (14/10/2012)

Denuncia sobre amenazas de muerte (14/10/2012)

La Jornada: Proponen plan eólico alterno para Oaxaca (19/10/2012)

La Jornada: Prevén ataque a opositores a parque eólico (17/10/2012)

For more information from SIPAZ (in English):

Oaxaca: entry of Caravan of Solidarity impeded to San Dionisio del Mar (15 October 2012)

Oaxaca: Meeting for resistance in San Dionisio del Mar, and new threats (21 September 2012)

Oaxaca: Ikoots community denounces invasion by private firm and “rigged” assembly in San Dionisio del Mar; invitation to a Meeting for Resistance (19 September 2012)

Oaxaca: Detention and subsequent release of rights-defender Bettina Cruz Velázquez (7 March 2012)

Oaxaca: Communards of San Dionisio del Mar revoke contract for wind-farm (9 February 2012)


Oaxaca: blockades to impede work on the wind-park in Ikojts territory

October 12, 2012

On 28 September, from 7am to 3pm, residents of San Dionisio del Mar and San Mateo del Mar blockaded roads toward the end of impeding the work of the firm Mareña Renewable in the wind-energy park it is working to build in the zone–this despite the resistance of the peoples in the region who oppose the fact that the government has authorized the project without consulting them.  In a press-release, the General Assembly of San Dionisio del Mar and the Assembly of Indigenous Peoples of the Tehuantepec Isthmus reported that since 25 September “brigades of persons allied and contracted” by the firm “have entered.”  For this reason, communards from San Dionisio del Mar and San Mateo del Mar decided to “blockade the access and not permit that the firm appropriate our ancestral territory.”

For more information (in Spanish):

Comunicado de prensa de las Comunidades Indígenas Ikoots (27 de septiembre de 2012)

Boletín de prensa de la Asamblea General de San Dionisio del Mar  y la Asamblea de Pueblos Indígenas del Istmo de Tehuantepec (28 de septiembre de 2012)

For more information from SIPAZ (in English):

Oaxaca: Meeting for resistance in San Dionisio del Mar and new threats (21 September 2012)

Oaxaca: Ikoots community denounces invasion by private firm and “rigged” assembly in San Dionisio del Mar; invitation to a Meeting for Resistance (19 September 2012)

Oaxaca: Detention and subsequent release of rights-defender Bettina Cruz Velázquez (7 March 2012)

Oaxaca: Communards of San Dionisio del Mar revoke contract for wind-farm (9 February 2012)

Oaxaca: Death-threats against human-rights defenders (4 November 2011)


Oaxaca: Meeting for resistance in San Dionisio del Mar, and new threats

September 21, 2012

Meeting in San Dionisio del Mar, September 2012 (@Centro PRODH)

On 14 and 15 September, there was held a national meeting with the Ikojts nation that is resisting the “San Dionisio” megawind project, financed by Mareña Wind Energy (backed by Japanese, Australian, and Dutch capital) in their land.  More than 300 persons–indigenous people, activists of 25 civil and social organizations from 6 states–participated at the meeting.  In this way, the imposition of the wind megaproject in San Dionisio was denounced, with the claim that it had been done so by means of trickery, aggression, and corruption, provoking divisions and conflicts within the peoples of the region.  During the event, a plan of action was drawn up to include mobilizations and actions of denunciation directed at the transnational firms that, with their energy megaprojects, “are destroying and looting local residents throughout the country.”  For this reason, they demanded that the Inter-American Bank for Development and international firms to cancel funding for the project immediately.  It was also agreed that they will demand that all levels of the government respect the autonomy of the communities to decide on the use of their territory, using public consultation that is free for all indigenous people who are affected by the construction of these megaprojects in their communities.

The Assembly of Indigenous Peoples of the Tehuantepec Isthmus in Defense of Land and Territory (Apitdtt) denounced that on 18 September, “strongly armed individuals, seemingly from the municipal police” arrived at the municipal palace (which has been occupied since February by residents of San Dionisio del Mar who oppose the wind project) to intimidate and threaten the residents who demand the cancellation of the project.  They indicate furthermore that “these acts were carried out with the same manner of impunity and violence as is lived in our state and throughout the whole country.  We see this strategy applied against our comrades from San José del Progreso who oppose a Canadian mine in their territory, to the communards of Cherán in Michoacán who defend their forests, and the communards of Chicomusuelo, Chiapas, who also oppose mining.”

For more information (in Spanish):

Declaración final de San Dionisio del Mar.(15 de septiembre de 2012)

Frente contra megaproyecto eólico en Oaxaca (La Jornada, 14 de septiembre de 2012)

Llevarán a Europa protesta contra proyecto eólico en Oaxaca (Proceso, 17 de septiembre de 2012)

AU: Intimidación, amedrentamiento y hostigamiento por individuos armados a comuneros indígenas en contra del proyecto eólico San Dionisio (Asamblea de Pueblos Indígenas del Istmo de Tehuantepec en Defensa de la Tierra y el Territorio, 19 de septiembre de 2012)

Amenazan presuntos paramilitares a opositores a parque eólico en Oaxaca (La Jornada, 19 de septiembre de 2012)

For more information from SIPAZ (in English):

Oaxaca: Ikoots community denounces invasion by private firm and “rigged” assembly in San Dionisio del Mar; invitation to a Meeting for Resistance (19 September 2012)

Oaxaca: Detention and subsequent release of rights-defender Bettina Cruz Velázquez (7 March 2012)

