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September 26 marks the second anniversary of the night student teachers were attacked by police in the city of Iguala, Guerrero. Three students and three bystanders were killed in the attacks and 43 students were disappeared. The case sparked months of angry demonstrations in Mexico that seriously damaged President Enrique Peña Nieto's image both at home and abroad.
“This is one of the worst cases of human rights violations seen in Mexico’s recent history. Two years later, the Mexican government has done very little to help these wounds heal. It is shocking that, despite dedicating significant resources, the Mexican government has not found the students, and that its own officials have obstructed the investigation,” said Maureen Meyer, Senior Associate for Mexico at WOLA.
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Has a corporation ever made you feel vulnerable? Have your rights been ignored? Does it seem that businesses have no oversight? Then this may be of interest to you.In 2011, the United Nations Human Rights Council issued Guiding Principles on Business and Human Rights. The principles reiterate that nations must control business activities, that corporations must respect human rights, and that victims must have access to justice. The Council also created the Working Group on Business and Human Rights to put these principles into action. The Working Group will visit Mexico from August 29 to September 7. This visit will be its second to Latin America, after a mission to Brazil in December 2015.
Astrid Puentes Riaño, Co-Executive Director of the Interamerican Association for Environmental Defense (AIDA), writes that "the UN Working Group aims for its visit to be an important event for human rights in Mexico. We hope its conclusions reflect what the country really needs. We hope that both business and government welcome the visit, take the recommendations seriously, and demonstrate the political will to act on them." Read the article:
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This year’s theme for the International Day of the World’s Indigenous Peoples on 9 August focuses on the right to education. The right of indigenous peoples to education is protected by the UN Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples, which in Article 14 states that “Indigenous peoples have the right to establish and control their educational systems and institutions providing education in their own languages, in a manner appropriate to their cultural methods of teaching and learning.”
The right of indigenous peoples to education is also protected by a number of other international human rights instruments, including the Universal Declaration of Human Rights. The 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development adopted by world leaders in September 2015 and the Sustainable Develop Goal 4 further underline this right, calling for eliminating gender disparities in education and ensuring equal access to all levels of education and vocational training, including for indigenous peoples.
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On June 19, the southern Mexican state of Oaxaca was the scene of a senseless massacre. The bloody battle took place in the rural town of Nochixtlan and resulted in the death of at least nine civilians. “Right now, the federal police are withdrawing, going back to their vehicles,”said a witness of the attack as he filmed the horrific scene. Bullets are heard smashing against metal traffic barriers on the roadside as the camera image shakes. Taking heavy breaths he calmly continued, “And as they retreat, they are shooting at us with firearms.”
A week earlier, police crackdowns had begun in various regions of Oaxaca state. These acts of violence are occurring in light of current protests in Oaxaca, where — since May 15— the teachers’ movement has set up a peaceful plantón, or encampment, in the city center, and dozens of roadblocks across the state, including Nochixtlan. The teachers demanded a dialogue with the local and federal government about a recently approved education overhaul and the implementation of its neoliberal policies in Oaxaca.
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SIGN THIS URGENT ACTION ONLINE
To the international community
To the government of Nicaragua
To the governments of Argentina, Costa Rica, Spain, and Mexico
On June 25, 2016, six members of the Mesoamerican Caravan were arbitrarily harassed and detained by the National Police of Nicaragua, while they were in the municipality of Nueva Guinea giving a workshop on firewood-saving stoves to residents of the Fonseca neighborhood.