Latest Chiapas news from Sipaz
June 20, 2014
On June 21, in San Cristobal de Las Casas, Chiapas, homage will be paid to David Ruiz García, a member of the National Indigenous Congress (CNI), who died accidentally on the caravan which went to La Realidad on May 24 and 25. In addition, the word of the Zapatista Army of National Liberation (EZLN) and what took place during the homage to the Zapatista José Luis Solís López, “Galeano,” in the Caracol Mother of the Caracoles in the Sea of Our Dreams, will be shared. Money will also be raised for the reconstruction of the School and Clinic in La Realidad, which were destroyed after the attack last May 2.
From 10 in the morning and throughout the day in Espacio Wapaní (No 10 Flavio Paniagua Street), there will be workshops in photography, communication, herbalism, theatre, dance and music, among other activities.
June 20, 2014
On May 25, the Skoltayel You Jmetik Ch’ulbalmilal (Saving Our Mother Earth) gathering was held by the organized women of the Highlands (Los Altos) of Chiapas, from the collectives in la Grandeza, Aguacatenango, El Puerto and the Centre for Women’s Rights in Chiapas, “due to our concerns about the increasing use of greenhouses for planting large-scale monocultures in the region, specifically tomatoes.” The purpose of the gathering was to analyse the causes and consequences which greenhouses bring to our communities and families, “and to our mother earth.” About 400 people attended the gathering, both men and women, to find that “the greenhouses for tomatoes will only benefit the large food companies, it is a lie to say that they improve the life and economy of the campesinos and campesinas.” They also noted in the pronouncement that the “use of agrochemicals in greenhouses damages our mother earth, leaves our plots of land sick, so that we cannot plant our ancestral foods like corn and beans, pollutes our water and crops,” and also “damages our health, through consuming contaminated food and stopping planting our native foods,” among other complaints.
For these reasons, they demanded the “recognition of the rights of women to the tenure, use and enjoyment of the land, we also work it and care for it.”
June 20, 2014
In a bulletin issued on June 16, the Fray Bartolome de Las Casas Human Rights Centre (CDHFBC) denounced a series of acts of surveillance and harassment of its members and members of other civil society organizations. It reported that on April 29, in San Cristóbal de Las Casas, the director, Victor Hugo Lopez, was followed and monitored from a vehicle on his way to a work meeting. On May 23, in the context of the Caravan of Solidarity “Galeano lives”, the same vehicle was seen in the premises of the Municipal Sports Centre of San Cristóbal, where the caravan bound for the community of La Realidad was assembling. The bulletin stated that inside the vehicle, a person later identified as Felipe Osorio Lazo, “was videoing in a suspicious manner”. For this reason, the coordinators of the Caravan asked him to identify himself, hand over the camera and leave the site. Within the camera’s memory they found photographs and video of members of Frayba and other civil organizations. The bulletin added that “there is data indicating the involvement of Felipe Osorio Lazo in intelligence work for the Mexican State in various areas of civil society.”
The CDHFBC finally reported that “faced with these events, on June 11, 2014, Frayba filed a complaint with the Special Prosecutor for the Protection and Care of Nongovernmental Organizations for the Defence of Human Rights, of the General Prosecutor of Justice of the State of Chiapas, to conduct the necessary investigations in relation to the actions of harassment and surveillance carried out by Felipe Osorio. The above has been duly reported to the Inter-American Commission on Human Rights, through the precautionary measures 5210 that Frayba has with this international organization.”
June 14, 2014
On June 10, the ejidatarios from San Sebastián Bachajón denounced the “officialist” Ejidal Commissioner, Alejandro Moreno Gómez, for trying to “hand over [the land] to the bad government,” by convoking an “illegal” assembly in order to convince the courts that the Assembly agrees with the plundering of the communal lands.
They denounced: “On June 11, 2014 the officialist ejidal commissioner is organizing an illegal assembly to illegally collect signatures to ask to withdraw the petition for amparo and land claim from before the tribunals, and to simulate that the general assembly of ejidatarios are in agreement with the dispossession; so we denounce these corruptions because we energetically reject these crimes committed by the ejidal commissioner to the detriment of the people of San Sebastián Bachajón, as an authority he should respect his people, but he is a mere puppet of the bad government because he has no dignity.”
The indigenous Tzeltales from the ejido also agreed to continue defending their land by legal means, with the amparo (constitutional protection demand) 274/2011. They commented however that “this corrupt judge, who already has an agreement with the bad government, has respected neither the law nor human rights, […] saying that he will not proceed to study the case because we have no right to defend our land, and he falsely says that the ejidal assembly consented to the government staying permanently in our lands.”
At the same time, the ejidatarios filed a complaint against the ejidal Commissioner before a Land Court “for the illegal assembly in which Alejandro Moreno Gómez and his supporters were imposed as ejidal commissioners. They committed many irregularities with the support of the Agrarian Court of Ocosingo”. They stressed that on June 5, they were “intimidating and harassing compañeros of our organization by taking pictures and videos with their cellphones.”
Finally, they asked the “compañeros who fight for a world in which many worlds fit” to remain vigilant, “because the bad government increasingly seeks to put an end to our organization to dispossess our people of their territory.”