National: Lack of confidence and strong criticisms of the Second Governmental Report presented by EPN

September 15, 2014

Foto @ Cuartoscuro

On 1 September, President Enrique Peña Nieto (EPN) presented to the Congress his second governmental report after 21 months of management that have seen the approval of 11 structural reforms and negative results in terms of security, economic growth, and employment rate, according to official statistics and experts.

The Movement More than 131 together with Youth Amidst the National Emergency, Migration Table 132, Services and Assessment for Peace (SERAPAZ), the Movement for Peace with Justice and Dignity, and Article 19 launched a video to expose “the questions that President Enrique Peña Nieto’s report omitted” using the hashtag #MexicoHasNoPresident.  SERAPAZ warned that, two years into his administration, more than 23,640 murders have been registered, in addition to 22,322 victims forcibly disappeared.  For its part, Migration 132 stressed that the Southern Border Strategy recently launched by EPN’s government “seeks only to militarize the border.”  Furthermore, Mexico has no official data regarding disappeared migrants. Article 19 reported that during EPN’s government, seven journalists have been murdered, possibly due to the exercise of their profession; that in 2013, 330 attacks on the press were observed in Mexico, with more than 150 journalists assaulted during the first half of 2014.  It noted that “public resources of the State are used to control the editorial line of the communication media.”

Édgar Cortez, from the Mexican Institute on Human Rights and Democracy, indicated that the content of the governmental report is poor, because “it only presents a series of laws and programs as successes, when these are not translated into concrete actions and results” that would result in the observance of these guarantees.  “Neither does it say anything about the great question which has existed since the beginning: impunity.  Nor does it present any strategy for how to combat it,” adding that “it does not deal with serious problems that continue to present themselves in the country,” such as the practice of torture as a means of investigation.  He said that there still are no indications that the government has an effective policy in terms of human rights. José Antonio Lara Duque, coordinator of the Zeferino Ladrillero Center for Human Rights, noted that cases of forcible disappearances, extrajudicial executions, and other human-rights violations continue unabated, since the government has not modified its strategy against organized crime.  Lara Duque observed in addition that, following the approval of the energy reform, a policy will be applied for the imposition of megaprojects that will degrade the rights of ejidtarios and indigenous peoples.

For more information (in Spanish):

Documento: 2º Informe de Gobierno 2013-2014 (septiembre 2014)

EPN habló más de promesas que de logros en 2do informe: PAN y PRD(Aristegui Noticias, 3 de septiembre de 2014)
Muestra Segundo Informe retrocesos en procuración de justicia(Quadratín Oaxaca, 2 de septiembre de 2014)
For more information from SIPAZ (in English):

National: Submission of First Governmental Report amidst protests and mass-disturbances (13 September 2013)

National: Polemical ascension of EPN (7 December 2012)


National: XI National Meeting of the Mexican Movement of Those Affected by Dams and in Defense of Rivers (MAPDER) in Olintla, Puebla

September 15, 2014

Marcha en Olintla, Puebla (@Boca de Polen)

From 29 to 31 August, the XI National Meeting of the Mexican Movement of Those Affected by Dams and in Defense of Rivers (MAPDER) took place in Olintla municipality, Puebla, with the participation of more than 600 persons pertaining to 80 organizations hailing from the states of Puebla, Chiapas, Tabasco, Guerrero, Oaxaca, Veracruz, Nayarit, Jalisco, Colima, Mexico City, Mexico State, and Coahuila, as well as other countries.  At the event, participants share their experiences, struggles, and dreams.

In the final Declaration, conference-participants denounced that, “since the [time of the] approval of the structural reforms promoted by the government of Enrique Peña Nieto, […] we have confronted a meticulous and systematic dismantling of all the legal mechanisms used by the people in defense of their lands.  The right to consultation, communal property in land, free municipalities, the–already weak–environmental regulations: all of this has been weakened so as to open the door to investment in megaprojects.”  They warned that “to close the pincer-grasp of the counter-reforms that have battered the country for three decades, the government of Peña Nieto is preparing to place the cherry on the cake with the announced agrarian reform, which seeks to consolidate the plan to plunder campesino lands begun in 1992 by Carlos Salinas de Gortari. Amidst this latest attempt to attack our rights, they have said that they come for our lands and territories.  We tell them: ‘Here we await you.  You will not pass!'”

Conference-goers also indicated that the government “employs all power in the security forces and military to repress communal defenders and to demobilize struggle by criminalizing social protest […].  The murder of Noé Vázquez, the illegal arrest of our comrade in struggle Marco Antonio Suástegui (CECOP), [and] the imposition of arrest-orders against dozens of MAPDER members are demonstrations of the war strategy to loot our peoples.”

