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First Regional Forum Regarding the Mining Industry and its Impact on Indigenous Communities

By 29 agosto, 2013 Sin Comentarios

Teitipac. pq Teitipac Declaration available as a PDF download (3 pag.)

The peoples, communities, and organizations that have gathered in the community of Magdalena Teitipac to analyze the impact of the mining industry on the region of the Tlacolula valley in Oaxaca; as well as to share the experiences of resistance of other affected communities and towns by mining projects both in their territory as well as in social issues.

We live at present under an economic and political model based in the “accelerated” extraction of our common goods such as minerals, water, forests, oil, gas, coal, and knowledge, through the plunder and the mercantilism of our ancestral lands.

Under the imposition of this “extractive” model, we, the inheritors of the ancient Anahuac peoples of Abya Yala (Mesoamerica), are fighting against a transnational hegemonic process that destroys our social, economic, political, and symbolic systems of organization.

In order to implement this model, the both federal and state governments, based on international treaties and agreements, are establishing a strategy to protect their investments through structural reforms in agrarian, labor, educational, “hacendarias”, and justice institutions, with the backing of the political, military, and financial powers representing the (extractive) enterprises. The national State becomes guarantor of the investments of transnational and multilateral financial institutions. In this sense, the governments by opting for a predatory capitalism or becoming partners with international enterprises become the enemy of our peoples.

To face this extractive model, we have decided to weave our resistance, by strengthening our communal structures such as assemblies, communal authorities, maintaining the control of our communal territory, and strengthening our historic memory.

The time when the government represented an absolute power is a thing of the past. A new relationship with the government is necessary, in which the indigenous peoples decide the destiny of our territories.

In the face of the great threat to the valleys of Tlacolula, Oaxaca, and our ancient Anahuac represented by the mining industry; we make a call to the Zapotec people of the valley in order to strengthen our communal organizations and the traditions and customs that have helped us to maintain as communities and as a people; generating our brotherhood and commitments based on our knowledge, where the defense of our territory constitutes the base of our declaration.

In order to defend life, our sacred spaces, our forests, rivers, mountains, springs, our sons and daughters, we DEMAND:

•Change in the present economic and political model that allows for the pillage of the territories. The respect to the decisions of the peoples shall be fundamental part in a new relationship with the government-states. This signifies the exercise of the right to the free determination of the indigenous, peasant, and rural peoples.

•The cancellation of all those mining projects where the communities reject the extractive model in our Oaxacan entities.

That the procedures of community consultation be respected -supported by the agreement 169, signed by Mexico with the OIT Convention No.169 –which constitutes an ancestral practice of the peoples to participate and decision taking, as well as these results be considered binding; these consultations represent a substantive right in the protection of the fundamental rights of the original peoples of Abya Yala ( America). ADDED: ITO AGREEMENT 169: (–en/index.htm) is a legally binding international instrument open to ratification,. which deals specifically with the rights of indigenous and tribal peoples. Today, it has been ratified by 20 countries. Once it ratifies the Convention, a country has one year to align legislation, policies and programs to the Convention before it becomes legally binding. Countries that have ratified the Convention are subject to supervision with regards to its implementation

•Justice for all the women and men who for defending the territories have been criminalized, threatened, attacked and murdered in our state and country.

•A stop to the provocation, repression, persecution and criminalization against the pacific struggle of San José del Progreso, Oaxaca.  ADDED: (the Cuzcatlán/Trinidad mine in San Jose´del Progreso is owned by Canadian company Fortuna Silver, based in Vancouver, Canada.  The Canadian government´s Pension Plan is an investor in Fortuna Silver´s Cuzcatlán mine, last year the most violent site in Mexico related to anti-mining community activists.

•Cancellation of the criminal demands of the ex-commissary of Communal Property and Council of Vigilance, against the citizens and community members of Magdalena Teitipac. (The women and men participating in the Forum recognize the important and vital role of the women in the struggle for life and in the defense of the territory in Oaxaca, especially by the women of Magdalena Teitipac.) Our wealth is not measured by the quantity of minerals produced; but rather by our knowledge, the ways we relate and respect the mother earth, practices of social and cultural organization of our peoples and communities. The aggressions against our peoples produce a deep wound, in view of which we DEMAND:

The cancellation of mining concessions and acknowledgement and ratification of the “NO” to mining by the general assembly of community and citizens of Magdalena Teitipac.

The cancellation of mining concessions and acknowledgement and ratification of the “NO” to mining by the general assembly of community and citizens of Capulálpam de Mendez, Oaxaca, as well as the definitive closure of the mining company Natividad y Anexas

The cancellation of Fortuna Silver´s Cuzcatlán/Trinidad mining project in San José del Progreso, Oaxaca.

The municipality of San José del Progreso, Oaxaca. The cancellation of the mining concessions granted in the region of the central valleys, as well as the punishment to those responsible of the crimes executed against the Coordinadora de los pueblos unidos ( Coordinating committee of the united peoples) in the Valley of Ocotlan since 2006.

•The cancellation of the Government’s social programs in Magdalena Teitipac that attempt against the communal integrity.

•We express our solidarity in the struggle of the Coordinadora de los pueblos unidos ( Coordinating committee of the united peoples ) for the care of and defense of the Water in the districts of Ocotlan and Zimatlan.

•Justice for Beti Carino and Jyri Jaakola.

A stop to the permanent harassment against the communities resisting the mega-project of wind power in the Isthmus of Tehuantepec by the state government of Oaxaca and the company Marena Renovables. We have the right to say NO to imposed forms of development, and to decide our forms of economic production, social, political and cultural ways.

•For the Defense of Our Territories and Culture: Yes to Life, No to Mining in the state of Oaxaca.


Communities: Magdalena Teitipac, San Pablo Güilá. San José del Progreso, San Juan Guelavía, Teotitlán del Valle, San Juan Teitipac, Capulálpam de Méndez, Santa Cruz Papalutla, San Dionisio Ocotepec, San Bartolomé Quialana, San Marcos Tlapazola, Santa Cecilia Jalietza 
Organizaciones sociales-civiles: Colectivo Oaxaqueño en Defensa de los Territorios, Unión de Organizaciones de la Sierra Juárez de Oaxaca-UNOSJO S.C. Servicios para una Educación Alternativa-EDUCA A.C., Servicios del Pueblo Mixe- Ser Mixe A.C. Centro de Derechos Indígenas Flor y Canto A.C., Tequio Jurídico A.C., Centro de Derechos Humanos Miguel Agustín Pro Juárez-Centro Prodh A.C., Coordinadora de Pueblos Unidos del Valle de Ocotlán-CPUVO, Servicios Universitarios y Redes de Conocimiento en Oaxaca SURCO A.C., Centro de Estudios de la Región Cuicateca-CEREC, Ojo de Agua Comunicación, A.C. 
Magdalena Teitipac, Oaxaca, Agosto 17 de 2013.