Chiapas: Believing People of El Bosque march for a halt to violence in their region

June 30, 2015
Pilgrimage in El Bosque (@Radio Pozol)

Pilgrimage in El Bosque (@Radio Pozol)

On June 6, around 2,500 members of the Believing People of El Bosque peregrinated to demand attention to the problems experienced in the region such as violence, corruption, drug trafficking, lack of basic services such as access to health and water potable.

They asked the three levels of government “to put a stop to all the injustices that are on top of our communities, pueblos, and cities,” the “no repetition of events such as the murders of Chabajebal, San Pedro Nichtal-ucum, and Unio´on Progreso, municipalities of El Bosque, Chiapas. As well as massacres like Ateal, Ayotzinapa, Guerrero, Aguas Blancas, etc.”; “a stop to forced disappearances of men, women, and children; a stop to repression”; “a stop to to the imprisonments pf human rights defenders and innocent people”; “the presentation with life of all the disappeared persons of the country”; “justice of the deaths of the children murdered by the IMSS from the community of Pimienta, municipality of Simojovel, Chiapas”; and the immediate liberation of all the political prisoners and unjustly imprisoned.

Participants of this march were members of the Believing People of the neighboring municipality of Simojovel, who maintain demanding justice for the death of Yadira González González and Emmanuel Francisco López, the babies who died in La Pimienta after the application of vaccines from the IMSS last May.

For more information (in Spanish):

Comunicado del Pueblo Creyente de El Bosque (6 d ejunio de 2015)

Peregrina pueblo de El Bosque para decir ¡Ya Basta! (Chiapas Paralelo, 6 de junio de 2015)

Marchan para que cierren cantinas en El Bosque (Diario de Chiapas, 7 de junio de 2015)

For more information from SIPAZ (in English):

Chiapas: Pilgrimage in Simojovel to demand justice and truth amidst deaths of infants (June 9, 2015)

Chiapas: Rise in threats against the priest and members of the Believing People in Simojovel (April 24, 2015)

Advertisements

Chiapas: mining reactivation is reported in the state

March 3, 2015
Demonstration against mining activities, Pantelho, February 2015 (@Espoir Chiapas)

Demonstration against mining activities, Pantelho, February 2015 (@Espoir Chiapas)

In a statement released on February 14, the Human Rights Committee Digna Ochoa in Chiapas affirmed that it had received a copy of a letter addressed to the priest of Simojovel, Marcelo Perez Perez, which was signed by Dr. Juan Carlos Salinas Prieto representative of the Mexican Geological Service and of the firm Geochemistry and Drilling Company SA de CV (GYMSA). In this letter, the priest was asked to intercede with the representations of the indigenous communities “to access their private and communal territories, and where, in a period of time of three months, he “has programmed to carry out geological mapping of the region comprised of the municipalities of Jitotol de Zaragoza, Pueblo Nuevo Solistahuacán, Bochil, San Andrés Duraznal, El Bosque, Simojovel, Huitipán, Tapilula, Rayon, Pantepec, Allende Esquipulas, Las Maravillas, Union Zaragoza, Carmen Zacatal,Álvaro Obregón, Rincon Chamula, Competition, El Bosque, Sabanilla, Tila, Tumbalá, Yajalón, Sitalá, San Juan Cancuc, Pantelhó and Chalchihuitán”.

The Committee Digna Ochoa expressed that it “confirms that the government of Chiapas and mining companies are going for more territories and municipalities in the Northern region and Highlands of Chiapas and that the threat of looting and plunder is at the door of peasants and indigenous territories’ lands. (…) A door is opened to legalize the dispossession of land and resources belonging to hundreds of communities and indigenous and peasants peoples without an effective tool of legal defense such as the community consultation supported by ILO Convention 169”.

On February 11, the Believing People of the parish of Santa Catarina Pantelho organized a demonstration in the county seat of this municipality to announce its total rejection of the company GYMSA arrival.

In the last three governments in Chiapas, 144 mining concessions for exploration or exploitation have been granted (some of them for up to 50 years). Recently, in the natural reserve “El Triunfo”, municipality, and after months of opposition, the landowners gave up some plots to a Chinese company it is said for three million pesos per hectare.

