Guerrero: Release of the CECOP spokesperson, Marco Antonio Suastegui

September 11, 2015

Marco Antonio Suástegui (Tlachinollan, archivo)Marco Antonio Suástegui (Tlachinollan)

On 21 August, the spokesperson for the Council of Ejidos and Communities Opposed to the La Parota Dam (CECOP), Marco Antonio Suástegui Muñoz, was released after having been incarcerated for fourteen months. He had been arrested on 17 June 2014 on the charge of having participated together with eight other opponents to the La Parota dam project in a shootout and attempted murder.

The Tlachinollan Mountain Center for Human Rights, which provides him counsel, reiterated in this sense that “the case of Marco Antonio Suástegui is a clear example of how the ministerial power strives to fabricate charges and act swiftly to criminalize him. This they have done also with Nestora Salgado, Gonzalo Molina, Arturo Campos, and the communal police of Ayutla.”

On various occasions after his release, Marco Antonio Suástegui expressed his gratitude for the support he received, even though “justice is still pending.” He also affirmed that the struggle against the La Parota dam will continue, and he pronounced himself before the media in favor of the release of all political prisoners: “We will struggle for Nestora, Gonzalo, Arturo, and all those communal guardians who are unjustly imprisoned. I believe that CECOP has three objectives at this time. The first is the definitive cancellation of the La Parota dam, the second to request release of political prisoners, and the third to promote development in our communities.”

For more information (in Spanish):

Sale de la cárcel Marco Antonio Suástegui; la lucha sigue, declara el líder del Cecop (El Sur de Acapulco, 22 de agosto)

Demanda Suástegui Muñoz liberar a los presos políticos (La Jornada de Guerrero, 22 de agosto de 2015)

Lo reciben en Salsipuedes con lágrimas, aplausos y consignas por la continuación de la lucha contra la presa (El Sur, 22 de agosto de 2015)

La apuesta por la justicia (Centro de Derechos Humanos de la Montaña, Tlachinollan, 24 de prestezaagosto de 2015)

For more information from SIPAZ (in English):

Guerrero: Marco Antonio Suastegui, opponent to the La Parota dam, is ordered to return to a Guerrero prison (8 February 2015)

Guerrero: The Navy has tried to arrest him, denounces brother of CECOP spokesperson (30 December 2014)

Guerrero: Attack on CECOP members leaves 5 dead (6 December 2014)

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

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Guerrero: One year since the arrest of the CECOP leader, Marco Antonio Suastégui

June 29, 2015

Photo @Pueblo Guerrero

Members of the Council of Ejidos and Communities Opposed to the La Parota Dam (CECOP) protested on 17 June at the offices of the Judiciary in Acapulco, where they demanded that authorities from the three levels of government immediately release their leader Marco Antonio Suástegui, alleging his innocence, with this being the reason they will not rest until he is free. Marco Antonio Suástegui, who has been imprisoned for a year, founded the Communal Police in the Common Lands of Cacahuatepec, and for years he opposed the La Parota hydroelectric dam project. Upon the completion of a year since the arrest of the CECOP leader, the Tlachinollan Mountain Center for Human Rights urged the Superior Tribunal for State Justice, based in Acapulco, to resolve the three appeals that have been presented against the prison sentence. The organization denounced that the Tribunal “has delayed its decisions on the appeals for no reason, thus prolonging the process.” It also said that the motions against imprisonment demonstrated violations to due process, including the fact that, at the time that Suastégui declared himself, he was not allowed to have an attorney present.

For more information (in Spanish):

Protestan integrantes de la CECOP; piden la libertad de Marco Antonio Suástegui (Bajo Palabra, 17 de junio de 2015)

Ha dilatado las decisiones sobre los recursos de apelación en el caso de Marco Antonio Suástegui sin fundamento alguno, retrasando el proceso, acusó Tlachinollan (Pueblo Guerrero, 18 de junio de 2015)

CECOP protesta en el poder Judicial en Acapulco (Pueblo Guerrero, 17 de junio de 2015)

Video Libertad para Marco Antonio Suastégui (Tlachinollan)

Caso la Parota (Tlachinollan)

For more information from SIPAZ (in English):

Guerrero: return of CECOP spokesperson to Guerrero prison (23 April 2015)

Guerrero: The Navy has tried to arrest him, denounces brother of CECOP spokesperson (30 December 2014)

