Chiapas: Commemoration for those killed and disappeared during the conflict in the zone below Tila

October 8, 2015

Altar de las víctimas @ SIPAZAltar for the victims @ SIPAZ

On 20 September, in the community of Masoja Shucja, Tila municipality, a commemoration was held to remember those killed and forcibly disappeared between the years 1994 and 1999 in the region below Tila. Around a hundred people participated in the event, designed to never “forget our fallen and disappeared comrades, and so we remember them. They will always be in our hearts,” as the People United for the Defense of Electrical Energy (PUDEE) expressed, being adherents to the Sixth Declaration of the Lacandon Jungle from the Northern Jungle region, authored by the Zapatista Army of National Liberation (EZLN). Following a mass, relatives of the disappeared and murdered spoke and demanded “true justice, the presentation with life of the disappeared, and compensation of damages and the suffering caused during the conflict in the communities,” adding that “the situation of the communities in the zone below Tila, Chiapas, has not changed. We do not live in peace or tranquility. The three levels of the bad government actually are the ones responsible for the low-intensity warfare we confront. We explain how our communities are now experiencing problems due to the divisions that surged during the recent elections, though there also exist families displaced by the armed conflict or counterinsurgency against the EZLN during the years 1996-1997.”

They also indicated that the paramilitary group “Development, Peace, and Justice” is being reorganized at present, affirming that “in its actions to control the communities and municipalities they use political functionaries, specifically their portable high-frequency radios, and carry arms which are for the exclusive use of the Army in public areas to threaten and intimidate their opponents. They hire young drug-addicts, go out hooded to block roads and highways, impeding free transit, and they attack and rob violently.” Beyond this, they recalled the proximate anniversary of the forcible disappearance of the 43 teacher-students from Ayotzinapa, noting that “we will continue to express our support for them; they are not alone.”

It should be observed that the conflict in the zone below the Tila municipality began with the imposition of the Chiapas Campaign Plan 94, a counterinsurgent strategy taken by the Mexican government to prevent the expansion of the EZLN during the 1990s.

For more information (in Spanish):

Familiares de víctima de la contrainsurgencia siguen exigiendo justicia (Chiapas Denuncia Pública, 21 de septiembre de 2015)

For more information from SIPAZ (in English):

Chiapas: Event “Heart of memory, sown on our lands” in Masoja Shucjá, Tila (12 November 2014)

Chiapas: 18 years since the disappearance of Minerva Pérez, her case remains unpunished (25 June 2014)

Chiapas: 17 years after the forced disappearance of Minerva Guadalupe Pérez Torres, her case is taken up at the IACHR (25 June 2013)

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Chiapas: Minerva, half of her life disappeared, with no justice

June 29, 2015

Minerva Guadalupe Pérez Torres

Minerva Guadalupe Pérez Torres

On 20 June 2015, Minerva Guadalupe Pérez Torres would have had her thirty-eighth birthday. That same day in 1996, she was “headed to the Masojá Shucjá community, Tila municipality, Chiapas, to visit her ill father. On her route, in the Miguel Alemán community, she was intercepted by members of the ‘Development, Peace, and Justice’ paramilitary group, who kidnapped her, tortured her sexually and otherwise for three days, and then forcibly disappeared her. Nearly two decades after, her whereabouts are entirely unknown,” indicates the Fray Bartolomé de Las Casas Center for Human Rights (CDHFBLC). Beyond this, a public bulletin reported that the relatives of Minerva and other forcibly disappeared and extrajudicially executed persons are receiving notes “to confront their aggressors, the paramilitary leaders of Development, Peace, and Justice: Diego Vázquez Pérez, Sabelino Torres Martínez, Marcos Albino, and Samuel Sánchez, who are ordered to appear before a judge or face a fine of $2,048 [Mexican pesos] if they fail to comply.”

This aforementioned group was trained and protected by the State Police and the Mexican Army in the 1990s as a counter-insurgency weapon, as demonstrated in the Chiapas Campaign Plan 94. The CDHFBLC documented that Development, Peace, and Justice carried out 85 executions, 37 forcible disappearances, and forcibly displaced more than 4,500 people.

