Anti-Airport Activist Assassinated (State of Mexico, Mexico)

Editor's Note: This note addresses the recent assassination of Jesús Javier Ramos Arreola in the State of Mexico. Ramos Arreola was an activist organizing against the New International Airport of Mexico City and specifically against the mining operations in nearby communities seeking to fulfill the material and resource demands of the airport project. The original in Spanish was published by Regeneración Radio and can be found here.

Jesús Javier Ramos Arreola, an activist struggling against the New International Airport of Mexico City (NAICM), was assassinated Friday in his home located in Tlalmanalco, State of Mexico. The Human Rights Center, Zeferino Ladrillero, informed that the activist received a bullet to the head when he answered a knock at the door of his home.

The 59-year-old activist was working in opposition to the Tenayo Mine, a project that exploited the hill (of the same name) to extract materials like gravel and tezontle to transport them for the construction of the airport project.

The Human Rights Center, Zeferino Ladrillero, confirmed that Arreola had received constant threats, that intensified when he joined the Organizing Platform of Communities against the New Airport and made it public in a press conference.

The community of Tlalcanalco to which belonged Ramos Arreola, denounced on diverse occasions the over-exploitation of the hill, the destruction of the archeological vestiges and the disappearances of flora and fauna.

In 2007, the Mexican Geology Association produced a report, showing that the manipulation of the hill of Tenayo implied an important risk for the inhabitants, as it is land prone to landslides; they recommended to prevent more construction and modification to the original hillside and limit the transportation of heavy vehicles on the roads. However, the works were not prevented.

The Human Rights Center made an energetic call to the authorities to carry out an impartial investigation so that “those responsible receive corresponding sanctions and punishment”.