For more information (in Spanish):

Se reactiva amenaza minera en municipios del norte de Chiapas, denuncian (Chiapas Paralelo, 16 de febrero de 2015)

Pantelho se moviliza en contra de los proyectos de minas (Espoir Chiapas, 12 de febrero de 2015)

Amenaza la minería a Chiapas; más de un millón hectáreas concesionadas (Reporte Ciudadano, 10 de febrero de 2015)

Tras meses de oposición labriegos de Chiapas aceptan vender parcelas a una minera china (La Jornada, 8 de febrero de 2015)

Carlos Slim, empresarios extranjeros y presta nombres, los dueños de concesiones mineras en Chiapas (Chiapas Paralelo, 5 de febrero de 2015)

For more information from SIPAZ (in English)

Chiapas: popular rejection of dams and mining projects in the Tapachula, Motozintla, Huixtla, and Huehuetán region (December 17, 2014)

Chiapas: 5 years since the murder of mining critic Mariano Abarca (December 15, 2014)

Chiapas: Third Forum for the Defense and Care of Mother Earth in Chicomuselo (December 6, 2014)



Chiapas: Professor Patishtán returns to his community

December 8, 2013

Alberto Patishtán en El Bosque, 1 de diciembre 2013 @ SIPAZ

Alberto Patishtán in El Bosque, 1 December 2013 @ SIPAZ

Professor Alberto Patishtán Gómez arrived on 30 November to Chiapas, after spending several weeks in radiotherapy at the National Institute for Neurology and Neurosurgery “Manuel Velasco Suárez” in Mexico City to treat a brain tumor which appeared in 2012.  Dozens of indigenous persons from the Believing People organization of the San Cristóbal de Las Casas diocese arrived at the Tuxtla Gutiérrez airport to greet Professor Patishtán, but the authorities prevented them from passing to the waiting hall, arguing that there was no space.  Some of those present felt it unacceptable to be blocked access to Patishtán, as they did not even count a hundred among them.

From the airport the entourage traveled to the Cathedral of San Cristóbal de Las Casas, where Alberto visited the tomb of Bishop Samuel Ruiz García and celebrated mass.  During the event, a communique written by the Believing People was read, saying: “Welcome, brother Alberto.  The call for justice grew among the people, the voices of men and women with just and generous hearts were raised throughout Chiapas and many places in Mexico and, indeed, the whole world; the decisions and denigration of the courts did not silence us; they made themselves blind and deaf to our humble voices, and so indignation and the desire for justice grew within us for you and for all the people, for the indigenous, for the non-indigenous, for the sick, the persecuted, the incarcerated, the disappeared, and the poor.”  It ended by noting “the truth of your unjust sentence and unjust incarceration; now we are here together, you and we, and we are all a bit freer for it.”

The next day, 1 December, Alberto reached his home in the community of San Juan El Bosque. The Tsotsil people of El Bosque welcomed him with the presence of hundreds.  The professor said that he was “not only content but also happy.” Professor Martín Ramírez expressed in the name of the Movement of El Bosque in Defense of the People: “we all won, and we will celebrate another victory.”

For more information (in Spanish):

Después de 13 años, el profesor Patishtán regresa a El Bosque (La Jornada, 2 de diciembre de 2013)

Comunicado del Pueblo Creyente (30 de noviembre de 2013)

Impiden paso a indígenas al aeropuerto en Chiapas; querían recibir a Patishtán (La Jornada, 30 de noviembre de 2013)

“Feliz, contento y sin rencores”, regresa Patishtán a Chiapas (Chiapas Paralelo, 1 de diciembre de 2013)

For more information from SIPAZ (in English):

Chiapas: After 13 years of unjust incarceration, freedom for Patishtán (13 November 2013)

Legal initiative for Amnesty for Alberto Patishtán (4 October 2013)

Chiapas: Rejection of recognition of Patishtán’s innocence. “There is a look of denigration toward the indigenous sector,” says lawyer (4 October 2013)


Chiapas: After 13 years of unjust incarceration, freedom for Patishtán

November 13, 2013

image_preview

Alberto Patishtán, photo @Marco Peláez, La Jornada

On 31 October, after 13 years of unjust imprisonment, Alberto Patishtán was released and celebrated his freedom with his family, friends, and comrades, after having received an official pardon from President Enrique Peña Nieto.  After receiving the document notifying him that he would benefit from this measure, the Tsotsil indigenous man left the clinic in which he found himself at the time.  Gabriela Patishtán Ruiz, Patishtán’s daughter, said that “the struggle which many different organizations and persons have carried out since his unjust arrest has borne fruit.”  Accompanied by his children and grandchildren, the professor in a press-conference declared that “They wanted to close off my light, make it rest–but what happened is that it was multiplied, though they wanted to cover it up.  My struggle illuminated.”