For more information (in Spanish):

Minerva Guadalupe: Verdad y Justicia hasta encontrarte (CDHFBLC, 23 de junio de 2015)

La indígena chiapaneca Minerva Guadalupe Pérez, lleva desaparecida más de la mitad de su vida (Desinformémonos, 23 de junio de 2015)

Desaparición forzada en Chiapas, bajo una loza de impunidad (Centro Prodh, 23 de junio de 2015)

For more information from SIPAZ (in English):

Chiapas: 18 years since the disappearance of Minerva Pérez, her case remains unpunished (25 June 2014)

Chiapas: 17 years after the forced disappearance of Minerva Guadalupe Pérez Torres, her case is taken up at the IACHR (25 June 2013)

Chiapas: 16 years of impunity in the case of the forced disappearance of Minerva Guadalupe Pérez Torres (25 June 2012)

Chiapas: Masojá Shucjá, commemoration of the victims of the victims of the conflict of ’95 and ’96 (7 October 2011)


Chiapas: “Heart of memory, sown on our lands” event in Masoja Shucjá, Tila

November 12, 2014

“Corazón de memoria, sembrando en nuestro territorio”, octubre de 2014 (@CDHFBC)

“Heart of memory, sown on our lands.” October 2014 (@CDHFBC)

On 24 October, the “Heart of memory, sown on our lands” event was held in the Masojá Shucjá community, Tila municipality, in the northern zone of Chiapas, to remember the victims of execution, forcible disappearance, and forced displacement in this region between the years 1995 and 1999.  Those present demanded justice in these cases and expressed their solidarity with the families of the normalist students of Ayotzinapa, Guerrero.

The Fray Bartolomé de Las Casas Center for Human Rights, present at this event, stressed that “in the zone below Tila, [the paramilitary group] Paz y Justicia committed at least 37 forcible disappearances, 85 executions, and displaced more than 4500 persons, who also suffered harassment, intimidation, destruction of property, torture, sexual abuse, and arbitrary arrests, among other human-rights violations […].  Lamentably, these great human-right violations have continued to enjoy impunity, given that the material and intellectual authors have not been truly investigated or sanctioned in accordance with their involvement in these crimes against humanity.  This situation has been broadly denounced, and it has been taken to the Inter-American Commission on Human Rights.  There have been eight cases that reflect the atrocities experienced in the region.  There are 122 cases documented by this Center of Human Rights in the northern zone.  They are examples of the counter-insurgent strategy that has been implemented by the federal and state authorities, following the Plan for the Chiapas Campaign […].  Neither forgiveness nor forgetting.”

For more information (in Spanish):

A 18 años de impunidad, en Masojá Shucjá Tila Chiapas, exigen justicia por desapariciones y ejecuciones a sus integrantes (Chiapas Paralelo, 31 de octubre de 2014)

Boletín del CDHFBC Ni perdón, ni olvido (CDHFBC, 28 de octubre de 2014)

A 18 años de impunidad, en Masojá Shucjá Tila Chiapas, exigen justicia por desapariciones y ejecuciones a sus integrantes (Radio Pozol, 25 de octubre de 2014)

Castigo a autores de ejecuciones, desapariciones y desplazamientos forzados en Chiapas: Desplazados de Banavil (Comunicado de las y los desplazados de Banavil en el evento de Masoja Shucjá, 24 de octubre de 2014)

For more information from SIPAZ (in English):

Chiapas: 18 years since the disappearance of Minerva Pérez, her case remains unpunished (25 June 2014)

Chiapas: 17 years after the forced disappearance of Minerva Guadalupe Pérez Torres, her case is taken up at the IACHR (25 June 2013)

Chiapas: 16 years of impunity in the case of the forced disappearance of Minerva Guadalupe Pérez Torres (25 June 2012)

Chiapas: Masojá Shucjá, commemoration of the victims of the victims of the conflict of ’95 and ’96 (7 October 2011)


Chiapas: 18 years since the disappearance of Minerva Pérez, her case remains unpunished

June 25, 2014
Aniversario luctuoso en Mashojá Chucjá 2011 @ SIPAZ

Anniversary of her death, Mashojá Shucjá, 2011 @ SIPAZ

 June 20 is the 18th anniversary of the forced disappearance of Minerva Guadalupe Pérez Torres, an indigenous Ch’ol and native of the community of Masojá Shucjá, in the municipality of Tila, who in 1996, at the age of only 19, “was disappeared by members of the then paramilitary group Development Peace and Justice,” as it says in the bulletin of the Fray Bartolome de Las Casas Human Rights Centre (CDHFBC). In addition, the CDHFBC has evidence of persistent “impunity for the gross and systematic violations of the human rights to truth and justice in five unresolved cases of forced disappearance of women, victims of internal armed conflict in Chiapas.”

