Chiapas: 8 months of “threats and harassment” against Tojolabales forcibly displaced from Primero de Agosto

November 19, 2015

Campamento de ddesplazamiento forzado @ChiapasDenunciaPública

Camp of internally displaced @ChiapasDenunciaPública

On 23 October, those displaced from the Primero de Agosto community denounced the observance of 8 months of forcible displacement due to the “omission of the Mexican State.” The community denounced that the “harassment continues without pause, while the death-threats from ejidatarios belonging to the Miguel Hidalgo ejido, being members of the CIOAC-H […] continue.” Presently, the displaced communards confront the continuous firing into the air, threats of rape against women, threats of kidnapping, and of a new displacement.

They assured that, despite the “eight long months of suffering, death-threats, harassment, injustice, looting, violence, of exposure to the elements and strong rays of the sun, below the rain, under plastic tarps,” they have also observed “8 months of blazing a new path of life. These have been 8 months of sharing our suffering with the world through meetings, visits, reflections. These 8 months have helped us to organize ourselves better.” Among their six principal demands, the communards have requested “the immediate observance of the terms agreed to during the special meeting of 25 February 2015, which mandated the equitable distribution of the lands of Primero de Agosto.”

It bears mentioning that on 23 February 2015, members of the Miguel Hidalgo ejido pertaining to the Historical Independent Center of Agricultural Workers and Campesinos (CIOAC-H), “led by Luis Hernández Cruz and Antonio Vásquez Hernández,” violently and forcibly displaced all the residents of the Primero de Agosto community.

For more information (in Spanish):

8 meses de amenazas y hostigamiento a tojolabales en desplazamiento forzado (Chiapas Denuncia Pública, 28 de octubre de 2015)

Comunicado sobre el Poblado Primero de Agosto (Koman ilel, 28 de octubre de 2015)

“Pronto iremos por ustedes, tenemos listas nuestras armas y el gobierno lo sabe”, amenazas de la CIOAC-H a tojolabales desplazados. (Radio Pozol, 28 de octubre de 2015)

For more information from SIPAZ (in English):

Chiapas: Displaced Tojolabal families from Primero de Agosto community denounce threats of a new displacement (10 October 2015)

Chiapas: At nearly half a year of forcible displacement, the Poblado Primero de Agosto denounces new threats (7 September 2015)

Chiapas: Peace Network denounces absence of Chiapas state government in the Primero de Agosto case (22 July 2015)

Chiapas: The Primero de Agosto community completes 4 months of forcible displacement and continues demanding its forthright return (2 July 2015)

Chiapas: The Network for Peace asks for the displaced people of Primero de Agosto to be attended to (27 May 2015)

Chiapas: Communique from forcibly displaced families from Primero de Agosto denounce threats (24 April 2015)

Chiapas: Families of the Primero de Agosto community “in precarious conditions” (21 March 2015)

Chiapas: 57 Tojolabal indigenous people forcibly displaced from their community, Primero de Agosto (8 March 2015)

 

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Chiapas: Indigenous people of Chiapas organize in Acteal to “continue the path of The Other Justice”

October 25, 2015

Foro La Otra Justici en Acteal @LasAbejasdeActealForum “The Other Justice” in Acteal, Chenalhó, Chiapas @LasAbejasdeActeal

On 10 and 11 October, more than 200 indigenous persons from Chiapas met in Acteal, Chenalhó, Mexico, for the Forum on “The Other Justice” organized by the Las Abejas Civil Society, the X’INICH Committee for the Defense of Freedom, and Peoples United in Defense of Electrical Energy (PUDEE). The meeting served to “continue on the path of The Other Justice and to reconstruct our memory due to the pain we have confronted as victims of the counterinsurgent war. We will share our experiences from our cultures within a context of impunity.” The forum, which was organized with three meetings, ended in Acteal with the participation of members of national and international social organizations and “survivors and relatives [of survivors] of the war in the Northern Zone, Viejo Velasco, Banavil, the Primero de Agosto community, as well as other peoples who lived impunity in their own bodies, to speak and reaffirm our words and construct Lekil Chapanel and Bats’il meltsanel, that is to say, Dignified Justice, True Justice, which is righteous and humane.”

