San Salvador Atenco: the amparo, and the current legal situation

Claim for amparo against the sale of their land by residents of Atenco is admitted

By Javier Salinas Cesareo, correspondent

La Jornada, Fri 12 Sep 2014

reportadaMarch of residents of San Salvador Atenco to ask the judges of the higher Agrarian Court to admit the amparo they have filed against the change in the ejidal rules to private land ownership, on 08 September 2014 Photo Alfredo Dominguez

San Salvador Atenco, Mex . The twelfth district judge based in Nezahualcoyotl, José Manuel Angel Torres, has admitted the writ for amparo brought by members of the Peoples Front in Defence of the Land (FPDT) from San Salvador Atenco, in which they demand the restoration of measures in the Agrarian Court to prevent the continuation of the proceedings for the titling and sale of more than a thousand hectares of the ejidal nucleus of Atenco.

The FPDT’s lawyer, Ricardo Arturo Lagunes Gasca, reported that the judge assigned to their request for amparo number 1016/2014, at the same time gave notice that the Agrarian Court of Texcoco and the delegation of the National Agrarian Tribunal in the state of Mexico, based in Toluca, must provide a report on why they threw out this measure which the people of Atenco relied on to prevent the sale of their lands.

He also noted that the judge set a constitutional date of 15th October for conducting the hearing about the request for amparo.

"We are asking the judge to admit the amparo so that the protection can be restored because it is necessary to preserve the land judgement, 400/2014, because to continue with the processing of the minutes of that assembly, the sales will become ongoing and it will be legally difficult to prevent them; what we want is for these transactions not to be performed until the agrarian lawsuit is resolved and to determine whether the minutes of that meeting minutes are valid or not, from the agrarian point of view and from that of the international law of indigenous peoples," he said.

The members of the FPDT had presented judgement 400/2014 last June at the Unitary Agrarian Court, demanding the annulment of the last assembly held on the first of the month, where the change of land use was approved for more than a thousand hectares of land, changing from common use, to individual private ownership, held in individual freehold, in order to be able to dispose of the land.

The members of the FPDT had already won an amparo and provisional suspension against this assembly, arguing that serious irregularities occurred. But on Monday, Judge Daniel Magaña Méndez determined to annul this suspension.


In Atenco the State attempts to destroy common property in order to hand it over to the transnationals: Lawyer


atenco_nuevo-1.jpg_2002894772The defence lawyer of the ejidatarios of San Salvador Atenco, Ricardo Lagunes, said that this is so because, by legal means, "the authorities intend to privatize the land" to use it for the construction of the new airport.

"The case of Atenco is an emblematic example of how the Mexican government seeks to dismantle social (common) property in order to put it at the service of the interests of the market and the capitalists," stated the legal representative of the ejidatarios in opposition to the construction of the new airport terminal in San Salvador Atenco, Ricardo Lagunes.

This is how "the authorities aim to privatize the land" by legal means.

This is what the lawyer said during the last meeting with officials of the Higher Agrarian Court in which he sought the admission of this case.

Moreover Lagunes said that recently the 12th District Judge of Nezahualcoyotl admitted an amparo that will start the case 1016/2014 to validate or discard the minutes of the ejidal assembly held on 10th June which would change the land use of the hectares in dispute in San Salvador Atenco.

"It was submitted that the consideration of the assembly in favour of private ownership is a serious violation of the rights of the ejido and that what the ejidal commissioner of San Salvador Atenco is promoting is committing very serious offences"

The truth is that it remains clear to Lagunes that after the issuing of this ejidal resolution changing the land use, it not clear how many hectares could be part of this process of alienation of land by the state.

"They are behaving with a total opacity and lack of transparency so that not even the ejidatarios know how many hectares of land the commissioner is processing in to private ownership, according to the document signed by the Notary 113 of the State of Mexico which was handed over on 8th September."

He said that it is clear that the Ejidatarios of Atenco are now defending all the common use lands between the boundaries of Atenco with the Federal District and the so-called Cerro de Tepetzingo, since they risk being dispossessed of what they currently own, through illegal acts or records of illegal assembly.

"It’s like defending themselves from complete legal uncertainty," he said.

They will get an answer from this appeal on 15 October, in this context they announced that they will present necessary evidence to sustain the invalidity of the ejidal assembly.


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