Guerrero: Attack on CECOP members leaves 5 dead (6 December 2014)


Guerrero: return of CECOP spokesperson to Guerrero prison

April 23, 2015

Marco Antonio Suastegui (@Tlachinollan 2012)

Marco Antonio Suastegui (@Tlachinollan 2012)

On 31 March, Marco Antonio Suástegui Muñoz, spokesperson of the Council of Ejidos and Communities Opposed to the La Parota Dam (CECOP), was transferred to the La Unión prison in Guerrero state from the maximum-security prison of Tepic, Nayarit, where he had been held since June 2014.  María de Jesús, Muñoz’s wife, indicated that her husband experienced poor conditions for ninth months, lacking medical attention after having been tortured, but she affirmed that “justice was done, because he is innocent and only struggles in favor of his ideals.  We will not rest until he returns free.”

The Tlachinollan Mountain Center for Human Rights, which represents the CECOP spokesperson, denounced in a communique that the “Guerrero state government took an inordinately long time to transfer Marco Antonio to Guerrero by imposing an extraordinary review via the General Director for Social Reinsertion in Guerrero State which was then suspended; still, the Collegiate Tribunal had already admitted it had assessed the case.  These extraordinary legal actions, which contrast with the public messages communicated by the state executive against CECOP, show clear evidence of the lack of political will and the arbitrary use of the juridical system on the part of the Guerrero state government, toward the sole end of continuing the criminalization of human-rights defenders.”

Tlachinollan also demanded that “the state government of Guerrero guarantee the security of Marco Antonio Suástegui within La Unión prison and full access to his relatives and defense-team, as well as to abstain from taking any other action that would violate his rights to an adequate legal defense.”

For more information (in Spanish):

Regresan a Marco Antonio Suástegui al reclusorio de La Unión, procedente de Tepic (El Sur, 1ero de abril de 2014)

Fue torturado en Acapulco y en Tepic nunca tuvo atención médica, denuncia Suástegui (El Sur, 3 de abril de 2014)

Trasladan a penal de Guerrero a defensor comunitario criminalizando por la defensa del territorio (Centro de Derechos Humanos de la Montaña, Tlachinollan, 1ero de abril de 2015)

México debe proteger a Marco Antonio Suástegui Muñoz quien ha sido trasladado a un penal en Guerrero (Amnistía Internacional , abril de 2015)

Traslado a Guerrero de Marco Antonio Suástegui (Front Line Defenders, abril de 2015)

For more information from SIPAZ (in English):

Guerrero: Marco Antonio Suastegui, opponent to the La Parota dam, is ordered to return to a Guerreo state prison (30 de enero de 2015)

Guerrero: The Navy has tried to arrest him, denounces brother of CECOP spokesperson (30 December 2014)

Guerrero: Attack on CECOP members leaves 5 dead (6 December 2014)

Guerrero: Arrest of María de la Cruz Dorantes, CECOP member (25 October 2014)

Guerrero: demand for release of political prisoners in observance of the eleventh anniversary of CECOP (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: Arrest of a leader of the opposition to the La Parota Dam (23 June 2014)


Guerrero: Tlachinollan announces extemporaneous actions from the State to halt the transfer of CECOP spokesperson

March 22, 2015

images

On 12 March, the Tlachinollan Mountain Center for Human Rights denounced in a bulletin that, in an extemporaneous way, the penal director for Guerrero State has submitted a motion to review the motion granted to Marco Antonio Suástegui, spokesperson for the Council of Ejidos and Communities Opposed to the La Parota Dam (CECOP), that would have allowed him to be transferred to a jail within the state.  Tlachinollan indicates that this “denotes the clear lack of political will and the arbitrary use of the juridical system on the part of the state government of Guerrero, toward the sole end of continuing with the criminalization of human-rights defenders.”

On 14 March, some 800 people marched in Acapulco in solidarity with CECOP, which had organized a mobilization to demand the release of Suástegui Muñoz, who has been imprisoned since 17 June 2014 in the federal prison in Tepic, Nayarit, and of María de la Cruz Dorantes, who has been imprisoned in Acapulco since 6 October 2014.  Leaders of Cecop denounced that Rogelio Ortega Martínez, the interim governor, has not observed his commitment to intervening to facilitate the release of Suástegui Muñoz, something which he promised to do on 3 March upon signing a pact of reconciliation in Salsipuedes with leaders of CECOP and relatives of the communard in question.  CECOP warned that, as long as Suástegui Muñoz is not released, political candidates and State functionaries will not be allowed entry to Cacahuatepec.

