Chiapas: Civil Society Las Abejas against the “Proposed Hydrocarbons Law”
June 24, 2014
Anniversary of the Acteal massacre. Archive photo @ SIPAZ
On June 22, the Civil Society Las Abejas of Acteal denounced another effort by the government to promote "constitutional reforms […] not for the benefit of the Mexican people, but for a few people who are sick with ambition and greed," expressing their opposition to the "proposed hydrocarbons law," defining it as "a project of theft and plunder of the peoples" to "legalize the theft of our lands and the invasion of our territory," and also a "death sentence for millions of men, women, and children who [live] from the Mother Earth."
In their latest communiqué, they stated that: "We, the women and men, or the campesinos and campesinas, who work the land, we say we CAN LIVE WITHOUT GOLD; CAN LIVE WITHOUT OIL; but we CANNOT LIVE WITHOUT WATER!, CANNOT LIVE WITHOUT CORN". They also addressed the senators and the president of Mexico, accusing them of being "traitors to the motherland," stressing that "what they have done is, in a few words, called a crime and betrayal of the motherland". They pointed out that the hydrocarbons law states that "in 90 days the campesinos who own land on which there are presumed to be hydrocarbon deposits will come to an agreement with companies such as Shell, British Petroleum … etc," and added that "here in our country their laws and their reforms of death and dispossession have no worth. They must know that we will defend the Mother Earth, just like our brothers and sisters who were massacred at Acteal defended peace and justice, at all costs."
Las Abejas continued to denounce the neoliberal capitalist system as "a machine of terror and inhumanity which represses, imprisons, dispossesses and massacres the peoples who resist and build their autonomy." Therefore, they continued to demand that their brothers and sisters of the organized peoples of Mexico "unite to defend our mother earth and territory, until the laws of plunder and dispossession of the Mexican political mafia are cast down."
Finally, they expressed their solidarity with the priest of Simojovel, Marcelo Pérez, who has received threats, the director of the Fray Bartolomé de Las Casas Human Rights Centre, Victor Hugo López, who has suffered harassment, and the family of David Ruiz, a member of the Indigenous National Congress (CNI), who was killed in a motor accident.
Chiapas: Urgent Action concerning threats to Marcelo Perez, the priest of Simojovel
June 23, 2014
Padre Marcelo Perez (@ acteal.blogspot.com)
In an Urgent Action issued on June 19, the Fray Bartolomé de Las Casas Human Rights Centre (CDHFBC) expressed concern at the death threats and harassment which threaten the life and integrity of the priest Marcelo Pérez Pérez and others who are part of the Parish Council of the municipality of Simojovel. For several months, the parish has been particularly active in seeking the decommissioning of bars, nightclubs and centres of prostitution in the municipality.
During the last pilgrimage organized in this context, on June 6, board members heard: "This fucking father who keeps on fucking, what he wants is a beating or a bullet" Other people during the pilgrimage were defaming the cleric through flyers accusing him of being a "subversive apostate", "false prophet", "social destabiliser of the region," among other insults about his work.
The CDHFBC demands from the state that they protect and ensure the life, personal integrity and security of Father Marcelo and those who make up the Parish Council; investigate and put an end to the acts of death threats, harassment, assault, defamation and criminalization against Father Marcelo and those who make up the Parish Council; guarantee and respect the right to freedom of thought and free expression in the region.
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Chiapas: 18 years since the disappearance of Minerva Pérez, her case remains unpunished
June 20, 2014
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 (CDHFBLC). In addition, the CDHFBLC 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, gang-raped for three days, and even today her whereabouts are unknown, according to testimony gathered by the CDHFBLC. The Inter-American Commission on Human Rights (CIDH) is currently studying the cases of the disappearance of 37 persons, 85 executions and more than 12 thousand people who were forcibly displaced in the lower area of Tila during the years of armed conflict.