Oaxaca: Communards of San Dionisio del Mar revoke contract for wind-farm (9 February 2012)

Oaxaca: Death-threats against human-rights defenders (4 November 2011)

Oaxaca: Indigenous individuals from the Isthmus denounce threats by Spanish firm in response to their opposition to planned construction of wind-plants (5 July 2011)


Oaxaca: Harassment by wind-energy firm against residents of San Dionisio del Mar is denounced

April 27, 2012

On 19 April, the Assembly of Indigenous Peoples of the Tehuantepec Isthmus in Defense of Land and Territory denounced in a press release that on 18 April, workers from the Eólica Mareña Renovable firm and from subcontracted firms carried out topographical and preparatory work on land to construct the “Barra Santa Teresa” Wind-Energy park, in the Isla Barra Santa Teresa, which pertains to the San Dionisio del Mar community.  According to the denunciation, the workers “attempted to harass our observation commission by photographing them and asking for the names of the ‘leaders.’  Theyu were left clear that as legitimate owners of the Isla we have the right to demand that they immediately leave our Isla.”  In a press-release, the Assembly warns that if the workers “return the people will take the necessary measures to make the decision of the Assembly be respected.  We will not allow the Wind Park to be installed on our Isla because it endangers our forms of life.  We will defend our rights using all possible means.”

For more information (in Spanish):

Denuncia de la Asamblea de Pueblos Indígenas del Istmo de Tehuantepec en Defensa de la Tierra y el Territorio (19/04/2012)

Noticias Voz e Imagen: Implementan huaves vigilancia para impedir proyecto eólico (21/04/2012)

Noticias Voz e Imagen: Alistan en Oaxaca el mayor proyecto eólico(23/04/2012)

For more information from SIPAZ (in English):

Oaxaca: Detention and subsequent release of rights-defender Bettina Cruz Velázquez (7 March 2012)

Oaxaca: Communards of San Dionisio del Mar revoke contract for wind-farm (9 February 2012)

Oaxaca: Death-threats against human-rights defenders (4 November 2011)

Oaxaca: Indigenous individuals from the Isthmus denounce threats by Spanish firm in response to their opposition to planned construction of wind-plants (5 July 2011)

Oaxaca: Possible conflict regarding wind-energy projects in the Isthmus of Tehuantepec (18 January 2011)


Oaxaca: Five members of the Committee of Resistance to Wind Projects from Unión Hidalgo are arrested

April 2, 2012

(@Ciudadanía-Express)

On the afternoon of 22 March, five members of the Committee of Resistance to Wind Projects from Unión Hidalgo who are associated with the Assembly of the Indigenous Peoples of the Tehuantepec Isthmus in Defense of Land and Territory (APIITDTT) were detained by agents of the state police in that community.  They oppose the Piedra Larga wind-energy park that has been developed by the firm Wind-Development in Mexico (Demex), which is a subsidiary of the Spanish company Renovalía Energy.

The APIITDTT communiqué denounced that “Our comrades who are defending human rights are being charged with the crime of ‘opposition to public works,’ when the project is being carried entirely by PRIVATE interests.  The energy that is sought through development in the community of Unión Hidalgo, like all wind-projects in the region, will be to provide energy to another private firm–in this case, the BIMBO corporate group.  It is in no way a public resource or utility.”

Human-rights organizations indicate the following in light of these arrests: “Newly social protest is criminalized, as is the defense of rights to land and territory in the Tehuantepec Isthmus,” adding that “Today’s arrest is only the latest in a series of intimidational and violent acts that human-rights defenders from Unión Hidalgo have been subjected to.”  They recall that “One month ago was arrested the defender Lucila Bettina Cruz Velázquez in an attempt to put a halt to her defense of the land and territory of the small landowners of Unión Hidalgo.”

On 27 March, in a protest regarding arrest without arrest-orders, members of the community of San Dionisio del Mar and San Francisco del Mar, delegates of the Union of Indigenous Communities of the Northern Zone of the Isthmus (Ucizoni), as well as of Section 22 of the National Educational Workers’ Union carried out a five-hour blockade of the work carried out by the Demex firm.

For more information (in Spanish):

Bloquean trabajos de Demex en parque eólico Piedra Larga (La Jornada, 27 de marzo de 2012)

Eoloeléctricas, obstáculo mortal para aves viajeras (La Jornada, 25 de marzo de 2012)

Los Ikoojt’s y la invasión transnacional (Noticiasnet.mx, 27 de marzo de 2012)

Boletín de prensa de la Asamblea de Pueblos Indígenas del Istmo de Tehuantepec en Defensa de la Tierra y el Territorio (APIITDTT, 23 de marzo de 2012)

Boletín de prensa de OSC de Derechos Humanos, 23 de marzo de 2012

Detiene la policía del estado a cinco integrantes de la Asamblea de Pueblos de Unión Hidalgo (NSS Oaxaca, 22 de marzo de 2012)

For more information from SIPAZ (in English):

Oaxaca: Detention and subsequent release of rights-defender Bettina Cruz Velázquez (7 March 2012)

Oaxaca: Communards of San Dionisio del Mar revoke contract for wind-farm (9 February 2012)

Oaxaca: Death-threats against human-rights defenders (4 November 2011)

Oaxaca: Indigenous individuals from the Isthmus denounce threats by Spanish firm in response to their opposition to planned construction of wind-plants (5 July 2011)

Oaxaca: Possible conflict regarding wind-energy projects in the Isthmus of Tehuantepec (18 January 2011)