It should be noted that Minerva was tortured and gang-raped for three days; even today her whereabouts are unknown, according to testimony gathered by the CDHFBLC. The Inter-American Commission on Human Rights (IACHR) is currently studying the cases of the disappearance of 37 persons, 85 executions, and forcible displacement of more than 12 thousand people in the lower area of ​​Tila during the years of armed conflict.

For more Information (in Spanish):

18 años de exigencia de justicia, 18 años de impunidad. 18 años de no cansarse de buscar a Minerva hasta encontrarla (CDHFBLC, June 20, 2014)

For more information from SIPAZ (in English):

Chiapas: 17 years after the forced disappearance of Minerva Guadalupe Pérez Torres, her case is taken up at the IACHR (25 June 2013)

Chiapas: 16 years of impunity in the case of the forced disappearance of Minerva Guadalupe Pérez Torres (25 June 2012)

Chiapas: Masojá Shucjá, commemoration of the victims of the victims of the conflict of ’95 and ’96 (7 October 2011)

 

 

 


Chiapas: 16 years of impunity in the case of the forced disappearance of Minerva Guadalupe Pérez Torres

June 25, 2012

© SIPAZ

On 20 June 1996, Minerva Guadalupe Pérez Torres, a Ch’ol woman who was then 19 years of age, was walking en route to the community of Masojá Shucjá, Tila municipality, to visit her parents.  Upon reaching the community of Miguel Alemán, she was intercepted by a group of persons pertaining to the Paz y Justicia grouping.  She was was detained, physically assaulted, and taken to the home of one of the group’s members. According to testimony on the part of these members obtained by the Fray Bartolomé de Las Casas Center for Human Rights (CDHFBC), Minerva was kidnapped for three days, beaten, and raped.  16 years after these events, her whereabouts are still unknown.

In a bulletin published to observe this saddening anniversary, the CDHFBC stresses that “the forced disappearance of Minerva is part and parcel of a strategy of low-intensity warfare as implemented by the Mexican government against the civil population, as detailed in the ’94 Plan for Chiapas Campaign.’  Minerva was chosen premeditatively due to her being a woman, and due to this she became a victim of war and the abuse of power exercised against her by the paramilitaries of Paz y Justicia, with the complicity and participation of the federal government, then led by Ernesto Zedillo Ponce xce León.  The paramilitary group Paz y Justicia was founded, trained, and financed with public resources in exchange for votes, and thus was utilized as a means to introduced terror among the civil population of the northern zone of the state of Chiapas.”

The CDHFBC recalls as well that “between 1995 and 2000, considering only the northern zone of Chiapas, there were registered 32 forced disappearances of men and 5 of women, in addition to the murder of 7 females and 78 males.  Thus there are total of 122 documented cases that continue to be in impunity, not to mention the forced displacement of 12,000 others.”

For more information (in Spanish):

16 años de la desaparición forzada de Minerva Guadalupe Pérez Torres, CDHFBC, 20 de junio de 2012

For more information from SIPAZ (in English):

Chiapas: Masojá Shucjá, commemoración of the victims of the victims of the conflict of ’95 and ’96 (4 de octubre de 2011)

Chiapas: in Masojá Shucjá, memory and demand for justice for the victims of paramilitaries in 1995 and 1996 (7 October 2010)

Chiapas: 14 years after the forced disappearance of Minerva Pérez Torres by Paz y Justicia paramilitaries (30 June 2010)

Chiapas: commemoration of the victims of Paz y Justicia in Masojá Shucjá (3 September 2009)


Chiapas: Masojá Shucjá, commemoration of the victims of the conflict of ’95 and ’96

October 7, 2011

On 1 October there was held a celebration in commemoration of the victims of the conflict of the years 1995 and 1996 in the northern zone of Chiapas.  It was held in the community of Masojá Shucjá, municipality of Tila, where 8 were killed at the hands of the organization “Paz y Justicia” during those years.

The event was attended not only by people of the community and neighboring ones but also by persons of other regions, including a delegation of the Las Abejas Civil Society (municipality of Chenalhó, in the highlands of Chiapas, which was another region that was particularly affected by violence at the end of the 1990s).  The choir of Las Abejas sang songs while a group of youth from this organization presented a theatrical work regarding the Acteal massacre of 1997.

Following the religious celebration and the play, participants at the event walked to a small pantheon where some of the victims have been buried; there, relatives of the dead and disappeared prayed and presented their word, as did present and past victims in addition to others invited to the celebration.  Four women from Jotalá spoke about how they experience violence today on the part of the government.  A resident of the Nuevo Retorno community gave his word by narrating how it was that those displaced from Miguel Alemán, a bastion of Paz y Justicia at the time, relocated themselves in 2002 to Nuevo Retorno after having lived for years in Masojá Shucjá.