Following the release of the Tsotsil professor, the Fray Bartolome de Las Casas Center for Human Rights released a press-bulletin expressing that the pardon is not sufficient justice for Patishtán.  Among other things, the document demands a public apology from the State and comprehensive reparations for the damages incurred by the Tsotsil professor and his family.  During the afternoon of the same day, there was held a protest in Mexico City to publicly recognize the innocence of Alberto Patishtán.

Patishtán had spent 13 years and four months imprisoned as part of a 60-year sentence after he was accused of participating in the killing of six police during an ambush which took place in El Bosque municipality, Chiapas, in 2000.

For more information (in Spanish):

Ordenan libertad inmediata de Alberto Patishtán (Proceso, 31 de octubre de 2013)

Salí a defender a mi pueblo y me mandaron a la cárcel: Patishtán (La Jornada, 31 de octubre de 2013)

Video: Fui encarcelado por defender a mi pueblo: Alberto Patishtan (Telesur)

Lucha de organizaciones por libertad de Patishtán dio frutos, asegura su hija (La Jornada, 30 de octubre de 2013)

Boletín Centro de derechos Humanos Fray Bartolomé de las Casas (31 de octubre de 2013)

Los riesgos en el indulto de Patishtán (Chiapas Paralelo, 1 de noviembre de 2013)

Blog de Alberto Patishtán

For more information from SIPAZ (in English):

Legal initiative for Amnesty for Alberto Patishtán (4 October 2013)

Chiapas: Rejection of recognition of Patishtán’s innocence. “There is a look of denigration toward the indigenous sector,” says lawyer (4 October 2013)


Legal initiative for Amnesty for Alberto Patishtán

October 4, 2013

Alberto Patishtán @ Moyses Zúñiga

On Wednesday 18 September, there was presented in the Senate a legal initiative to grant amnesty to the indigenous prisoner Alberto Patishtán.  This proposal, advanced by PRD senators Angélica de la Peña and Zoe Robledo Aburto, calls for an “amnesty law for persons against whom has been exercised penal action with regard to the acts which took place in the Simojovel and El Bosque municipalities on 12 June 2000.”

The proposal for amnesty, unlike a pardon, implies that the State “nullify the charges and punitive sentence imposed on the incarcerated party, who has been persecuted, imprisoned, and accused.”  A pardon would not imply that the charges be declared null and void.According to claims made by PRD senators, there can be seen a grave violation of the human rights of Patishtán, given that the authorities of justice have not been able to prove beyond reasonable doubt that the prisoner participated in the acts of which he has been accused and for which he has been condemned to 60 years’ imprisonment.  It should be recalled that on 18 September the judicial branch rejected the motion to recognize Patishtán’s innocence, 13 years into his sentence.

For more information (in Spanish):

Propone PRD en el Senado ley de amnistía a favor de Patishtán (Proceso, 18 de septiembre de 2013)

El PRD pide la amnistía para el indígena y activista Alberto Patishtán (Notimérica-Europa Press, 19 de septiembre de 2013)

For more information from SIPAZ (in English):

Chiapas: Rejection of recognition of Patishtán’s innocence. “There is a look of denigration toward the indigenous sector,” says lawyer (4 October 2013)


Chiapas: Call for Justice and the #Release of Patishtán, from 4 May to 19 June

May 17, 2013

Alberto Patishtán @ Moyses Zúñiga

From 4 May to 19 June, relatives of the prisoner Alberto Patishtán Gómez, the Movement of the People of El Bosque in Favor of the Release of Alberto Patishtán, and other organizations have organized a campaign called “For Justice and the #Release of Patishtan.”  In the blog which contains the information regarding Patishtán Gómez, it is asserted that “the lawyers of professor ALBERTO PATISHTAN have been informed at the Supreme Court for Justice in the Nation that the resolution is still to be awaited […].  In light of this, we believe that during this month of May it is possible to remit the case before the FIRST COLLEGIATE TRIBUNAL which will release its decision immediately.  As a consequence, the resolution as to whether his innocence will be recognized or not could be had in the month of June 2013.”

On 19 June will have passed 13 years since the beginning of the incarceration of professor Patishtán, and it is for this reason that the campaign will be launched.  Beyond this, there will be carried out presentations of the documentary “Alberto Patishtan: Live or Die for Truth and Justice.”  In this sense, there will also be a campaign to sign letters directed to the justices of the First Collegiate Tribunal of the Tuxtla Gutierrez Circuit.  Some of the other actions to be included will be a march every Friday from 10-12pm and from 4-7pm, with the Twitter hashtag #ReleasePatishstán.