They closed by stressing that “we will continue to advance our own communal ways of life, and we struggle for an alternative energy project in Mexico and Latin America.”

For more information (in Spanish):

Declaración de Olintla y Acuerdos del XI Encuentro Nacional del MAPDER(MAPDER, 31 de agosto de 2014)

El rechazo a reformas, entre las demandas del Mapder (La Jornada de Oriente, 3 de septiembre de 2014)

Audio de Boca de Polen: http://bocadepolen.org/web/?p=12994

For more information from SIPAZ (in English):

Mexico: Murder of MAPDER member in Veracruz (20 August 2013)

National: IX National Intercultural Meeting of MAPDER in Presidio de los Reyes (15 October 2013)

Chiapas: Regional Forum in Defense of the Land, the Territory and Natural Resources held in Ejido Costa Rica, frontier municipality of Comalapa (9 March 2011)

Chiapas: pilgrimage against “death projects” (3 December 2010)


Chiapas: Communique from PUDEE regarding structural reforms

September 2, 2014

 Imagen @ PUDEE

Image @ PUDEE

On 19 August, the organizational process Peoples United for the Defense of Electricity (PUDEE) which adheres to the Sixth Declaration of the Lacandona Jungle published a communique in which its members analyze and criticize the impacts of the newly approved structural reforms. The communique describes the “ways in which they will steal from us: first, they will demand that we accept PROCEDE or FANAR, and if we do not, they will deny us access to governmental programs such as Procampo, productive aid, social support—all this for accepting PROCEDE. This step opens the door to the privatization of lands; it would cancel the documents that ejidos possess as presidential resolutions, in addition to the founding charter and the plan governing the distribution of ejidal lands […]. Those who accept PROCEDE would supposedly have the chance to take out loans from the banks, like Azteca Bank, Prendamex, etc. But when one takes out these loans, they will charge you super-high interest rates, and you will not be able to pay back the capital amount. Once you have defaulted, they will sell your lands—that is to say, they will loot you. There will be no one to help you, because with the PROCEDE program there will no longer be an Ejidal Commissioner, nor will there be ejidal meetings. If you have problems, you are obliged to hire a lawyer, if you have money, but if you don’t, other people will come for your land, because that surely has money.”

The communique continues: “They will pay you 7 pesos per hour, for precisely that was it that the deputies and senators approved the labor reform […]. It is true that the government of Enrique Peña Nieto constantly travels to the U.S., Europe, and Asia to offer up our natural resources: they make deals with the big banks, transnational corporations, International Monetary Fund, World Bank, World Trade Organization […]. On our lands will they come to establish tourist centers, large hotels, large commercial centers, and they will open highways and build airports and trainways, as they exist in the U.S. and Japan. This will all be done to extract the natural resources they desire.”

With regard to the defense of electricity, PUDEE mentions that “they will come to loot the ejidal lands to build the dams that will generate much energy, and then we will export this to Central America, the U.S., and Canada. The energy that we will consume will be very expensive for us. They will install digital monitors so that we cannot know how much we are consuming; they steal from us shamelessly; they will change the electricity cables, transformers, and everything, resulting in the pollution of the land, because when these are heated by the sun, they produce radiation that can cause cancer or otherwise harm our health […]. It is calculated that each commercial center will use more than 1000 lightbulbs, as for example in Elektra, Soriana, Aurrera, Coopel, etc. These corporations consume electricity 365 days a year; they never turn off their lights, not even for a second, because then they would lose profits. They are not worried whether or not we have electricity; instead, they are planning so that their business does not lack electrical inputs.”

The communique ends with the following thought: “This is all taken toward the end of converting us into isolated individuals without any social ties at all, without land or a neighborhood—dependent [upon the State] for food and work, so that in this way we are left without an alternative to becoming cheap and fungible labor.”

For more information (in Spanish):

La intención de Las Reformas es el despojo: PUDEE (Chiapas Denuncia Pública, 19 de agosto de 2014)

PUDEE exige justicia por asesinato de José Luis Solís López (Chiapas Denuncia Pública, 19 de agosto de 2014)

For more information from SIPAZ (in English):

Chiapas: PUDEE denounces “climate of violence” generated by the CFE in the zone below Tila (15 April 2013)

Chiapas: PUDEE denounces harassment and electricity cut-off by CFE (24 March 2012)

Chiapas: PUDEE denounces harassment by the CFE (25 February 2011)