Mexico: proposal from future AMLO government – Mayan Train to tour the southern states of the country and attract more tourism

September 15, 2018

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In the multiple proposals of his future government, Andrés Manuel López Obrador, president-elect of Mexico, proposed a project for the construction of a tourist railway in the Yucatan Peninsula (communicating Chiapas, Campeche, Quintana Roo, Yucatan and Tabasco) that from the electoral campaign is called the «Mayan Train».

It seeks to communicate the main archaeological centers of the Mayan culture in five states of the Mexican southeast. Thus, it pretends yp detonate the economic development of the main regional tourist destinations such as Cancún, Tulum, Calakmul, Palenque and Chichen Itzá.

López Obrador has indicated that with this railroad Mexico will have “a modern, tourist and cultural train.” “It is a very important work because it is going to communicate one of the most important cultural regions in the world. There is not a region with as much cultural richness as this region of the flowering of the great Mayan culture“, he said.

The president-elect of Mexico has estimated that the Mayan train will cost between 120,000 and 150,000 million pesos (from 6,200 to 7,800 million dollars) and that the work will be completed in four years. “To finance this program, the funds collected from the tourism tax will be used, as it will not be enough, a call will be made to seek a partnership with the private initiative, so that it will be a mixed investment”, he explained when proposing that the construction may begin next year.

For its part, the National Institute of Anthropology and History of Campeche (INAH) has expressed that it considers important that the layout of the new train might be subject to a consultation with the indigenous peoples whose natural and cultural heritage could be affected.

For more information in Spanish:
México: así es el ambicioso proyecto del Tren Maya que propone AMLO y tiene un costo de miles de millones de dólares, BBC, 23 de agosto de 2018

INAH llama a consulta con pueblos indígenas para trazo de Tren Maya (La Jornada, 20 de agosto de 2018)

López Obrador quiere impulsar el turismo en México con la construcción del Tren Maya, El País, 14 de Agosto de 2018

Anuncia AMLO ampliación del proyecto del Tren Maya, La Jornada, 14 de agosto de 2018

For more information about SIPAZ:

National: Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador New President Elect in Mexico July 17, 2018


Chiapas: Misopá ejido denounces unauthorized exploratory work by CONAFOR

March 22, 2015

Municipio de Tila, foto de archivo @ SIPAZ

Tila municipality, archive photo @ SIPAZ

On 3 March, a denunciation was made public by the Misopa Chinal ejido, Tila municipality, which pertains to the People United in Defense of Electrical Energy (PUDEE) and adheres to the Sixth Declaration of the Lacandon Jungle, which accuses the National Forest Commission (CONAFOR) of having entered “to our ejidal lands” to carry out studies and explorations: “they seek to apply the badly named agrarian reforms in our lands and territories.”

The denunciation mentions that on 27 February, several people arrived representing “the AMAREF S.A. de C.V. firm […] to work in the states of Tabasco, Chiapas, Campeche, Yucatán, and Quintana Roo.”   The ejido declared that said firm has been contracted by CONAFOR and “has as its proposal to extract information regarding the conditions of trees, foliage, and soils” to carry out a reforestation in the area.  On 28 February, the ejidatarios of the 7 annexes of Misopa Chinal ejido expressed their disagreement with the “foreign persons in our ejido” doing this type of work, and they added that “the ejidatarios can plant trees from the region that are desired to manage their lands and territories.”  They also asked the authorities not to enter with their equipment “which have been taken by the ejidal assembly.”  The communique indicates that “we will hold the bad government of EPN responsible for any type of demand made against the ejidatarios and the ejidal authorities.  We never requested the presence of these people.”

For more information (in Spanish):

Ejido Misopá denuncia exploraciones no autorizadas de CONAFOR en su territorio (Chiapas Denuncia Pública, 3 de marzo de 2015)

Ejido Misopá denuncia exploraciones no autorizadas de CONAFOR en su territorio (Red Nacional de Organismos Civiles de Derechos Humanos, 3 de marzo de 2015)


Chiapas/National: Bishops of southern Mexico pronounce themselves on the “drama of migration”

February 8, 2015

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At the end of January, the Episcopalian Pastoral Commission for Human Mobility, part of the Conference of the Mexican Episcopals (CEM), held a three-day meeting in Tapachula with the participation of nine bishops working in the southern states of Chiapas, Tabasco, Yucatán, Oaxaca, Campeche, and Veracruz. At the end of the meeting, in the document entitled “No to Indifference before the Drama of Migration,” the bishops pronounced themselves, declaring that “the Church is not indifferent to this drama.  The constant calls from the Pope and the bishops in light of this reality are a voice for the conscience of Christians and those who should offer efficient responses to society before this situation.  This is a voice that is lamentably not heard, above all by those who with their criminal practices make each day that passes more painful and more insecure for so many of our Central America brothers.”

