56 NGOs Appeal to the International Community from Oaxaca
Mexico is facing an unprecedented political crisis. The violence that has taken place during the current electoral process—21 political assassinations during the campaign season—far surpasses that of previous national elections and it is the outcome of impunity, corruption, violence, and collusion with organized crime perpetrated by both political parties and the government at all three levels.
The mobilizations that are taking place in Mexico are the result of a profound institutional and political crisis, arising from the series of reforms—labor, fiscal, electoral, energy, and educational—passed without the consensus of the population and pushed by the government of Enrique Peña Nieto to benefit national and transnational businesses, not the majority of the population.
The large presence of police and military in Oaxaca since the afternoon of June 5th—with the arrival of thousands of federal police officers, members of the gendarmerie, soldiers, and marines—to “safeguard” the federal midterm elections on June 7th and to recover the offices of the National Electoral Institute (INE by its initials in Spanish) that were occupied by the teachers’ union, do not contribute to generate a climate of trust and freedom needed for such a democratic exercise. The militarization of a social conflict shows an alarming return to authoritarianism.
On saturday, there have been clashes throughout the different regions in Oaxaca, the most serious have taken place in Huajuapan, Miahuatlán, Tuxtepec, and Pinotepa Nacional; in Salina Cruz, Tlaxiaco, and Cuicatlán teachers and the general population condemned the presence of members of the police and the military. This increases the risk of systemic human rights violations and the criminalization of social protest.
Today, as elections take place, there have been reports of ballot burning in areas of Oaxaca, Guerrero, Chiapas and elsewhere in the country. As organizations and groups working in these areas, we denounce the decision to carry on with elections in the context of current political and social conditions.
We remember that Oaxaca already experienced large-scale mobilizations and social protests in 2006, which were violently repressed by the federal police. The arbitrary detentions, extrajudicial executions, torture, and other human rights violations that were committed in 2006 are still unpunished.
Because of this, we, civil society organizations in Oaxaca, fear a replay of similar events, with the aggravating circumstance of military presence on the streets, as if social mobilization were analogous to organized crime. We believe that elections that take place within a militarized context do not have the necessary legitimacy.
We issue an URGENT APPEAL to international civil society, human rights organizations, the Office of the High Commissioner for Human Rights in Mexico, and foreign embassies, to demand that the military return to their barracks since they are carrying out public security duties that are outside of their jurisdiction. Also, we urge them to call on the federal government to prioritize dialogue and conciliation above the use of force.
Sincerely: ONGs of Oaxaca
Agencia de Desarrollo Local de la Chinantla A.C., Asesoría Integral y Litigios Estratégicos a Pueblos Originarios A.C., Calpulli A.C., Centro de Acción para el Desarrollo CODICE A.C., Centro de Apoyo al Movimiento Popular Oaxaqueño CAMPO A.C, Centro de Derechos Indígenas Flor y Canto A. C., Centro de Desarrollo Comunitario CENTÉOTL A.C., Centro de Encuentro Cultural Indígena, Centro de Derechos Humanos Tepeyac A.C., Casa Misión, Centro para los Derechos de la Mujer Nääxwiin A.C., Círculo Profesional para la Formación con Equidad de Género Nduva Ndandi A.C., Comité de América Latina y El Caribe para la Defensa de los Derechos de la Mujer CLADEM- OAXACA, Comité de Defensa Integral de Derechos Humanos Gobixha A.C., Comité de Familiares, amigas y amigos de Damián Gallardo, Consorcio para el Diálogo Parlamentario y la Equidad Oaxaca A.C., Colectivo Bolivariano, Colectivo Mujer Nueva, Colectivo Tutuma, Comunalidad y Desarrollo Bene Xhon A.C., Consejo Integrador de Productores de Amaranto del Estado de Oaxaca A.C., Consejo Popular Cívico de Xochimilco A.C., Ddeser-Oaxaca, Defensores Oaxaqueños por los Derechos Humanos Isabel A.C., Desarrollo Agroecológico Mixteco A.C., Diversidades y no Discriminación A.C., Empoderamiento Glocal A.C., Espacio de Encuentro de las Culturas Originarias A.C., Feminismo Comunitario Oaxaca, Fondo Regional de Pueblos Sector Zoogocho Che Yugosho A.C., Fundación Cultural Modesto Bernardo A.C., Fundación de Proyectos Estratégicos A.C., Fundación FEDALPA de la Costa A.C., Grupo de Estudios sobre la Mujer Rosario Castellanos A.C., Herramientas para el Buen Vivir A.C., IDEMO A.C., Iniciativa Ciudadana Oaxaca A.C., Integración y Desarrollo de Alternativas Sustentables IDEAS A.C., JUCOLAE, A.C., Juventud por Oaxaca A.C., Korami-Compartir A.C., LIMEDDH-Oaxaca, A.C., Luna del Sur A.C., Manos en Acción LODALCA A.C., Nueve Lunas S.C., Palabra Radio, PRODER A.C., Propuesta Integral para la Sustentabilidad A.C., Psicología con Enfoque Humano A.C., Red Nacional Católica de Jóvenes por el Derecho a Decidir, Red de Jóvenes Redefine Oaxaca, Servicios del Pueblo Mixe A.C., Servicios para una Educación Alternativa EDUCA A.C., Servicios Universitarios y Redes de Conocimientos en Oaxaca SURCO A.C., Sinergia para el Desarrollo Integral Sustentable A.C., Tequio Jurídico A.C., Tianguis Indígena Multicultural A.C., Universo Oaxaqueño para la Productividad y Solidaridad del Estado A.C., UNOSJO S.C., Unión de Comunidades Indígenas de la Zona Norte del Istmo UCIZONI A.C., Voces Oaxaca.