Magdalena Ocotlán, Oaxaca, October 22, 2012.
URGENT ACTION: Put a stop to the mining that affects indigenous communities in Oaxaca, Mexico!
Today, October 22, 2012, approximately at 7am workers and machinery from the Cuzcatlán mining company, subsidiary of the Canadian mining company, Fortuna Silver Mines, started to install a 20 inch diameter hose to conduct water from the town of Ocotlán de Morelos to the company’s facilities in San José del Progreso. Around 80 to 100 agents of the state police and the Auxiliary Bank Police, under the command of Juan Martínez Cruz Rocha, police inspector of the Department of Regional Security, are guarding the installation of the hose.
Around 140 inhabitants of the towns of San José del Progreso and Magdalena Ocotlán and the municipal authorities form Magdalena Ocotlán remained at the scene to demand the exhibition of the permits to carry out the installation of the hose. Considering that neither the state nor the federal authorities provided any information, the group of people demanded that the works be stopped and that the police are removed until authorities can provide certainty to the residents of both towns.
During the morning, the police arrested two people: Efraín Dionisio Cruz and his son Carlos Efraín Dionisio Pérez, who carried a gun and a rambo knife with which they threatened Ángel Vásquez and Leovigildo Vásquez Sánchez, members of the Ocotlán Valley United Peoples Coordinator (CPUVO). The armed people that were arrested by the police work for the mining company and are connected to the municipal president of San José del Progreso, Alberto Mauro Sánchez.
Additionally, Ignacio Jesús Pérez was injured by Juan Martínez Cruz Rocha, who identifies himself as Inspector Rocha from the Department of Regional Security from the state police, when the former asked the latter who was supervising the works carried out in the town of Magdalena Ocotlán.
We have information that the population of Magdalena Ocotlán and San José del Progreso was never consulted before the installation of the hose was authorized. The municipal authorities from Magdalena Ocotlán never issued a permit to that effect. Until 7pm yesterday the works were still in progress and were still generating social tension and creating the conditions for repression against the inhabitants of Magdalena Ocotlán and San José del Progreso.
Given these events, we call for the following:
- The immediate intervention by the government of the state of Oaxaca to stop the installation of the hose in the town of Magdalena Ocotlán, Oaxaca.
- The immediate removal of the police from Magdalena Ocotlán to prevent confrontation and repression.
- To withdraw the authorization by the state and federal government to install the hose in the territory of Magdalena Ocotlán and San José del Progreso, considering that no consultation process took place to obtain consent from both populations.
- To ensure the security and physical integrity of the inhabitants of San José del Progreso and Magdalena Ocotlán, as well as to ensure the right of the inhabitants to the free expression of their legitimate concerns.
- We demand the state attorney office of Oaxaca to prosecute those responsible for the murder of Bernardo Méndez Vásquez and the injuries caused to Abigail Vásquez Sánchez on January 18, 2012, as well as the murder of Bernardo Vásquez Sánchez and injuries caused to Andrés Vásquez Sánchez and Rosalinda Dionisio Sánchez on March 15, 2012. We also demand that Efraín Dionisio Cruz and his son Carlos Efraín Dionisio Pérez, arrested on October 22, 2012, are punished for their acts.
- We view the Cuzcatlán mining company, subsidiary of Canadian Fortuna Silver Mines, the municipal president of San José del Progreso, Mauro Alberto Sanchez, the Governor of the state of Oaxaca, Gabino Cue Monteagudo, the head of the Ministry of Infrastructure and Sustainable Land Management, Nezahualcóyotl Salvatierra López and the Secretary of Public Security, Marco Tulio López Escamilla, as responsible for any acts of repression and violence that may arise in the towns of San José del Progreso and Magdalena Ocotlan, Oaxaca.
- We demand that the integrity of the Zapoteco indigenous territories of San José del Progreso and Magdalena Ocotlán, as well as any future decision to protect them, is respected, based on the commitments and priority issues of the current government: “Indigenous peoples and human rights”.
Personal signature or organization
Please write to:
Lic. Gabino Cue Monteagudo
Gobernador Constitucional del Estado de Oaxaca.
Palacio de Gobierno (Planta Alta), Plaza de la Constitución, Centro Histórico, Oaxaca de Juárez, Oaxaca, C.P. 68000
Tel.: 01 (951) 501 81 00
Lic. Jesús Martínez Álvarez
Secretario de Gobierno del Estado de Oaxaca.
Ciudad Administrativa Benemérito de las Américas
Carretera Oaxaca-Istmo Km. 11.5, Tlalixtac de Cabrera, Oaxaca C.P. 68270
Tel: (951) 50 1 50 00
Lic. Manuel de Jesús López López.
Procurador General de Justicia del Estado de Oaxaca.
Dirección Oficial: Centro Administrativo del Poder Ejecutivo y Judicial Gral. Porfirio Díaz, Soldado de la Patria.
Colonia: Edificio Jesús Chu Rasgado. Segundo Nivel. Reyes Mantecón, San Bartolo Coyotepec Oaxaca. Tel: (951) 501 69 00 ext. 20769 / 20602
Mtra. Eréndira Cruzvillegas
Coordinadora para la Atención de los Derechos Humanos del Gobierno del Estado.
Dirección Oficial: Palacio de Gobierno (Planta Alta), Plaza de la Constitución, Centro Histórico, Oaxaca de Juárez, Oaxaca
Tel: (951) 501 5000 Ext. 40056
Lic. Arturo Peimbert Calvo.
Defensor de los Derechos Humanos del Pueblo de Oaxaca.
Calle de los Derechos Humanos No 210, Col América, Oaxaca Oaxaca.
Tel: (951) 50 30 52 00
Colectivo Oaxaqueño en Defensa de los Territorios
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Photos of the facts described above
PDF: Urgent Action Put a stop to the mining that affects indigenous communities in Oaxaca, Mexico!
Spanish: Acción Urgente: Alto inmediato a los trabajos de la minera Cuzcatlán para la introducción de agua en territorio de Magdalena Ocotlan y San José del Progreso, Oaxaca, México