In their pronunciation participants declared that “due to such impunity, lies, cynicism, and hypocrisy on the part of the government, our eyes were opened and our ears began to hear the cries due to injustice, such that our heart and thought tell us that True Justice, dignified, long-lasting, humane, and righteous will not be given by the bad government.” Beyond this, they recognized that they must “struggle together without concern for cultural differences, or those related to age, profession, work, or religion. Only by walking together will we reach The Other Justice that is for women, men, children, students, workers of the city and countryside, migrants, lesbians, gays, and trans* individuals […] for all those who are humiliated, discriminated against, and oppressed and repressed by the neoliberal capitalist system.”

For more information (in Spanish):

Pronunciamiento conjunto del Foro Caminando La Otra Justicia (Las Abejas de Acteal, 11 de octubre de 2015)

“Construyan esa Justicia Digna, humana, duradera, cabal. La Verdadera, el Lekil Chapanel y Bats’il tusanel”. (Radio Pozol, 12 de octubre de 2015)

For more information from SIPAZ (in English):

Chiapas: Forum on “The Other Justice” (10 October 2015)


Chiapas: Displaced Tojolabal families from Primero de Agosto community denounce threats of a new displacement

October 10, 2015

Mujeres, hombres, niñas y niños desplazados en campamento de desplazamiento @RadioPozolTojolabal men, women, and children displaced from the Primero de Agosto community @RadioPozol

On 1 October, in a public denunciation, the displaced Tojolabales who comprise the Primero de Agosto community denounced that “due to the omission of the official authorities, the violations of our rights, death-threats, threats of kidnapping, threats of a new displacement, and harassment continue.” On 29 September “authorities and ejidatarios from the Miguel Hidalgo ejido came to threaten us from 30 meters’ distance from where we are living displaced to tell us that they had plans to jointly kidnap six of our comrades and perform a new armed displacement with the backing of their leaders, the CIOAC-Historical, and the three levels of government.” Furthermore, on 30 September, “Armando Méndez López fired into the air with a gun, telling us that any one of these days we would be displaced and our comrades taken.” On 2 October, the Fray Bartolomé de Las Casas Center for Human Rights released an Urgent Action indicating that “the present situation is similar to that which immediately preceded the first forcible displacement. This puts at risk the lives, security, and physical integrity of the displaced families.”

These families, which have now spent seven months displaced in the 23 September community, observed that “the Chiapas state government committed itself on 25 February 2015 to make justice and distribute the lands equally […] but it has not observed its promise; on the contrary, it has allowed the situation to worsen. The Mexican State has been absent or complicit in the criminal actions taken against our people.”

It bears mentioning that on 23 February 2015, ejidatarios from the Miguel Hidalgo ejido who pertain to the Independent Historical Center of Agricultural Workers and Campesinos (CIOAC-H) violently displaced 57 people from the Primero de Agosto community, which since 1 August 2013 had “suffered death-threats, murder-attempts, and attempted kidnappings, robbery, looting, and destruction at the hands of the ejidatarios from the Miguel Hidalgo ejido, members of CIOAC-H.”

For more information (in Spanish):

Familias de Primero de Agosto temen nuevo desplazamiento forzado (Chispas Denuncia Pública, 2 de octubre de 2015)

Riesgo de nuevo desplazamiento forzado a tojolabales del poblado Primero de Agosto (Frayba, Acción Urgente, 2 de octubre de 2015)

Tojolabales de Primero de Agosto cumplen siete meses en desplazamiento forzado (Chiapas Denuncia Pública, 2 de octubre de 2015

Familias de Primero de Agosto temen nuevo desplazamiento forzado (Radio Zapatista, 2 de octubre de 2015)

Chiapas, AU: Riesgo de nuevo desplazamiento contra tojolabales del poblado Primero de Agosto (Centro de Medios Libres México, 2 de octubre de 2015)

Chiapas: Indígenas tojolabales temen nuevo desplazamiento forzado. Con armas de fuego son hostigados por la Cioac-H (Radio Pozol, 2 de octubre de 2015)

FRAYBA: Riesgo de nuevo desplazamiento forzado a tojolabales del poblado Primero de Agosto (Red Contra la Represión y por la Solidaridad, 4 de octubre de 2014)

