SIPAZ Activities (From mid-November 2010 to mid-February 2011)28/02/2011
ANALYSIS: Current Events: Seeking alternatives to increasing militarization31/08/2011
INTERNATIONAL PRESENCE AND ACCOMPANIMENT
- In March, SIPAZ visited Margarita Martínez, human-rights defender who has received several death-threats and been attacked over the past year.
- From December to the present, we have been accompanying the Fray Bartolomé de Las Casas Center for Human Rights.
- We were present at the monthly commemoration of the Acteal massacre, municipality of Chenalhó, in February. On 8 March SIPAZ was present as observers in the march/pilgrimage of around 500 members of the Civil Organization, Las Abejas as well as their protest before the military base at Majomut, where the soldiers impeded their passage to enter in order to offer a prayer.
- At the beginning of May, SIPAZ visited the community of Nuevo Paraíso (community of returned Abejas, in the municipality of Pantelhó), after this community received new death-threats-
- In March, a member of the team participated for 15 days in the Civil Observation Brigades (BRICOS) in Agua Clara, municipality of Salto de Agua.
- At the beginning of April, SIPAZ visited the headquarters of the Digna Ochoa Center for Human Rights in Tonalá, where it offered to provide international accompaniment in light of the harassment suffered by the staff there since the year’s start.
- Between February and May, SIPAZ visited 4 of the Zapatista caracoles at least once.
- In March, SIPAZ visited Alberto Patishtán, prisoner in the San Cristóbal de Las Casas prison and member of the “Voz del Amate,” an organization of prisoners who are adherents to the Other Campaign, as well as other prisoners in solidarity with the “Voz del Amate.”
- In February and May, SIPAZ attended the Assembly of Diocene Coordination of Women (CODIMUJ) in San Cristóbal de Las Casas.
- On 7 and 8 March, in observation of International Women’s Day in Chiapas, SIPAZ attended various activities in San Cristóbal de Las Casas and Chenalhó.
- In March, SIPAZ carried out a 10-day visit to the state of Oaxaca. SIPAZ held interviews with various civil and social organizations in Oaxaca de Juárez as well as with the new commissioner on Human Rights of the state government. On 13 and 14 March, SIPAZ was present at Pinotepa Nacional during a cultural festival and mobilization in defense of the Río Verde and against the planned hydraulic dam Paso de la Reyna that had been called for by the Council of Peoples in Defense of the Río Verde (COPUDEVER). Finally, we visited the migrant-house “Brothers on the path” in Ixtepec, whose personnel, and particularly Padre Solalinde, have received several death-threats for the work they carry out.
- In February and May, SIPAZ had a meeting with the representative for Chiapas of the United Nations High Commissioner on Human Rights in Mexico.
- On 9 and 10 March, SIPAZ attended a Forum for dialogue on Culture of Peace, Local Development, and Internal Displacement of Persons called for by the United Nations Development Program (UNDP) and the state-government of Chiapas. The objectives of the Forum were to share knowledge as well as make-visible, quantify, and address the problem of the internally displaced toward the end of developing a political or juridical regime in this regard.
- At the beginning of May, we had a meeting with the recently integrated State Council on Human Rights in Chiapas to better familiarize ourselves with its work and perspectives regarding the human-rights situation in the state.
- On 16 and 17 March, in observation of the XXII anniversary of the birth of the Fray Bartolomé de Las Casas Center for Human Rights, we attended the meeting “With Memory, the Peoples Build Justice and Truth,” carried out in the Indigenous Center for Wholesome Training CIDECI-Unitierra in San Cristóbal de las Casas.
- On 28 and 29 April, SIPAZ attended the Second National Meeting of Human-Rights Defenders carried out in Mexico City. It was entitled “Toward a mechanism of protection for civil society.”
- On 7 May, SIPAZ attended as observers the march called for by the EZLN carried out in San Cristóbal de Las Casas.
PROMOTION OF PEACE
WORK WITH RELIGIOUS ACTORS
- In March, SIPAZ participated in an ecumenical space of prayer and reflection called for by the Ecumenical Group of Analysis of the Situation and Reality (GEACR) of which SIPAZ forms a part.
EDUCATION FOR PEACE
- In February and April, SIPAZ facilitated spaces of learning regarding different aspects of the positive transformation of conflicts in the Mayense Intercultural Seminar (SIM).
- SIPAZ participated in the bi-monthly meetings of the Peace Network, a space of action and reflection made up of 11 organizations that seek to support peace and reconciliation processes in Chiapas. On 27 February, as part of the Network, SIPAZ visited the prisoners of the Other Campaign in San Sebastián Bachajón who have been detained since the beginning of February in the State Center for Social Reinsertion of the Sentenced No. 17, in the municipality of Playas de Catazajá.
- In February the “Jtatic Samuel Jcanan Lum” Award was presented, this time not to a representative but rather to assemblies of two processes that had received the award in January due to their work for and commitment to the defense of human rights and reconciliation: Xi’nich and the Believing People. Together with other organizations both local and national, SIPAZ participated in the organization of this prize.
- From 3 to 5 March, SIPAZ participated in a workshop and meeting of the North American counterparts of the Global Alliance for the Prevention of Armed Conflicts, of which SIPAZ forms a part, held in San Cristóbal de Las Casas.
- SIPAZ had meetings with different groups of its coalition: MITF (Marin Inter Faith Task Force on the Americas, US); Carea, (Germany); Witness for Peace (US); and SweFOR (Sweden).
- SIPAZ received visits from delegations, students, journalists, and members of our coalition interested in knowing and learning about the situation in Chiapas and SIPAZ’s work.
- SIPAZ continued researching the question of “Tying together gender work and peace,” which has led us to carry out meetings with various women’s groups and organizations in Chiapas and Guerrero. For example, SIPAZ was present at an assembly of female members of Las Abejas in April.
- SIPAZ attended meetings of the Latin America Solidarity Coalition (LASC) in Washington between 8 and 10 April.