Chiapas: Violence against member of Chiapas Center for Women’s Rights is denounced

April 27, 2012

Photo:@ CDMCH

The Chiapas Center for Women’s Rights (CDMHC) and the Peace Network have denounced a new case of violence and discrimination suffered by one of its members in San Cristóbal de Las Casas due to her condition of “gender, class, and ethnicity, for being a woman, indigenous and poor.”  On 12 April, at 5:15am, of the CDMHC’s members was sexually assaulted by a taxi driver, to which she responded by defending herself and succeeding in escaping.  The woman had been going to the transport hub that goes to Ocosingo so as to arrive at the offices of the CDMHC in the Yajalón municipality, where she works.

The CDMHC denunciation adds that “It is also clear that in light of events such as this that has happened to our comrade with the complicity and responsibility of the Mexican State, which bears the burden for all acts of violence against women in its failure to guarantee their security and respect their basic rights, not to take the proper measures to eliminate discrimination against women, and taking on adequate means to modify or change laws, rules, uses, and pracitces that constitute discrimination against women.”

The members of the Peace Network support the demands of the Women’s Center, demanding that “Action be taken–political, social, economic, and legal–that will guarantee the rights of women to lives free of violence.  Down with IMPUNITY, which reproduces violence against women.  We call for an investigation of the events that have been denounced and punishment for those responsible.”

For more information (in Spanish):

Denuncian violencia y acoso hacia mujeres, Cuarto Poder, 19 de abril de 2012

Denuncia Red por la Paz Chiapas, 20 abril de 2012

Chiapas: Urgent action for youth unjustly arrested

March 25, 2012

The social organizations Casa de la Mujer Ixim Antsetic and the Chiapas Center for Women’s Rights denounced that the Mexican minor Ana Laura Sánchez García, 16 years of age, was detained on Wednesday 22 February and taken to the National System for the Wholesome Development of the Family (DIF) in the Palenque municipality.  The next day, her mother arrived, but as she lacked a birth certificate, she presented documents pertaining to her birth and a vaccination card.  Regardless, the DIF officials told her that she needed to bring documents that confirm her as the parent, and that they would hold her daughter for a week.  In any case, on Saturday when the mother returned to bring clothes to her daughter, she learned that the girl had been transferred to the Prosecutorial Office for Migrants in Tapachula.

For more information (in Spanish):

¡MENOR CONFUNDIDA Con centroamericana! (Diario de Chiapas, 19 de marzo)

Acción urgente caso Ana Laura Sánchez García

Chiapas: activities on the International Day against Violence against Women

November 28, 2011

March on 25 November, San Cristóbal de Las Casas. Foto @SIPAZ

On 24 and 25 November in San Cristóbal de Las Casas, there were held several activities to observe the International Day against Violence against Women.  On Thursday 24 there was held a meeting of indigenous and campesina women in the Indigenous Center for Wholesome Training (CIDECI-UNITIERRA) called for by the Center for the Rights of Women in Chiapas and women’s collectives from the highlands, northern, border mountain, and coastal regions  of the state.  Under the banner “Halt the violence of the neoliberal patriarchal capitalist system” and as part of the campaign “Land is not sold; women and men instead hold it, cultivate, and defend it,” some 100 men and women gathered.  In a plenary there was discussed the struggle for land and against the firms that would displace them from their lands.  As a Tseltal indigenous woman said, “We must care for the land so that we are not left without food.”  Many women pronounced themselves against the introduction of transgenic maize which represents a danger for the survival of existing strains.  The cultivation of transgenic maize implies the need to buy new seeds each year because it does not reproduce, while currently used varieties can be used for many years without the need to buy new seeds.  In work groups there was discussed the reasons why women struggle, which struggles they confront, and how to overcome these.

March 25 November in San Cristóbal de Las Casas (@SIPAZ)

At 10am on 25 November there met some 200 women accompanied by men in the Palace of Justice to undertake a march toward the Cathedral Plaza.  The call was made by the Center for the Rights of Women in Chiapas, together with the Independent Movement of Women.  Prepared with banners and different signs, they denounced violence against women as part of structural violence.  Passing by the military base of zone 31, they demanded the cessation of violence against women on the part of soldiers and police both in communities as at checkpoints.  They continued marching as they sang slogans such as “Chiapas, Chiapas is not a barracks; out the army!” and “For life and for peace, soldiers never again.”

