EDUCA, Services for an Alternative Education was created in 1994 and is based in the City of Oaxaca de Juarez. Through its work in the area of territorial rights, it strives to strengthen and consolidate the leadership of social, regional and community organizations that fight for the defense of their right to territory. It also strives to make alternative proposals to current development policies.
Within the framework of the 12 years since the tragedy of the Pasta de Conchos mine in the coal region of Coahuila in Mexico, on 18th February 2018 representatives of the Family Organisation Pasta de Conchos presented the report "Red coal in Coahuila: here ends the silence", in Mexico City. This publication, supported by the Heinrich Böll Foundation, tells "the story of the human and environmental cost that the extraction of coal has brought and left" in this northern region of the country; it also documents the struggle that the family members of the 65 miners who lost their lives 12 years ago in the mine have undertaken.
From the 9th til 13th April, a delegation of lawyers from Spain visited the North of Mexico and Mexico City in order to hear first-hand accounts and to draw attention to the situation that lawyers who defend human rights find themselves in, they also wished to understand the state of implementation of the general laws of torture and forced disappearance as well as the strategies that the organisations and defenders use against the Internal Security Law.
According to the National Human Rights Commission (CNDH), during 2017 the number of refugees rose by 578%, and the Mexican Commission for Refugee Assistance recognised that there is a total of 14,594 people requesting refuge in Mexico. In response, the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees is collaborating with various refuges in the South of the country and with the Casa del Migrante de Saltillo in Coahila, to help extend spaces and attend the growing number of refugees.
In his most recent report, published on 23rd March 2018, the United Nations Special Rapporteur for Human Rights Defenders, Michel Forst, explicitly mentions those defending human rights in Chilapa de Alvarez, Guerreo and their particularly high levels of risk due to the hostile context in which they undertake their legitimate work: “Human rights defenders from Chilapa, where collective disappearances appear to have occurred with the acquiescence of the authorities, are particularly vulnerable to attacks in the context of organized crime and corruption”.
Experts in forensic anthropology from the Federal Prosecutor’s Office (PGR) carried out a new search for evidence in Atoyac, specifically at the former site of the 27th Infantry Battalion. Following Tita Radilla’s request, PBI accompanied AFADEM during this exercise.
En el marco de la implementación de esta sentencia, los peritos de antropología forense de la Procuraduría General de la República (PGR) realizaron nuevas diligencias en la ciudad de los servicios, dónde se encontraba el 27º Batallón de Infantería. A petición de Tita Radilla, PBI acompañó a AFADEM en el desarrollo de dichas diligencias.
The UN Special Rapporteur for indigenous people´s rights, Victoria Tauli-Corpuz, undertook an oficial visit to Mexico from 8th til the 17th November with the objective of "examining the implementation of the reccommendations given by (her) predecessor, Special Rapporteur Rodolfo Stavenhagen in 2003, and to evaluate how Mexico has incorporated its international human rights committments in relation to indigenous peoples.
In September, PBI provided international accompaniment to civil society organizations who defend the rights of migrants in in the state of Coahuila and who face risks due to their work. According to the report by the Citizens Council of the National Migration Institute (INM), in July 2017 the migrant population was subject to “violence and the excessive use of force by INM agents and other security forces in control and detention operatives” and crimes committed against migrants are met with impunity.
26 June was the International Day in Support of Victims of Torture, which was created to commemorate the implementation of the UN Convention against torture and other cruel, inhumane or degrading treatment. It is important to remember that in Mexico, at the federal level, the General Law to Prevent, Investigate and Sanction Torture and Other Cruel, Inhumane or Degrading treatment, was approved in the recent legislative period and came into effect on 26 June.