Urgent Action: Criminalization and an Immanent Risk of Repression Against the Nahua People of the Costa Sierra of Michoacán
La Red de Derechos Humanos Todos los Derechos para Todas y Todos, el Centro de Derechos Humanos Fray Bartolomé de Las Casas A.C., el Centro de Derechos Humanos Miguel Agustín Pro Juárez y la Asociación Jalisciense de Apoyo a los Grupos Indígena have information that the actions of criminalization against the exercise of the right to autonomous community protection has intensified. We are referring specifically to the public declaration of arrest orders against members of the community police of Santa María Ostula, Aquila, Pómaro and San Juan Huitzontla and the self-defense groups of the Costa Sierra of Michoacán in the municipalities of Chiniquila, Coahuayana and Aquila. There is particular concern regarding the risk of an attack against the personal freedom of community commander Germán Ramírez and the detention of community police member Aristóteles Flores Chávez.
These criminal actions motivated the Indigenous and popular assemblies of the region to carry out a protest action, using the blockade of the federal highway 200 and the taking of the municipal presidencies of Coahuayana, Aquila, and Chinicuila as their bargaining chip. We are aware of the public disqualifications by the Secretary of Public Security of Michoacán, Juan Bernando Corona Martínez, something we consider to not in any regard subscribe to the reality of life in the region.
In agreement with information obtained directly in the region, and in light of the antecedents of which we have referred, there exists a legitimate preoccupation and well-founded concern of the immanent risk of repression on part of the federal, state, and criminal security forces.
We remember that similarly, with the motive of the detention of Cemeí Verdía, one of the leaders of the community police, July 19th, 2015, in the mark of a operation carried out by the Mexican Army, Federal Police and State Police, carried out actions that resulted in the violent invasion of the community of Santa María Ostula that left one child dead allegedly by members of the military, various people injured and multiple indirect victims.
To the signatory organizations of human rights, we are concerned that in spite of existing cautious measures being taken in favor of Santa María Ostula dictated by the Interamerican Commission of Human Rights, there has been no effect. This is due to the unwillingness of the Mexican State to attend in an integral manner to the demands of the community in matters of security and justice, what has put in risk the life and integrity of the habitants.
We are aware of the multiple denunciations of arbitrary executions and disappearances that have risen in number in the region without having received effective responses on part of the competent authorities. This omission extends to the reiterated denunciations of the community for Federico González and Mario Álvarez López to be detained, the two inhabitants named as responsible for the acts.
We call on the government of Michoacán and to the Federal Government to privilege dialogue, attend to the problem that is of maximum urgency, focusing on the plain knowledge of the right of the Indigenous peoples to exercise their own forms of protection and justice. Furthermore, the undeniable and fundamental support of the self-defense groups in the municipalities of Chiniquila, Coahuayana, and Aquila, an example of an organization to recuperate peace and security violated by criminality and corruption.
In the same sense, the call on the Mexican State to guarantee the security, personal integrity and life of the thousands of people in the Costa-Sierra region, as well as to insure a climate in which the mechanisms of dialogue prevail and the community agreements are respected.
Please send your letters to firstname.lastname@example.org and direct your interventions to:
Presidente Enrique Peña Nieto.
Fax: (+52) 55 5093 4901.
Silvano Aureoles Conejo, Gobernador Constitucional del Estado de Michoacán.
Teléfono: (+52) 443 322-90-00 ext:109
Miguel Ángel Osorio Chong, Secretario de Gobernación (Ministro del Interior).
Fax: + (+52) 55 5093 34 14.
Raúl Cervantes Andrade, Titular de la Procuraduría General de la República (PGR)
Roberto Campa Cifrián, Subsecretaria de Asuntos Jurídicos y Derechos Humanos de la Secretaría de Gobernación.
Fax: (+52) 55 5728 7400 Ext. 24586.
Paulo Abrao; Comisión Interamericana de Derechos Humanos
1889 F St. N.W. Washington, DC, U.S.A. 20006
Teléfono: (202) 370-9000 / Fax: (202) 458-36
Jan Jařab, representante en México de la Oficina del Alto Comisionado de las Naciones Unidas para los Derechos Humanos.
Translated from the original here: https://www.centrodemedioslibres.org/2016/11/16/accion-urgente-criminalizacion-y-riesgo-inminente-de-represion-contra-el-pueblo-nahua-de-la-costa-sierra-de-michoacan/