Indigenous Peoples and Human Rights

August 16, 2021

Yaqui Bacum Pueblo: Kidnapped Men Remain Missing

Photo: Facebook / Carmen García de Aldama)

Yaqui in Bacum Pueblo, in the orginal homelands in Sonora, south of the Arizona border, went for a cow for a traditional feast one month ago. They were kidnapped and remain disappeared after being overtaken by men on motorcycles with long guns. During an initial standoff with the kidnappers, a minor and two women were released. Later, an adult and minor, who were badly injured, the victims of violence while being kidnapped, were released, Infobae reports. Yoeme (Yaqui) families said before the men were kidnapped, the Mexican Army invaded their Bacum community and planted drugs. They point to the mining companies, who are creating fear, following the discovery of lithium in Sonora, and the long battle over a gas pipeline. This comes after the assassinations of Tomas Rojo in nearby Vicam Pueblo, and other Yaqui water and land defenders. Years of a courageous highway blockade in Vicam Pueblo opposed an aqueduct for the City of Hermosillo, which continues to steal Yaqui River water. Meanwhile, little support, or news coverage, is coming from the United States. -- Censored News

No answers: one month after the disappearance of 10 people in Yaqui territory

This August 15, the National Search Commission will join the families of the victims and traditional authorities in the missions to find the 10 men still missing.

By Infoebae
En Espanol
August 15, 2021

They left for cows for the traditional festivals of their town, but they did not return (Photo: Facebook / Michelle Rivera)

The Yaqui people, located in Sonora, have been one of the most affected historically. Their activism to protect natural resources, as well as the violence that has arisen by drug trafficking groups and the lack of participation by the authorities, place these people in a vulnerable situation.

To such a degree has come the forgetfulness of this community, that this August 14 marked a month since the disappearance of 10 members of this nation, who simply left for cattle for the festivities that take place in the region, but never returned.

It was on July 14 when 15 people, seven Yaquis and eight from outside the community (but who carry out buying and selling activities) left the Yaqui Loma de Bácum community, in southern Sonora, heading to the ranch known as Agua Caliente to bring cows to the traditional festival of Bataconsica.

Since then, no one has heard from them. According to a letter sent by the Yaqui people to the president, they detailed that they were last seen at the ranch known as El Coyote, where they were subdued by people on motorcycles carrying long weapons.

The Loma de Bácum authorities left for the mountains on the morning of July 15. In four vans, accompanied by the traditional authority and some volunteers, they only found the luggage of three of them, a rope and a burned cow, reported the Indigenous Government Council.

However, when state authorities arrived to increase the search, there was a confrontation with the criminal group that allegedly had kidnapped the 15 people. There were no detainees.

After 24 hours, a minor and two women were released without major problem. Later, on July 17, another minor and an adult were also released, but they had signs of violence and injuries that took 15 days to heal.

On July 22, the Yaqui people urgently requested the intervention of the Geneva Committee on Forced Disappearance to assist them in their work. However, to this day, the whereabouts of the 10 missing persons are unknown.

It is about Fabián Valencia Romero , 27 years old; Martín Hurtado Flores , 53 years old; Fabián Sombra Miranda , 34 years old; Eladio Molina Zavala , 44 years old; Leocadio Galaviz Cruz , 38 years old; Juan Justino Galaiz Cruz, 28 years old; Braulio Pérez Sol , 40 years old; Artemio Arballo Canizalez , 60 years old; Gustavo Acosta Hurtado , 49 years old; and Benjamín Portela Peralta , 65 years old.

All of them, the letter from the Yaqui people denounced, "are used as human shields to protect the drugs that are smuggled through our territory."

On July 12, the Yaqui people issued a maximum alert for the illegal interference of the Army (Photo: Facebook / Fabricio Cajeme)

An event that marked the precedent for this still unsolved tragedy occurred several days earlier, on July 12, when a " maximum alert " was implemented in the Yaqui territory "due to intimidating acts by Mexican Army patrols that illegally and without the corresponding authorization has been entering the interior of the sacred Yaqui territory in the jurisdiction of the Traditional Authority of the Yaqui People of Loma de Bácum," a Facebook account identified as Fabricio Cajeme was reported .

On July 9, some soldiers located 487.2 kilograms of apparent methamphetamine , valued at 141 million 424,416 pesos, as a result of intelligence activities carried out in the town of El Papalote de Abajo.

“ A confrontation arose between the indigenous military authority and the invaders of the Yaqui Nation, because the latter refused to follow the legal protocols that correspond to the indigenous government to the federal government in order to coordinately resolve any issue that has to do with the ethnic group in the sacred Yaqui territory, ”the warning message continued.

After almost a month without the support of the authorities, on August 11, the National Search Commission (CNB) met with relatives of the victims and, after a dialogue, they reported that this Sunday, August 15, they will join the missions to find the 10 men .

Thus, exactly one month after this tragedy, it is expected that with this urgent call for justice, the location of the members of the Yaqui people alive will be achieved as soon as possible, as well as the arrest of those likely responsible for their illegal deprivation of freedom.

No comments: