Thursday, April 26, 2018

UNPFII 2018 Agenda Item 4: Implementation of the Six Mandated Areas

United Nations
Permanent Forum on Indigenous Issues 
17th Session, 17-27 April 2018 

Agenda Item 4: Implementation of the Six Mandated Areas 
19 APRIL 2018

Issues of Accountability, Discrimination, and Impunity
regarding implementation of the six mandated areas of the UN Permanent Forum on Indigenous Issues: economic and social development, culture, the environment, education, health and human rights.

As I speak with you here now we are obligated to recall the previous testimony given to the Permanent Forum three years ago in 2015 by Maria Tlatempa Bello, and then once again two years ago by Antonio Tizapa, both parents of the 43 Forcibly Disappeared students from Raul Isidro Burgos Rural School of Ayotzinapa, Guerrero, Mexico.

The violent abduction of the still missing 43 students on the evening of September 26, 2014 in Iguala, Guerrero also resulted in the death that same evening of six others, and occurred under the pall of the shadow of shame in Mexico that has normalized criminal impunity of the military and police agents of the state, a systemic impunity institutionalized under the political party system that operates as a national criminal cartel, and whose owners still hide the truth behind the Student Massacre of Tlatelolco in Mexico City in 1968.

On the evening of September 26, 2018, the students of Ayotzinapa were on their way to the anniversary mobilization in Mexico City to commemorate and denounce the systemic impunity in Mexico that has been emblematic under the name of Tlatelolco ’68, and now tragically once again with the Ayotzinapa 43.

As a share these words with all of you today, I am viewing a screen shot of the text message sent by Jorge Anibal Cruz, one of the 43 Ayotzinapa students, with the time notation of 1:16 AM on the early morning of the 27th of September 2014.  This signal has been forensically proven to have originated from within the headquarters of the Battalion 27 of the Mexican Federal Army located in Iguala, Guerrero.  Additionally, forensic investigation into the cartridges left behind by the agents of the narco-cartel after their attack one of the buses carrying the Ayotzinapa students in Iguala, Guerrero the night of the 26th, have been definitively proven to be a of a type only accessible to the Mexican federal army, with no exceptions.  The bus in question has been confirmed to be loaded with a shipment of heroin headed for Chicago, Illinois, USA.

As stated by United Nations Special Rapporteur on the situation of human rights defenders Michel Forst in his report to the UN Human Rights Council in February of 2018 regarding his 2017 mission to Mexico:

Collusion between organized crime groups and the authorities is one of the most disturbing elements contributing to attacks against human rights defenders in Mexico.”

And from the same report:

Following country visits, at least five United Nations special procedures highlighted the prevailing climate of impunity regarding grave crimes and human rights violations in Mexico.  In the last five years, five United Nations treaty bodies have urged Mexico to address persistent and widespread impunity."

Of course, none of this information is news to the members of the Permanent Forum. Yet it is with absolute disbelief that we may come to the UNPFII year after year and witness a certain group of states, who have self-named themselves as the “Group of Friends” of Indigenous Peoples nominate the state of Mexico to be their spokesperson during these proceedings. Even now, when once again in blatant disrespect for all of the Six Mandated areas of the UNPFII, the government of Mexico has yet to inform the Indigenous Peoples of Mexico regarding the “Hidden Chapter” now being negotiation in collusion with the US and Canada in terms of “modernizing” the North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA).  A “progressive” agenda in favor of the Human Rights of Indigenous Peoples in discourses at the international arena, cannot disguise nor perfume the internal oppression in Mexico, unabated for centuries and betrayed by this same Mexican government deliberately in subversion of the San Andres Peace Accords.

Mandate of the Indigenous Peoples : Territorial Integrity of Mother Earth

Madam Chair, 

Accountability: Our recommendation is for the members and participants of the UNPFII to drop the pretenses and double standards.  Let us be honest and accountable to each other as “Peoples, equal to all other peoples…” working collectively and respectfully towards world peace. Consequently, in remembrance and reference to previous interventions made by TONATIERRA at the UN Permanent Forum on Indigenous Issues, may we clarify once again that our participation in this forum of the UN system is in full exercise of the collective Mandate of Indigenous Peoples in as Original Nations of Indigenous Peoples in defense of the Territorial Integrity of Mother Earth. 

Nondiscrimination is a preemptive norm. 

We support and endorse the call for consideration and discussions on the advancement of the principles and standards of the UN Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples towards a full and comprehensive International Convention on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples, and call for the UNPFII to officially take note of this intervention which also has been submitted by the Global Indigenous Peoples Caucus, and even other member states of the UN participating in this forum here today and in previous sessions.

Thank you for your kind attention.

Tupac Enrique Acosta




United Nations
Human Rights
Office of the High Commissioner
End of mission Statement by the Special Rapporteur on the rights of indigenous peoples on her mission to Mexico



We call upon the ministers of government at all levels of Canada-US-Mexico and the public constituencies of their respective societies to address without prejudice or discrimination the above clarifications. We assert that these clarifications command rectification of the crime of colonialism and a moratorium on all NAFTA economic development projects impacting the territories of the Nations and Pueblos of Indigenous Peoples until the right of Free, Prior and Informed Consent of the Indigenous Peoples is fully recognized, respected, and protected in the spirit of the UN Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples, as follows:

“Affirming that Indigenous Peoples are equal to all other peoples,…..”