Human Rights and Civil Society

Mexican Congress pushes for broader inclusion of Sicilia’s human rights group

Sicilia accuses the government of going against its word. Credit: Javier Garcia, Milenio

08/06/11 — To help expedite approval of the National Security Act (Ley de Seguridad Nacional), congressmen from all Mexican political parties called for the human rights group the Movement for Peace with Justice and Dignity (Movimiento por la Paz con Justicia y Dignidad) to return to the debate currently taking place in Congress. Led by poet and political activist Javier Sicilia, the Movement for Peace abruptly exited discussion with political leaders earlier this week. Stressing the need to adhere to commitments made by both groups to work together, the president of the Political Coordination Board of the Senate (Junta de Coordinación Política del Senado), José González Morfin, stated there is and will be an “absolute sensitivity…to attend and listen to” the various stakeholders, including the social organization led by Sicilia, as reported in El Universal.

On Thursday, Sicilia and other representatives of the Movement for Peace did not appear at scheduled meetings with the House of Representatives, which were to set the basis for public dialogue concerning the National Security Act. Instead, Sicilia issued a statement accusing the Mexican government of going against its initial promise of including the social movement in shaping the controversial law. Sicilia then called for the government to recognize social movements as an intrinsic part in solving many of Mexico’s problems concerning human rights.

Other human rights organizations in Mexico sided with the Movement for Peace, adding that the proposed law is “harmful to individual rights” and creates an “irregular” model in civil-military relations, according to El Sol de México. In response, President of the Commission of Government of San Lázaro (Comisión de Governación de San Lázaro) Javier Corral said they have not stopped listening to Sicilia and his movement’s representatives. They cannot “be dissatisfied or excluded,” Corral stated, “because the process itself has not even begun.”


Garduño, Roberto and Enrique Méndez. “Rompe Movimiento por la Paz diálogo con Legislativo.” La Jornada. August 4, 2011.

“Congreso agiliza el dabate tras las quejas de Sicilia.” Milenio. August 6, 2011.

Jiménez, Horacio. “Congreso abre debate para ley de seguridad.” El Universal. August 6, 2011.

Lara Moreno, Carlos. “Rechazan organismos de DH la Ley de Seguridad Nacional.” El Sol de México. August 6, 2011.

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