Declaration of the Rights of Man, the State of law, Human Rights, State terrorism

http://www.noticias -oax.com. mx/articulos. php?id_sec= 5&id_art=52156&id_ejemplar= 1380 To Francisco toledo, the pride and bulwark of Oaxaca, celebrating the award of Honorary Doctor given to him by UABJO

VÍCTOR RAÚL MARTÍNEZ VÁSQUEZ (IISUABJO)

The Declaration of the Rights of Man

One of the assumptions that underlies the existenc eof the so-called Modern State, is the preservation of the rights of mankind called “natural, inalienable and sacred”: the rights to life, liberty, physical integrity, security, and  property.

The Declarationof the Rights of Mankind approved by the representatives of the people, in the National Assembly during the French revolution, became a paradigm for the men of the state like Benito Juarez (for which we certainly remember in these days of one more anniversary of his birth. Juarez had the document in his personal library in the original French as is shown in the catalogue of his library in the possession of UABJO).

 The Declaration of the Rights of Man establishes in its first article that all men, and we now ad women, are born and develop free and equal under the law. The law is the same for everyone.

Among the maxims of the Declaration one finds that nobody can be accused or detained except in the cases and forms established by law. All men (or women) are presumed innocnet until declared guilty.Why do some condemn the political prrisoners of t he recent movement without proof and oppose their liberation without knowing if they committed any crime?

The Declaration of the Rights of Man establishes that all those who carry out arbitrary orders, or use unnecessary force to arrest a person (as occured recently) should be severely punished under the same law.

The free communication of thoughts and opinions is one of the rights most precious to men (and women). What about the attacks on the daily newspaper Noticias?

For the fulfillment and respect for these rights  the Declaration justifies the existence of “political association” of the citizens, that is to say, of the State.

Certainly, the same document, established the right of society to demand accounts from  the administration about these public taxes. (Article 15).

The Declaration of the Rights of Man as we know has been the basis for many contemporary constitutions. It concludes by affirming that if the guarantee of these rights is not assured, nor the separation of powers is determined, the Constitution really does not exist.

The State of Law

The so-called “state of law” supposes that in some way the State upholds  the law as a fundamental condition of its existence. Since ancient times and particularly with Plato, the “government of laws” was proposed as the opposite of the “government by men”. Bobbio characterizes good government as that which is respectful of the law, that which respects the “principle of legality”, as much in its origen as in its use, in its growth. It has nothing to do with the “authoritarian government” which is personal and arbitrary.

In the liberal modern State, the so-called “state of law” supposes that the fundamental rights of man are respected and underlie the basis of social institutions; thus, that the control and division of powers is is observed in the practice of government, “that the government restrains the government” as Montesquieu would say. That each one of the powers of the state , executrive, legislative and judicial, are autonomous and therefore their actions are independent of each other.

Additionally, the “state of law”, Luis Robio tells us, supposes the principal of secure justice, that is to say that the citizens are capable of knowing and accepting the law, that they have the ability to calculate the consequences of their actions in respect to other individuals and in relation to public power, but at the same time public power, the functionaries, the authorities,  can do nothing that is not written in the laws (again the princiciple of legality), that affecting the rights of the  individual should be duly based and justified by a norm, at the same time that the affected should count on the pssibilty of defending himself and being heard, the “right to audience”, the principle of  due process of law.

Reports about Human Rights in Oaxaca

Recently, the International Civil Commission of Observation for Human Rights presented their report. In it blood-curling conclusions are ecounted, in respect to the deaths, legal breaches, psychological and health affects, communication media, harassment and threats against the defenders of the rights of humans, women, individuals and indigenous peoples.
The report recognizes the death of 23 identified persons as well as the “well-founded suspicion” of disappeared persons; arbitrary and illegal detentions; indiscriminate repression against the population; violations of the right to organize and march; a significant increment of violence and the military presence ; irregular situations in the schools such as their takeover; material damages, harassment, threats, aggressions; groups of persons in civilian clothes with high claber who carried out kidnappings, illegal detentions, searches and shootings; holding incommunicado the detained and violations of their rights carrying out physical torture (like blows, electric shock, burns, etc.) and psychological like location in illegal spaces such as places of detentiony (military bases,  secure houses), lack of  contact with a trustworthy lawyer and assistence  of translators in the cases of indigenous persons, thumiliating and degading treatment , lack of respect for due process and the principle of sure justice for the detained which has left the affected defenseless; intervention of organs without legal standing such as the “mobile bailbond”; threats to the rights of minors that have been detained with the use of extreme force and taken to adult prisons; “luke-warm and insufficient” intervention by the the CNDH and the State Commission for Human Rights; paralysis of the process without justification by ” direct orders of the State Executive”; late and insufficient medical attention; arrest of the wounded in hospitals; estrategias de “generación de miedo”; “campañas de odio”; disgregación familiar; afectación económica (perdida de empleo, estigmatizació n social y laboral, daños materiales); polarización y ruptura del tejido social; desconfianza de las instituciones; impunidad; periodistas víctimas de ataques indiscriminados; hostigamiento, amenazas, agresiones, campañas difamatorias, desprecio y acusaciones contra organizaciones de derechos humanos no gubernamentales, criminalizando sus acciones; agresiones verbales, físicas y sexuales hacia las mujeres por su condición de género ( violaciones, cortes de pelo, obligación de desnudarse, sentadillas, etc); abortos traumáticos a causa de daños físicos y sicológicos; discriminació n étnica contra detenidos y presos indígenas así como insultos y tratos vejatorios por no hablar bien el español; grupos de civiles armados y pistoleros, en algunos casos comandados por caciques y presidentes municipales que agreden, asesinan, secuestran, hostigan y amenazan de muerte a la población.