For more information (in Spanish):

Boletín Retrasa injustificadamente ejecutivo estatal el traslado a Guerrero del defensor comunitario Marco Antonio Suástegui (CDH de la Montaña Tlachinollan, 12 de marzo de 2015)

Marchan estudiantes y maestros en apoyo al Cecop para exigir la liberación de Suástegui (La Jornada de Guerrero, 14 de marzo de 2015)

Falta de voluntad política del gobierno estatal que se apelara el amparo de Suástegui: Tlachinollan (El Sur de Acapulco, 16 de marzo de 2015)

Líder del Cecop, enfermo y amenazado por policías de Iguala en Cefereso de Tepic

For more information from SIPAZ (in English):

Guerrero: Marco Antonio Suastegui, opponent to the La Parota dam, is ordered to return to a Guerrero prison (8 February 2015)

Guerrero: Attack on CECOP members leaves 5 dead (6 December 2014)

Guerrero: Arrest of María de la Cruz Dorantes, CECOP member (25 October 2014)

Guerrero: demand for release of political prisoners in observance of the eleventh anniversary of CECOP (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: Arrest of a leader of the opposition to the La Parota Dam (23 June 2014)


Guerrero: A year after Nestora Salgado’s arrest, organizations demand her immediate release

September 2, 2014

Foto (@SIPAZ)Photo (@SIPAZ)

A year ago, on 21 August 2013, Nestora Salgado García, member of the Regional Coordination of Communal Authorities (CRAC-PC) in Olinalá, Guerrero, was arrested and accused of aggravated kidnapping and organized crime. She was then transferred to the maximum-security prison in Tepic, Nayarit, where she has been held to this day. From prison, she has written, “Remember, my beautiful people, that I am imprisoned.” The last time that her daughter Saira Rodríguez Salgado visited her was on 2 August, when she reported that she found her mother desperate due to the inhumane treatments she received. Saira Rodríguez reported that “this is a punishment against my mother for fighting for her people.”

On the occasion of the first anniversary of her arrest, the National Network of Defenders of Human Rights in Mexico (RNDDHM) published a communique to demand her transfer to a jail in Mexico City as well as adequate attention to her health, in addition to demanding the “immediate and unconditional release of the human-rights defender.” The RNDDHM declared that “we call on the authorities of the federal government and the Guerrero state government to provide security guarantees for human-rights defenders, and we demand the cessation of the impunity of murders and forced disappearances of rights-defenders. We have had quite enough of the criminalization of human-rights defenders and of the social movement in Guerrero.”

The Committee of Women #NestoraLibre initiated the campaign “We are all Nestora,” toward the end of expressing solidarity toward her. In this way, both organizations demanded the release of other political prisoners: 9 members of the CRAC-PC and Marco Antonio Suástegui, spokesperson for the Council of Ejidos and Communities Opposed to the La Parota Dam (CECOP). These arrests, according to the RNDDHM, “evince the political character of penal persecution and the illegal use of federal prisons, using the complicity of the federal government, from which no human-rights defender in Guerrero is exempt.”

For more information (in Spanish):

Me quieren matar o enloquecer, acusa Nestora Salgado; cumple un año en prisión (La Jornada, 21 de agosto de 2014)

Comunicado de prensa: RNDDHM exige libertad inmediata de Nestora Salgado (RNDDHM, 21 de agosto de 2014)

Mujeres crean frente por la libertad de presos políticos (Cimacnoticias, 20 de agosto 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: Tlachinollan celebrates 20 years of struggle in defense of human rights

August 5, 2014

Foto @SIPAZ

In Tlapa de Comofort, Guerrero, on 25 and 26 July, the Tlachinollan Mountain Center for Human Rights celebrated its XX anniversary, with these twenty years being characterized by struggle besides indigenous peoples in defense of their rights.   More than 400 representatives from 85 communities of the Mountain region, together with different organizations and social movements from various states and representatives of international institutions, arrived to attend the forum “From the communal heart of resistance.”  On this occasion Abel Barrera Hernández, director of Tlachinollan, declared that “the criminalization of indigenous peoples has risen, and so has the threats against their lands.  There are attempts to loot [these lands] by means of mining concessions and attempts to build hydroelectric dams.  The situation of life in these communities is worsening due to abuse, looting, and the complacence of the authorities in the face of organized crime.”  Furthermore, he stressed the inequity and lack of attention from the government for indigenous peoples in the region.