March 25 November, San Cristóbal de Las Casas (@SIPAZ)

Upon arriving to the Cathedral Plaza there was read a communiqué that was signed by several organizations which focuses on the structural violence suffered by women as exercised by the government as part of neoliberal policy.  “We denounce that the government allows for the establishment, without any limit, of transnational firms that foment and support the looting of the land and territory of indigenous peoples, favoring the privatization of natural resources, the cultivation of transgenic seeds, the internal division of our communities, migration, unemployment, exploitation, inflation, scarcity of goods and worsening of poverty, thus annulling our possibilities for survival, making us increasingly dependent on the market.”  The communiqué also denounces the negative impacts for women for example in support programs such as Oportunidades and Seguro Popular, bad practices of multinational companies, and once again the introduction of transgenic maize.  It finds the different forms of violence against women and feminicide as “social, cultural, and political problems that demand the adoption of concrete and urgent measures in all aspects of public behavior.”

Later there was carried out a “political performance” in the Cathedral Plaza, with the participation of several independent women as called for by the Global March of Women, Hemispheric Center for Performance, and the Autonomous Lesbian Feminist Political Collective LESBrujas.  By means of te same they denounced both the extreme violence exercised against women and feminicide.  Part of the performance was a march with flowers through the ecclesiastical walkway, under the banner “Alive they were taken; alive we want them back!”  The credo of the struggle of the women’s group that denounces feminicide is “End feminicide, end impunity, not one more woman, not one more murdered!”

For more information (in Spanish):

Comunicado del CD de la Mujer de Chiapas, MIM, CDHFBC e integrantes de LOC (25 de noviembre)

Convocatoria a Performance Político

Marchan mujeres contra la violencia (Cuarto Poder, 26 November)

For more information from SIPAZ (in English):

Oaxaca: Harassment and robbery of offices of Consorcio (14 November 2011)

Demand for end to feminicide in Oaxaca (8 September 2011)

Guerrero – briefs – Tierra Caliente is second-highest national location in number of feminicides; SCJN will analyze recommendations of the Inter-American Court in the case of Radilla (14 September 2010)

Chiapas/Mexico: National and international campaign against judicial harassment directed against and criminalization of human-rights defenders in Mexico

July 1, 2011

In a press-conference, representatives of social movements and civil human-rights organizations, among them the Digna Ochoa Center for Human Rights, the Fray Bartolomé de Las Casas Center for Human Rights, the Fray Matías de Córdova Center for Human Rights, and the Center for the Rights of Women in Chiapas launched on Thursday 23 June the “National and International campaign against judicial harassment and the criminalization of human-rights defenders in Mexico.”  They reported that the objective of this campaign is to demand a true justice and to express opposition to political persecution, repression ,and criminalization.

The Digna Ochoa CDH advocated for the cancellation of juridical threats and unjust penal processes against social activists and communal defenders.  Concretely, it requested the nullification of the investigations against Nataniel Hernández Núñez, director of said Center, who was detained on two occasions in February and March 2011.  Members of the Digna Ochoa CDH and the Autonomous Regional Council of the Coast of Chiapas (CARZCC) emphasized that “it remains clear that the strategy of persecution against the comrade and repression against the people who organize themselves and struggle [continues].  Presently he faces five penal investigations–fabricated–which show yet again that in Mexico it is not justice that exists but impunity which prevails.  The comrade is not alone, nor is anyone [else] who raises one’s voice and organizes oneself in defense of one’s people and rights.”

The Fray matías de Córdova Center for Human Rights has declared that “in accordance with the Digna Ochoa CDH, we have suspended our legal representation of Nataniel Hernández.  We understand the truth and comprehend that a justice system that persecutes human-rights defenders and bases itself in fabricated evidence and failures of office is not justice.  It is thus better to seek other means of social and political defense–as long as the courts are inaccessible to people like Nataniel.”

For more information (in Spanish):

Campaña nacional e internacional contra el hostigamiento judicial y criminalizacion a defensores de DH en México, Cencos 22 June 2011

Exigen justicia contra la persecución política, (Cuarto Poder, 24 June 2011)

Peligroso, defender derechos humanos en México, denuncia el Centro Digna Ochoa, (La Jornada, 21 June 2011)


Audio de la conferencia de prensa, Radio Pozol, 23 June 2011

For more information from SIPAZ (in English):

México: Pronunciations and actions as regards the situation of human-rights defenders in the country and southeastern Mexico (25 March 2011)

Chiapas: director of Digna Ochoa Center for Human Rights detained once again (20 March 2011)

Chiapas: 3 human-rights defenders from the Digna Ochoa Center for Human Rights released from El Amate (8 March 2011)