For more information from SIPAZ (in English):

Chiapas: At nearly half a year of forcible displacement, the Poblado Primero de Agosto denounces new threats (7 September 2015)

Chiapas: Peace Network denounces absence of Chiapas state government in the Primero de Agosto case (22 July 2015)

Chiapas: The Primero de Agosto community completes 4 months of forcible displacement and continues demanding its forthright return (2 July 2015)

Chiapas: The Network for Peace asks for the displaced people of Primero de Agosto to be attended to (27 May 2015)

Chiapas: Communique from forcibly displaced families from Primero de Agosto denounce threats (24 April 2015)

Chiapas: Families of the Primero de Agosto community “in precarious conditions” (21 March 2015)

Chiapas: 57 Tojolabal indigenous people forcibly displaced from their community, Primero de Agosto (8 March 2015)


Chiapas: Native peoples pilgrim for peace, for life against violence and dispossession

August 28, 2015
Pilgrimage for peace, for life, against violence and dispossession @KomanIlel

Pilgrimage for peace, for life, against violence and dispossession @KomanIlel

On July 28th and 29th, a pilgrimage was carried out, organized by the pastoral staff, deacons and coordinators of the Tojolab’al Mission where close to 5,000 tojolab’ales, tseltales, tsotsiles y mestizos were brought together. They expressed and showed their solidarity with the pueblo of Simojovel and denounced the forced displacement of Banavil and particularily drew attention to the case of the Poblado Primero de Agosto, where 57 people were forcibly displaced from their lands by members of the ejido Miguel Hidalgo, also members of the Historic Independent Central of Agricultural Workers and Campesinos (CIOAC-H). The walk started from Ignacio Zaragoza, to the municipal capital of Las Margaritas, ending at the parish of San Sebastian in Comitan-

The gospel teaches us not to remain silent before cases such as Acteal; Simojovel, the forced displacement of Banavil and Primero de Agosto; before cases of the destruction of nature from mining and mega projects and in cases such as alcoholism and drug addiction in our communities,” shared Marcelo Perez Perez, pastor of Simojovel. From their part, the Network for Peace (Red por la Paz)-Chiapas, demonstrated that the case of the displaced families of Primero de Agosto is not an isolated case, and at the same time reiterated their solidarity with them, “It is a privilege to pilgrim and walk with you. We will continue walking ts’omanotik (together)” they added. In a pronouncement, The Believing Peoples and the different communities and social organizations that participated in the pilgrimage, expressed that they are organizing, uniting, and transforming their consciousness, “to confront the violence that we live in our communities and the problems that come with structural reforms: such as education, health, labor, and energy”.

For more Information:

Pronunciamiento de Las Margaritas en defensa de nuestro derecho a ser pueblos (Chiapas Denuncia Pública, July 29, 2015)

Familias tojolabales en desplazamiento forzado se unen a peregrinación en Las Margaritas (Chiapas Denuncia Pública, July 28, 2015)

Acompañamos la peregrinación por la paz, por la vida, contra la violencia y el despojo (July 28, 2015)

#PueblosOriginarios se pronuncian por la vida, la paz y contra la violencia y el despojo en #Chiapas (Koman Ilel, July 28, 2015)

#Chiapas #Peregrinación de por la #paz, por la #vida, contra la #violencia y el #despojo (Koman Ilel, July 28, 2015)

Pueblos originarios se pronuncian por la vida, la paz y contra la violencia y el despojo en Chiapas (Radio Pozol, July 28, 2015)

Chiapas: “Hay proyectos de muerte, pero hoy venimos a reivindicar los derechos a la vida” (Radio Pozol, July 29, 2015)

Peregrinación por la paz por la vida, contra la violencia y el despojo (Chiapas Denuncia Pública, July 12, 2015)


Chiapas: Peace Network denounces absence of Chiapas state government in the Primero de Agosto case

July 22, 2015

IMG_3924

Temporary camp, Photo@Sipaz

On 15 July, the Peace Network, of which SIPAZ forms a part, published a communique denouncing the omission of the Chiapas state government with regard to the violation of the human rights of the forcibly displaced people from the Primero de Agosto community. This conclusion has to do with the fact that, two days prior, both the Coordinator of the Subsecretary for Governance, Gustavo Víctor Moscoso Zenteno, as well as the Special Prosecutor for Indigenous Justice, Cristóbal Hernández Hernández, failed to show to the meetings that had been arranged with the Peace Network.

