San Francisco Xochicuautla, el pueblo otomí que se niega a someterse

SAN FRANCISCO XOCHICUAUTLA: OTOMÍ PEOPLE WHO REFUSE TO SUBMIT

Publicada originalmente en Centro de Derechos Humanos.

 

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Desde el día 18 de junio de 2015 hasta el día 7 de julio del mismo año la comunidad Indígena de San Francisco Xochicuautla, Lerma, Estado de México ha sido sitiada por trabajadores de la empresa Autovan S.A de C.V los cuales están permanentemente custodiados por Policías Estatales, personal del Gobierno Estatal y Policía Ministerial.

Por enésima vez los indígenas otomíes de Xochicuautla resisten el embate de las fuerzas gubernamentales y empresariales quienes se han empeñado en imponer un megaproyecto carretero el cual de realizarse partiría a la mitad sus tierras ancestrales y sus lugares sagrados.

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Policías respaldan el avance de la maquina

Xochicuautla sostiene una resistencia civil pacífica a este proyecto concesionado a una filial del Grupo Higa desde el año 2007. Han sido años repletos de acciones legales, diversas movilizaciones, las cuales han buscado la cancelación definitiva de este acto de agresión a la naturaleza y a la vida de un pueblo mexiquense.

En mayo de 2013 y noviembre de 2014 la comunidad indígena sufrió detenciones de varios de sus integrantes por la imputación de “oposición a la obra pública”, jóvenes y adultos mayores fueron detenidos y trasladados a la Cd. de Toluca para amedrentar la resistencia, sin embargo, dichos actos arbitrarios no pudieron sostenerse y las personas recuperaron su libertad casi inmediatamente.

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EL pueblo digno de Xochicuautla se opone al ingreso de la maquina

Sin embargo, a pesar de los recursos jurídicos interpuestos, la falta de consulta libre previa e informada a la población indígena y el daño ambiental que ocasionaría la obra, la empresa Autovan S.A. de C.V. y gobierno insisten en imponerla con garrote en mano haciendo caso omiso a los llamados estatales y nacionales para su cancelación e iniciar procesos de diálogo con la comunidad.

Ante esta situación el Centro de Derechos Humanos Zeferino Ladrillero decidió mantener monitoreo y presencia permanente en la comunidad a efecto de observar directamente el proceder de las autoridades mexiquenses y la empresa en cuestión.

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La policía estatal realiza una valla al mando del comandante S. Cruz T.

Con nuestra labor de observación civil hemos verificado que los indígenas otomíes defensores de derechos humanos se encuentran en un alto riesgo de ser agredidos físicamente e incluso injustamente detenidos/aprehendidos por su labor de defensa de pueblos indígenas y medioambiental, así como constatamos que no existen señales de voluntad de gobierno y empresa para respetar la decisión del pueblo otomí.

Por lo anterior es que consideramos indispensable hacer del conocimiento público que en el Estado de México se prepara una nueva represión-imposición si es que la sociedad civil nacional e internacional, pueblos, organizaciones sociales, personas dignas y nobles no hacen lo que está a su alcance para evitarla. Es en ese entendido que este Centro de Derechos Humanos llama la atención de todas las organizaciones, pueblos y personas para respaldar la digna resistencia del pueblo de Xochicuautla.

Por nuestra parte fortaleceremos nuestra observación en el territorio y acompañaremos a las personas indígenas a hacer del conocimiento de instituciones y organizaciones internacionales la delicada situación que atraviesan los indígenas defensores de derechos humanos del estado de México.

Niños, niñas, jóvenes y mujeres de la comunidad en defensa de sus tierras

Desde que nos constituimos como organización de la sociedad civil para participar en la defensa de derechos humanos en el Estado de México lo hicimos convencidos de que los derechos humanos son una herramienta que debe estar a la disposición de la emancipación de los pueblos, hoy la lucha de Xochicuautla refrenda y fortalece nuestra determinación, porque es precisamente en la lucha de los pueblos y personas comunes donde se gesta la construcción de un mundo con dignidad humana.

 

We, as Yes to Life No to Mining, stand in solidarity with the people of Xochicuautla. Their struggle may be against rampant road-building rather than mining, but our fights are intimately linked.

Just as in many mining struggles,  government authorities and companies have not adhered to the principle of Free, Prior and Informed Consent. They have not respected the voices of the community and their choice to say ‘NO’ to this ‘development’- as is their right. The construction and destruction is carried on with threats, violence and single-mindedness. Furthermore, such road building is very often a harmful result of, or step towards, the wanton extraction of resources through mining. The Otomí peoples’ struggle is our struggle.


Article originally published in Spanish on The Center for Human Rights and was translated and republished on Intercontinental Cry.

 

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San Francisco Xochicuautla, Lerma, State of Mexico – July 8, 2015 – From June 18 to July 7, 2015 the indigenous community of San Francisco Xochicuatla, Lerma was besieged by workers of the company “Autovan S. A de C. V”, who are permanently guarded by state police—staff of the state government and ministerial police.

For the umpteenth time the Otomí Indians of Xochicuautla resisted the onslaught of government forces and a company that is committed to imposing a highway megaproject which, if carried out, will split in half their ancestral lands and sacred places.

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Xochicuautla has maintained a peaceful civil resistance to this project, concessioned to the subsidiary Grupo Higa, since 2007. For years, they have pursued legal action and various mobilizations which have sought the definitive cancellation of this act of aggression against nature and the lives of indigenous peoples in Mexico.

In May 2013 and November 2014 the indigenous community suffered arrests of several of its members by the imputation of “opposition to public works”—young people and older adults were arrested and transferred to the city of Toluca to intimidate the resistance. Fortunately, the arbitrary acts couldn’t be sustained and the people regained their freedom almost immediately.

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In spite of the legal remedies filed, the lack of free, prior and informed consent with the indigenous population, and the environmental damage that would result from the work, the company Autovan S. A. de C. V. and the government insist on imposing it with sticks in hand—ignoring state and national-level calls for its cancellation and the initiation of dialogue with the community.

In the face of this situation, the Center for Human Rights Zeferino Ladrillero decided to monitor and maintain a permanent presence in the community to see directly the offenses of the Mexican authorities and the company in question.

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Through our civilian observation, we have verified that the Otomí indigenous human rights defenders are at a high risk of being physically assaulted and unjustly detained/arrested for their work in defense of indigenous peoples and the environment. We also observe that there are no signs of willingness on the part of both the government and company to respect the decision of the Otomí people.

This is why we believe it is vital to make public the knowledge that the State of Mexico is preparing a new imposed repression—unless national and international civil society, social organizations, and individuals do what is within their reach to avoid it. It is with this understanding that this Center for Human Rights calls the attention of all organizations, villages, and people to support the worthy resistance of the people of Xochicuautla.

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For our part, we will strengthen our observation in the territory and we will support the indigenous people in educating international institutions and organizations about the difficult situation facing indigenous human rights defenders in the state of Mexico.

Since we became organized as a civil society organization, in order to participate in the defense of human rights in the state of Mexico, we are convinced that human rights are a tool that must be available to the emancipation of indigenous peoples. Today the struggle of Xochicuatla reinforces and strengthens our determination, because it is precisely in the struggle of the indigenous peoples and communal peoples where the construction of a world with human dignity is birthed.

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