The entire commemoration was a call to maintain alive memory and to continue demanding justice for the victims: Romeo Pérez Pérez, Minerva Guadalupe Pérez Torres, Mateo Hernández López, Juan Ramirez Torres, Hector Pérez Torres, Encarnación Pérez Pérez, Maria Rebeca Pérez Pérez, Sebastián Pérez López, among those who fell in Masojá.

A canvas explained what happened in the following manner:

In this place, where the waters cross, 15 years ago the Mexican government began to apply violence against the communities by means of a coordination among the military and the paramilitary organization Paz y Justicia.  In this way the Mexican government engaged in a politics of death in our Ch’ol region of the northern zone.

Our community was besieged and our brothers and sisters ambushed, disappeared, and executed.  They besieged us so that we would suffer hunger, fear, and disorganization.  In this way they brought us death.

Now we through prayer and celebration save our memory and create life.  Our memory is against forgetting; it is for true justice, so that these acts of death do not repeat themselves.  The armed conflict in Chiapas is part of a strategy of counter-insurgency; the Mexican government incentivized the creation of paramilitary groups in different regions of the conflict zone.

Among these paramilitary groups was distinguished for its cruelty and operative capacity the organization Paz y Justicia, which operated in the Ch’ol territory of the northern zone of Chiapas in the municipalities of Salto de Agua, Sabanilla, Tila, Tumbalá, Yajalón, and Sabanilla.  This documented counter-insurgency strategy left 122 cases of disappearances and executions in the period from 1995 to 2001, of which 37 were forced disappearances (32 men and 5 women) and 86 executions (74 men and 7 women).

All these actions were carried out by Paz y Justicia with the support of the Mexican Army and the Ministry of Public Security, resulting in over three thousand forced displacements.”

For more information from SIPAZ (in English):

Chiapas: in Masojá Shucjá, memory and demand for justice for the victims of paramilitaries in 1995 and 1996 (7 October 2010)

Chiapas: 14 years after the forced disappearance of Minerva Pérez Torres by Paz y Justicia paramilitaries (30 June 2010)

Chiapas: commemoration of the victims of Paz y Justicia in Masojá Shucjá (3 September 2009)


Chiapas: in Masojá Shucjá, memory and demands for justice for the victims of paramilitaries in 1995 and 1996

October 7, 2010

Photo: relatives demand justice for Romeo Pérez Pérez, Minerva Guadalupe Pérez Torres, Mateo Hernández López, Juan Ramirez Torres, Hector Pérez Torres, Encarnación Pérez Pérez, and Sebastián Pérez López (@SIPAZ)

On 29 August 2010, in the community of Masojá Shucjá, municipality of Tila, in the Northern Zone of Chiapas, there was held a commemoration of the victims of conflict during the years 1995 and 1996–some from Masojá Shucjá, others from neighboring communities.  Some of the victims were buried, while others continue disappeared to date.

People from several communities of the municipality came to Masojá Shucjá to join the residents of the community in this act of memory.  After a celebration held in the church, all joined a rosary-prayer in the pantheon where, together with members of their family, lies Mateo Hernández López, ambushed and killed by Paz y Justicia while en route to his milpa in 1996.

Due to the recent rains and landslides experienced in recent days, not all the invited reached the community.  The absence of the Fray Bartolomé de Las Casas Center for Human Rights (CDHFBC) in particular was lamented, given that it is the CDHFBC that is taking the case before the Inter-American Court on Human Rights and that accompanies the community in its efforts of historical memory.  All the children of the community’s primary school attended the event, so that they come to know what it is that happened, and that it continues in impunity.  There it was explained that, although justice does not come from above, memory is a means by which to make justice from below.

On this occasion, not only was justice demanded for the victims of the conflict and their relatives, but also for the losses of possessions that occurred during that time.  As was claimed in a poster exhibited in the pantheon, “in the community of Masojá Shucjá, municipality of Tila, Chiapas, we demand that the possessions we lost during the time of conflict with Paz y Justicia and the bad government in the year 1996 be compensated”: 424 cattle, 23 horses,a number of farm-birds, and 20 burnt houses.

For more information (in Spanish):

Chiapas: 14 years after the forced disappearance of Minerva Pérez Torres by Paz y Justicia paramilitaries (30 June 2010)

Chiapas: commemoration of the victims of Paz y Justicia in Masojá Shucjá (3 September 2009)