At the end of the forum, a march was held toward the city center to demand the release of representatives of the Regional Coordination of Communal Authorities-Communal Police (CRAC-PC) and of the Council of Ejidos and Communities Opposed to La Parota (CECOP), including Nestora Salgado García, Arturo Campos, Gonzalo Molina, and Marco Antonio Suástegui.  Furthermore, members of the Council of Victims of the Mountain of Guerrero demanded that the state government observe its promises to support communities that were affected by the storms that destroyed crops and homes last September.

During the event itself, the importance of collective work was recognized as fundamental for the defense of human rights in the Mountain region, and Abel Barrera Hernández expressed his gratitude to indigenous peoples: “They gave us tortilla, coffee, petate, and shade, and they showed us how to sow communal justice.  For this reason, these twenty years have no sense without you, because you are the fathers, mothers, and founders of Tlachinollan.”

For more information (in Spanish):

Festeja Tlachinollan sus 20 años con una marcha en Guerrero (La Jornada, 27 de julio de 2014)

Reconocen 20 años de Tlachinollan, trabajo que busca justicia social para las comunidades (Sididh, 28 de julio de 2014)

Tlachinollan, 20 años de defensa de los derechos humanos en la Montaña(Sin Embargo, 28 de julio de 2014)

OPINIÓN: 20 años por los derechos humanos (Tlachinollan, 23 de julio de 2014)

For more information from SIPAZ (in English):

Guerrero: Celebration of the 19th anniversary of the Tlachinollan Mountain Center for Human Rights (4 August 2013)

Guerrero: 18th Anniversary of Tlachinollan Mountain Center for Human Rights (20 June 2012)


Guerrero: three opponents of the La Parota dam project arrested

August 4, 2014

CECOP-flyer

One day after the tenth anniversary of the founding of the Council of Ejidos and Communities Opposed to the La Parota Dam (CECOP), on 29 July, three CECOP members were arrested, including a coordinator who had succeeded the former spokesperson Marco Antonio Suástegui, who in turn was arrested in mid-June.  The arrested inlude the coordinator of the Committee of Peoples of CECOP, Maximino Solís Valeriano, as well as Julio Ventura Ascencio and Emilio Hernández Solís. Vidulfo Rosales Sierra, director of juridical affairs for the Tlachinollan Mountain Center for Human Rights, reported that in the case of Maximino Solís, the penal case he confronts began in 2005, such that the timeframe for prosecuting the crime has already passed.  In the cases of Ventura Ascensio and Hernández Solís, the charges for which they are being held is attempted murder.  Similarly, José Palma Tornez and Marco Antonio Suástegui Muñoz were charged for the same crime, though this was then reclassified to aggravated assault.  Palma Tornez was released after having paying a bail of 146,000 pesos, while Suástegui Muñoz continues incarcerated in Nayarit, where he confronts other charges as well.  The three newly incarcerated persons are being held in the Acapulco jail.

Regarding this new case, the victims accused CECOP members of having injured them in April, following the attack with firearms undertaken by their relatives against communal police in Cacahuatepec.  At this time, CECOP member Lorenzo Ángel Lázaro and ex-ejidal commissioner Nemesio Valeriano Moreno were injured.  There have been no arrests in the case of the attack on CECOP.

For more information (in Spanish):

Detienen ministeriales a tres integrantes del Cecop; un coordinador, entre ellos (La Jornada de Guerrero, 29 de julio de 2014)

Detienen a tres integrantes del Cecop acusados de tentativa de homicidio(El Sur de Acapulco, 29 de julio de 2014)

La Parota, la cuenta regresiva (La Jornada de Guerrero, 29 de julio de 2014)

For more information from SIPAZ (in English):

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

Guerrero: Several injured after atttack on communal police of CECOP near Acapulco (23 April 2014)

Guerrero: CRAC accepts 48 new communities from Acapulco (16 March 2014)

Guerrero: Sympathizers of the La Parota dam injure two CECOP members with machetes (12 November 2013)

Guerrero: CECOP on red alert after invasion by Army (5 March 2013)