Two months after the civil observation mission that was held on 11 May, the member-organizations of the Peace Network presented evidence showing that the grave conditions of the displaced families have not improved, and that death-threats and attacks on the camp of the displaced continue to be prosecuted by members of the Historical Independent Center for Agricultural Workers and Campesinos (CIOAC-H). The Network’s communique expresses that “despite the various meetings that we have had with the state government, the State has not observed the accords to which it had agreed as a means of resolving the problem in a profound way, through the recognition of the right to the land from which the families of the Primero de Agosto community were displaced. These commitments were signed in a meeting on 25 February 2015, when the Chiapas state government committed itself to guaranteeing the redistribution of 50% of the land [the displaced] had had in the Primero de Agosto community.”

In addition, the Network responded to the reason for which the officials were absent: “We believe that the argument of the officials to ignore us due to the electoral situation is not valid, amidst the grave human-rights violations that the displaced families are experiencing. On the contrary, the electoral context worsens their vulnerability, as violence can take place in the region before, during, or subsequent to the elections. For this reason, we request a guarantee for the lives and physical and psychological integrity of the displaced persons from Primero de Agosto.”

For more information (in Spanish):

Gobierno de Chiapas mantiene actitud omisa para atender violaciones a derechos humanos de personas desplazadas forzadamente del Poblado Primero de Agosto (Red por la Paz, 15 de julio de 2015)

Acusan de omiso al gobierno de Chiapas ante desplazamiento forzado de indígenas (Proceso, 15 de julio de 2015)

For more information from SIPAZ (in English):

Chiapas: The Primero de Agosto community completes 4 months of forcible displacement (2 July 2015)

Chiapas: The Network for Peace asks for the displaced people of Primero de Agosto to be attended to (27 May 2015)

Chiapas: Communique from forcibly displaced families from Primero de Agosto denounce threats (24 April 2015)

Chiapas: New threats against residents of Primero de Agosto (23 April 2015)

Chiapas: Families of the Primero de Agosto community “in precarious conditions” (21 March 2015)

Chiapas: 57 Tojolabal indigenous people forcibly displaced from their community, Primero de Agosto (8 March 2015)


Chiapas: The Primero de Agosto community completes 4 months of forcible displacement and continues demanding its forthright return

July 2, 2015

Familias desplazadas del Poblado Primero de Agosto (@Koman Ilel)

Displaced families from the Primero de Agosto community (@Koman Ilel)

In a communique published on 23 June, the residents of the Primero de Agosto community denounced the 120 days of forcible displacement experienced by the “17 Tojolabal families because of [the actions of] ejidatarios from Miguel Hidalgo who pertain to the CIOAC-Historical organization, led by Luis Hernández Cruz,” and it adds that Elvira Méndez Pérez, who just gave birth, “is suffering greatly because of the cold and the rain, as she lacks proper shelter in which her child can grow up happily.”

In their denunciation, the displaced describe “how for the last 4 months we are awakened by raindrops that penetrate the plastic tarps which we use to cover ourselves at night. We awaken with our clothes wet and cold due to the humidity of the land on which we live, as it is the time of rain, and the government has done nothing […]. Look at where we are displaced, and you will see the face of impunity and the reality of indigenous peoples.”

Despite this suffering and the conditions in which the displaced live, the families assure that they continue “to struggle for our land, because it is the only resource we have. We are not asleep in the struggle for our land, which continues, and will live on […]. We will not become tired of denouncing until the government observes its promises. We will not tire of denouncing until there is justice, because we are in favor of justice and peace. As our ancestors say, ‘ts omanotik b’a sk’ulajel jsak’aniltik.’ That is to say, together we build life.”

The Primero de Agosto community continues to demand that the three levels of government guarantee the proper conditions for return, “because there is where our happy Iives take place.” Furthermore, they call on the government to observe the accord that was signed on 25 February 2015, which stipulates that the state government commit itself to redistributing lands equally.