In respect to some after-effects, the report indicated that the violations of human rights had high physical, emotional and psychological impact, leaving people, gffamilies and the community severely damaged. “Effects and symptoms characteristic of post-traumatic stress syndrome and social trauma have been found. The most fequent are: reliving over and over the traumatic events, waking up abruptly in the nights, nocutranl terror, fear of certain noises and sounds, fear of being alone, psychological over reaction to internal and external stimulae, feelings of being watched and persecution mania.

Another report, that of the National Commission for Human Rights (CNDH), although it was counted as late, full of omissions, limited and feeble, ” a montage of impunity”, etc., did not fail to recognize serious facts that involved the three levels of government as using excessive force, jailing children and adolescents, assination of 20 persons among them one who died from a gas projectile launched by the PFP, uprooting of people without reason, some in raids, held incommunicado, tortured with electric shock, blows to the body, bags on their faces, etc.

What has this to do withth e defense of the rights of man, withthe so-called “State of Law”? With sure justice? With due legal process? Is that their conduct, has the State respected the “principle of legality?” Are the institutions complying in that way with their constitutional functions? I believe that in the face of the evidence, the reply is no.

The terrorism of the state

The report of the CCODH puts forth in their first conclusion that “the deeds that took place in Oaxaca are a linkage of juridical, police and military strategy, with psychological and community components whose ultimate objctive is to achieve control and intimidation of the civil population in zones where processes of citizen organization are developing, or movements of a social – not party – character.

Effectively, there was here a strategy with various components and its called “state terrorism”.

From a text by the columnist Fernando Cruz, published in Imparcial on the 22nd of january and that was not contradicted by any authority, we knew that since the first days of August of 2006, in a meeting in the hotel Fortin Plaza, it was agreed to “finish off the rebellious”. Then came the arrest of Catarno Torres on August 6, the murder of José Colmenares on August 10, the the page on the internet calling for the detention of the “leaders of the APPO” and what happened on thew 13 of August: the arrest of Germán Mendoza Nube, Erangelio Mendoza and  Ramiro Aragón, the shooting of the antennas ofChanel 9 on August 20, the shots att he encampment in radio broadcast La Ley that were followed by the death of the architect Lorenzo San Pablo on the 21st of August, etc. etc.

The barricades emerged as a mechansim for self-defense of the movement after this last assasination of Lorenzo San Pablo, and the occupation of private radio broadcast stations, then the attack on University Radio and the antennas of public radio and television, that is to say on everything and not only from the government has government publicity been used as a vehicle.

As part of the strategy of state terrorism,  the criminalizationof the popular movement was used so that they were identified as “guerrillas”, preparing conditions for a major repression. Hundreds of previous  identifications were made in the Attorney General’s office. They put out orders of arrest, which on saying the name of the charge were for the moment suspended but the involved were stalked to inhibit or impede their participation.  The “caravans of death”, which in his article Fernando Cruz located in the prison of Ixcotel where 48 prisoners were, according to his article,  taken by night to attack the encampments and barricades. They operated with complete impunity protected by the police as was documented, including by Chanel 13 the night of August 21, in which  they threatened Edgar Galicia land took his work tools. To weaken the movement they used tactics of contera-insurgency designed by kaibiles, marines, police of the  CISEN, which included: infiltrating the movement, setting afire busses, cars and buildings, provoking the PFP, etc. The strategy prepared successes like October 27 and those of November 25 in which were detained and tortured hudnreds of people of whom 56 still are in jail.

Part of the effects of all this strategy of state terrorism has been the effective violation of human rights, the principles of legality and sure justice, and the “state of law”, as the previous information has shown. And so Ulises Ruiz and his leaders can still  call themselves innocent  and respectful of “the state of law”? Who beleives that there will be punishment for the functionaries who committed these deeds if they are judge and participants? Do they think that with deceit thay are going to achieve credibility and legitimacy?

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