Furthermore, they emphasized that “to the authorities we want to remind them to address the question of migration with more gravity in all aspects: above all, working decisively to promote dignified sources of work, the only way forward to eradicate poverty, which is a fundamental factor in this human drama.  It is urgent moreover to find and guarantee physical and legal security for those who transit through our territory.  Hospitality and the human values of Mexicans cannot be allowed to continue deteriorating due to external political interests or pressures.  The policy in this country should be defined by the values and principles of solidarity and respect for human life and dignity, as enshrined in our Constitution.”

For more information (in Spanish):

Pronunciamiento del CEM No a la indiferencia ante el drama de la migración (30 de enero de 2015)

Piden obispos a México y EU abrir las fronteras (Milenio, 30 de enero de 2015)

Obispos repudian plan Frontera Sur (Proceso, 30 de enero de 2015)

Piden obispos mayor atención y seriedad al tema de migración (Chiapas Paralelo, 31 de enero de 2015)

Infructuoso, el Plan Frontera Sur: obispos (La Jornada, 31 de enero de 2015)

For more information from SIPAZ (in English):

Mexico/Chiapas: Caravan of Central American Mothers, “Bridges of Hope,” in San Cristóbal (16 December 2014)

National/Chiapas: Massive raids against migrants and attack on human-rights defenders (3 May 2014)

National: Migrant pilgrimage arrives in Mexico City (2 May 2014)

Mexico: Caravan of Central American mothers seeking out their children(2 November 2012)


National/Chiapas: Program of the First Global Festival for Resistance and Rebellion against Capitalism

December 15, 2014


Imagen @ Mujeres y la Sexta org

Image @ Mujeres y la Sexta org

On 26 November, the National Indigenous Congress (CNI) and the Zapatista Army of National Liberation (EZLN) announced the general program of the forthcoming First Global Festival for Resistance and Rebellion against Capitalism, which will begin in the community of San Francisco Xochicuautla, in Mexico State, on 20 December, to continue in the state of Morelos in the community of Amilcingo on 22 December, the day that will also commemorate 17 years since the Acteal massacre.

In Mexico City, the Grand Cultural Festival will be held from 24 to 26 December, while the third “sharing” will take place in Monclova, Campeche, on 27 December.  From 31 December to 1 January 2015, the Festival of Anti-Capitalist Rebelliousness and Resistance will be held in the caracol of Oventic in Chiapas.

Lastly, on 2 and 3 January, the plenary of conclusions, agreements, and pronunciations will be held at CIDECI-UniTierra Chiapas in San Cristóbal de Las Casas.  In this way, summaries of each sharing will be provided, as will the conclusion.

For more information (in Spanish):

Programa del Primer Festival Mundial de las Resistencias y las Rebeldías Contra el Capitalismo (Enlace Zapatista, 26 de noviembre de 2014)

For more information from SIPAZ (in English):

Chiapas: EZLN and members of CNI united against the plundering of their peoples (29 August 2014)


National: Mobilizations at the national level against high-electricity prices

February 12, 2013

Imagen de la movilización en la Ciudad de México @ La Jornada

On 7 February there were carried out protests and blockades in the capital and in several states of Mexico to protest high-electricity prices.  The mobilization had been organized by the National Network of Civil Resistance against High-Electricity Prices, the National Alliance of Electricity Users (ANUEE), and the Mexican Union of Electricians (SME).  The marches and actions were held in Chiapas, Campeche, Oaxaca, Veracruz, Guerrero, Morelos, Puebla, Tlaxcala, San Luis Potosí, Querétaro, Chihuahua, and Mexico City.  The principal demand of these protests was a change in energy policy that would include just prices, access to electricity as a human right, and the generation of sustainable energy from the people.  Furthermore, there was demanded the cancellation of wind-energy, mining, and hydroelectrical projects, as well as end to the criminalization of social protest.

It should be mentioned that during these protests in Chiapas, Nataniel Hernandez, director of the Digna Ochoa Center for Human Rights, was arrested while he was in a meeting with the regional sub-delegate for the government.  He was released during the evening, without any sort of explanation regarding the grounds for his arrest.