For more information (in Spanish):

Nuestra compañera que acaba de dar a luz, aquí donde estamos está sufriendo mucho por el frío y la lluvia”, indígenas tojolabales desplazados en Chiapas. (Radio Pozol, 26 de junio de 2015)

120 días de desplazamiento forzado de 17 familias tojolabales (Chiapas Denuncia Pública, 25 de junio de 2015)

¿Dónde nacerá el hijo o hija de Elvira Méndez?, indígena tojolabal desplazada en Chiapas (Radio Pozol, 21 de abril de 2015)

For more information from SIPAZ (in English):

Chiapas: The Network for Peace asks for the displaced people of Primero de Agosto to be attended to (27 May 2015)

Chiapas: Communique from forcibly displaced families from Primero de Agosto denounce threats (April 24, 2015)

Chiapas: New threats against residents of Primero de Agosto (23 April 2015)

Chiapas: Families of the Primero de Agosto community “in precarious conditions” (21 March 2015)

Chiapas: 57 Tojolabal indigenous people forcibly displaced from their community, Primero de Agosto (8 March 2015)


Chiapas: The Network for Peace asks for the displaced people of Primero de Agosto to be attended to

May 27, 2015

Desplazados de Poblado Primero de Agosto, @SIPAZ

Displaced residents of the Primero de Agosto community, @SIPAZ

On May 20, the official report of the Civil Mission of Observation of the Primero de Agosto community, municipality of Las Margaritas, was presented in a press conference. 12 organizations participated together on May 11 and 12 in said mission that was carried out to observe and document the situation of the displaced people.

We are very sad about this forced displacement, where there has been much insecurity.  We are very uneasy.  We can’t sleep because of the fear that they are going to hurt us again, the authorities of Miguel Hidalgo.  Our children are becoming ill with cough, fever, head aches, stomache aches, and they always ask us when we are going to return to our home,” shared one of the displaced women.

56 people, amongst them 18 who are underage, were forcefully displaced February 23, 2015. On this day, they left their houses, belongings, and the land they occupied since August 1, 2013.  According to the agreement signed by representatives of the state government on January 8, 2015, the ownership of the property is currently considered “undefined.” The forced displacement was provoked by 50 peopple, authorities of Miguel Hidalgo, who are also memebers of the Historic Independent Central of Agricultural Workers and Campesinos (CIOAC-H).  15 of the attackers carried high-caliber firearms.

The Civil Mission of Observation reported that the critical humanitarian situation, in which the displaced people find themselves in, has not been adequately attended to. The displaced live in precarious homes made of sticks, plastics, and nylon; there is an insufficient amount of drinkable water; the children are not attending school; there is a small amount of food (they only eat once or twice a day); and the health of the displaced community is of concern, especially in the children and the women who are pregnant: “The health and integrity of the displaced people, not only due to the presence of infectious or contagious diseases caused by the situation that is being lived, are being threatened by the presence of agents of the environment, such as climate and fauna of the area, and by the constant threats of the people who displaced them.  Evidently the rights to food, housing, access to water, a healthy environment, and emotional and social health of the population are being violated.”

For more information (in Spanish):

Más amenazas y hostigamiento a indígenas tojolabales (26 de mayo de 2015)

El gobierno de Chiapas cierra los ojos ante la situación de desplazados en Las Margaritas (22 de mayo de 2015)

Misión Civil de Observación de Derechos Humanos a campamento de personas desplazadas forzadamente del Poblado Primero de Agosto, municipio de Las Margaritas”, 20 de mayo de 2015

Desplazados y condiciones precarias denuncian nuevas amenazas y hostigamiento, Chiapas paralelo, 21 de mayo de 2015

Chiapas: demandan atender a desplazados, La Jornada, 21 de mayo de 2015

Desplazados de Margaritas urgen atención, noticiasnet.mx, 21 de mayo de 2015

For more Information from SIPAZ (in English):

Chiapas: Communique from forcibly displaced families from Primero de Agosto denounce threats

(April 24, 2015)

Chiapas: New threats against residents of Primero de Agosto (23 April 2015)

Chiapas: Families of the Primero de Agosto community “in precarious conditions” (21 March 2015)

Chiapas: 57 Tojolabal indigenous people forcibly displaced from their community, Primero de Agosto (8 March 2015)