dorset chiapas solidarity

March 14, 2014

Violence persists against the people forcibly displaced from ejido Puebla

Filed under: Displacement, Frayba, Human rights, Indigenous — Tags: , — dorsetchiapassolidarity @ 7:03 pm

25 años Frayba caminando con los Pueblos Centro de Derechos Humanos  Fray Bartolomé de Las Casas, A.C

25 AÑOS CAMINANDO CON LOS PUEBLOS

San Cristóbal de Las Casas, Chiapas, México

12 de marzo de 2014

Boletín No. 08

Violence persists against the people forcibly displaced from ejido Puebla

They burn the home of a displaced family

According to information documented by the Fray Bartolomé de Las Casas Human Rights Centre (Frayba), today, in the ejido Puebla, Chenalhó, at approximately 01:30 hours, the house of the family of Normelina Hernández López and Macario Arias Gómez – forcibly displaced since August 23, 2013, along with 17 other families, totalling 100 people, who are now in the community of Acteal, Chenalhó – was totally burned down. A few days earlier, on March 7, 2014, at 06:30 hrs, José Gómez Cruz, found the door of the catechists’ room burned. It is noteworthy that these events occurred despite the presence of about 30 members of the State Preventive Police who did not realize what had happened.

Following these events, the Centre for Human Rights expresses its concern about the persistent climate of violence and the risky situation in which the forcibly displaced families find themselves. Given the seriousness of recent events, their return will be more difficult.

We hold responsible for this situation, through failure to act, the government officials who, instead of seeking justice, maintain and allow the impunity which creates tension and violence1.

To mention a few examples of impunity: on July 20, 2013 , the same authorities of ejido Puebla arbitrarily arrested two support bases of the Zapatista Army of National Liberation: Mariano Méndez Méndez and Luciano Méndez Hernández, and another person from the ejido: Juan Lopez Méndez, with the false accusation of having poisoned the water of the community2; on August 21, 2013 , Manuel Pérez Gómez, pastor of Chenalhó, was arbitrarily deprived of his liberty for seven and a half hours3, and on 21 August, 2013, due to the level of violence reached, 17 families were forcibly displaced4.

Frayba has expressed, repeatedly, our concern about the lack of access to justice which causes increased violence and the status of forced displacement of the 100 people. This signifies a continuing violation of the rights: to personal integrity, freedom of movement, residence and housing, established under universal instruments promoted, signed and ratified by the Mexican government, including: the American Convention on Human Rights articles 5 ° and 22 °, and the International Covenant on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights article 11, first paragraph, as well as the non-implementation of the Guiding Principles on Internal Displacement.

Background:

On February 26, 2014, in the ejido Puebla, Eduardo Ramírez Aguilar, General Secretary of Government and Victor Hugo Sánchez Zebadúa, Secretary for Religious Affairs, officially handed over the estate of the Catholic chapel to the Diocese of San Cristobal de Las Casas, in this act Agustín Cruz Gómez, ejidal Commissioner, was present as the legal representative of the ejido Puebla.

Beginning of the events:

On April 7, 2013, in the ejido Puebla, Chenalhó, 32 believing families of the Catholic religion made an agreement to start the refurbishment and reconstruction of the new chapel, because the former was deteriorating, resulting in a risk to the population. From that day there have been a series of acts of physical aggression, arbitrary detentions, cruel, inhuman and degrading treatment, destruction, theft and forced displacement against 17 families.

1 Impunidad ante desplazamiento forzado de 98 personas del ejido Puebla, available at: http://frayba.org.mx/archivo/boletines/131017_pronunciamiento_puebla.doc.pdf

2 Escala la violencia en el ejido Puebla, available at: http://frayba.org.mx/archivo/acciones_urgentes/130720_au_02_ejido_puebla.pdf; http://frayba.org.mx/archivo/acciones_urgentes/130721_act_au_02_puebla.pdf

3 Liberan bajo presión al párroco de Chenalhó Manuel Pérez Gómez, available at: http://frayba.org.mx/archivo/boletines/130823_boletin_22_ejido_puebla.pdf

4 Desplazamiento forzado de 70 personas del ejido Puebla, available at: http://frayba.org.mx/archivo/acciones_urgentes/130823_au_04_desplazados_chenalho.pdf

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