For more information (in Spanish):

La Jornada: Tarifas justas de luz y fin a la presión, exigen miles en marcha (08/02/2013)

La Jornada: O comemos o pagamos, grito en jornada nacional contra altos cobros (08/02/2013)

La Jornada: Padecen usuarios de la CFE indefensión y maltrato al quejarse por altos cobros (08/02/2013)

Proceso: Policías retienen siete horas al director del centro Digna Ochoa en Chiapas (07/02/2013)

Proceso: Protestan en Oaxaca por altas tarifas de luz (07/02/2013)

Koman Ilel: PRIMER REPORTE MOVILIZACIÓN NACIONAL CONTRA ABUSOS DE CFE (07/02/2013)

For more information from SIPAZ (in English):

Mexico: National day of protests against high electricity prices (4 April 2012)

Chiapas: PUDEE denounces harassment and electricity cut-off by CFE (24 March 2012)

Chiapas: PUDEE denounces harassment by the CFE (25 February 2011)

Campeche: Arrest of activist campaigning against high electricity prices (26 May 2010)

Mexico: AI Declares Activists against High Electricity Tariffs Prisoners of Conscience (10 March 2010)

 

Oaxaca: Detención y liberación posterior de la defensora Bettina Cruz Velázquez (23/02/2012)

Chiapas: Manifestaciones contra las altas tarifas de la luz (13/09/2011)


Campeche: Arrest of activist campaigning against high electricity prices

May 27, 2010

On 15 May, in the city of Escárcega, units of the Federal Attorney General’s Office (PGR) detained Octavio Solís Cortés, member of the civil resistance movement against high electricity prices in Candelaria in the state of Campeche.  He was taken to the Public Ministry in the city of Campeche, capital of the state of the same name, and thereafter to the San Francisco Koben prison.  In accordance with the denunciation made by the Movement of Popular Culture of Mérida (Yucatán), the “arrest of comrade Octavio Solís has occurred the same day on which took place the National Meeting of Resistance in Candelaria, when compañeros Sara, Joaquín, and Guadalupe began a hunger-strike aimed at pressuring the courts to resolve the ruling that was granted them previously, that they stop delaying doing so.”

It should be remembered that on 10 July 2009, the PGR detained Sara López González, Joaquín Aguilar Méndez, Guadalupe Borjas Contreras, Elmer Castellanos Velázquez, and Guadalupe Lizcano Gómez, from the aforementioned movement; they too were held in Koben prison, and accused of illegal privation of liberty, among other charges.  Elmer Castellanos Velázquez and Guadalupe Lizcano were released on bail on 23 September 2009.  Amnesty International declared Sara López, Joaquín Aguilar, and Guadalupe Borjas prisoners of conscience on 4 March 2009, as it considered that the imprisonment of the three activists was due to their struggle against the excessively high electricity prices that the parastatal Federal Commission on Electricity (CFE) charges.  Amnesty also believes the charges that the three face to have been fabricated.

For more information (in Spanish):

For more information from SIPAZ (in English):


Campeche: National Meeting for the Liberation of Political Prisoners of Candelaria, Campeche

October 27, 2009

Imagen de la conformación de la Red Nacional de Resistencia Civil a las Altas Tarifas de la Energía Eléctrica, mayo de 2009

On September 13th, 14th, and 15th, the National Meeting for the Liberation of Political Prisoners of Candelaria was held in Campeche, in the capital of the same state, in solidarity with the five prisoners of Candelaria and the villagers of San Antonio Ébula, all from the state of Campeche. The five detainees from the “Movement in opposition to high electrical energy prices” in Candelaria who had been violently detained this past July 10th, accused of kidnapping, among other crimes, were freed on bail on September 23rd.

The meeting, in which six national organizations and twenty-eight organizations from nine Mexican states participated, among them several from the state of Chiapas, also brought solidarity with the villagers of San Antonio Ébula, who have been deprived of their own land by people contracted by the local businessman Eduardo Escalante with the complicity of the state government.

In the public pronouncement made at the end of the meeting, they emphasized that the encarcerated of Candelaria are “political prisoners of conscience because they have been deprived of their freedom for defending the rights of the people,” since they demand a just rate for electrical energy service. Moreover, the participants of the meeting denounced the conduct of the law enforcement authorities who, “have violated the human rights of our ‘compañeros’ . . . and, above all, have been clear in criminalizing civil disobedience and any other kind of organization that tries to defend the rights of the people.” They announced that they will take action to pressure and demand the freedom of the detainees. This means that a large part of the organizations participating in the meeting will become part of the National Network of Civil Resistance to High Electrical Energy Prices, which was formed last May in San Cristóbal de Las Casas, and who have made mutual solidarity one of their principles in the vein of “One for all and all for one.”

In this context, Elmer Castellanos Velázquez and Guadalupe Lizcano Gómez were freed on bail due to the resolution of their legal defense’s appeal. Sara López González, Joaquín Aguilar Méndez and Guadalupe Borjas Contreras are still in jail, each of whom are from the Candelaria “Movement in opposition to high electrical energy prices.”

For more information (in Spanish)

PRONUNCIAMIENTO POLITICO DEL ENCUENTRO NACIONAL POR LA LIBERACION DE LOS PRESOS POLITICOS DE CANDELARIA

Acción Urgente: Libertad inmediata e incondicional a l@s pres@s políticos de Candelaria, Campeche