For more information (in Spanish):

CONVOCATORIA POR LA JUSTICIA Y LA #LIBERTADPATISHTAN del 4 de mayo al 19 de junio 2013 (Blog Alberto Patishtán, mayo 2013)

Documental: Alberto Patishtán; Vivir o Morir Por la Verdad y la Justicia (Koman Ilel, abril 2013)

For more information from SIPAZ (in English):

Chiapas: Pilgrimage of the Believing People for the release of professor Alberto Patishtán Gómez (23 April 2013)

Chiapas: Petition from the CDHFBC to release Alberto Patishtán (15 April 2013)

Chiapas: Forthcoming actions for the release of Alberto Patishtán (8 April 2013)

Chiapas: “Justice is its opposite,” declares Alberto Patishtán (20 March 2013)


Chiapas: Petition from the CDHFBC to release Alberto Patishtán Gómez

April 15, 2013

Hijos de Patishtán @ Swefor

Children of Patishtán @ Swefor

On 10 April, some 400 persons marched in the El Bosque municipality to demand the release of professor Alberto Patishtán Gómez, who was “unjustly” been incarcerated in prison no. 5 of San Cristóbal de Las Casas for nearly 13 years, accused of having participated in an ambush that resulted in the death of 7 police officers.  “All indigenous people feel incarcerated, rejected, and discriminated against” with his imprisonment, as protestors noted in a letter directed to the magistrates of the First Collegiate Tribunal of the Twentieth Circuit, which shortly will resolve whether or not to release the teacher.  This letter arrived on 11 April, organized by relatives of Patishtan and the Movement of the People of El Bosque in favor of the release of Alberto Patishtán Gómez; it counted approximately 5000 signatures.  For its part, the Fray Bartolome de Las Casas Center for Human Rights (CDHFBC) published petitions for Patishtan on Avaaz.org and Change.org, to be presented before the magistrates.

Several media have noted the juxtaposition of the ordered liberation of 15 persons accused of having participated in the Acteal massacre, as demanded by the First Hall of the Supreme Court for Justice in the Nation (SCJN), which rejected a review of Patishtán’s request for innocence on 6 March.  The notes made by Aristegui Noticias indicate that “the news reflect the different modes of justice in Mexico, where those accused of guilt are released and those accused of innocence are incarcerated.”

Beyond this, the actions for professor Patishtán continue.  Within prison no. 5, Patishtán Gómez announced the close of a second week of hunger-strike that will continue with two silent marches within the prison, on 13 and 14 April.  In solidarity, Enrique Gómez Hernández will be participating in the hunger strike from 11 to 19 April in the Amate prison no. 4 in Cintalapa.  On 19 April is planned a pilgrimage in Tuxtla Gutierrez, the day that Alberto Patishtán will have his forty-second birthday.

For more information (in Spanish):

Carta de Avaaz.org para firmar en español

Carta de Change.org para firmar en español

Entregan a tribunal carta con 5 mil firmas para que libere a Patishtán (La Jornada, 12 de abril de 2013)

Con Patishtán en prisión, todos los indígenas nos sentimos encarcelados  (La Jornada, 11 de abril de 2013)

Libres por orden de la Corte, otros 15 indígenas implicados en el caso Acteal (La Jornada, 11 de abril de 2013)

Patishtan y Acteal: las diferentes varas de la justicia (Aristegui Noticias, 11 de abril de 2013)

Entregan 4 mil 736 firmas a favor de la Libertad de Alberto Patishtán (Chiapas Denuncia Pública, 11 de abril de 2013)

Anuncia 9 días de ayuno Enrique Gomez Hernández Solidario de la Voz del Amate (Chiapas Denuncia Pública, 11 de abril de 2013)

Alberto Patishtán anuncia el termino del ayuno y comparte acciónes para el 13 y 14 de abril (Chiapas Denuncia Pública, 11 de abril de 2013)

In English:

Avaaz petition in English

Change.org petition in English

For more information from SIPAZ (in English):

Chiapas: Forthcoming actions for the release of Alberto Patishtán (8 April 2013)

Chiapas: “Justice is its opposite,” declares Alberto Patishtán (20 March 2013)

México/Chiapas: SCJN rejects review of case of Alberto Patishtán(20 March 2013)

Mexico/Chiapas: Alberto Patishtán should be immediately released, notes Olga Sánchez Cordero (5 March 2013)

Mexico/Chiapas: The SCJN admits the Patishtán case (12 October 2012)