The Mayan Train Raises a New Leviathan in Mexico: Civil Society Organizations

David Lovatón Palacios*

Versión en español aquí.

Mexican President Andrés Manuel López Obrador recently embraced an unfounded smear campaign against civil society organizations (CSOs) and international foundations that have supported initiatives and decisions that—on legal grounds—challenge or oppose the “Mayan Train” mega-project in the Yucatán Peninsula and other states in southeastern Mexico. It seems that the president is beginning to suffer from the binary and decidedly authoritarian political syndrome seen in many Latin American rulers: either you’re with me or you’re against me.

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Indigenous self-determination and international law

Daniel Cerqueira*

Versión en español aquí.

Ver versões em português.

The impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on indigenous peoples, along with the context of violence and territorial dispossession to their detriment, forces us to think of solutions from the most varied legal and political spheres. On the occasion of the International Day of the World’s Indigenous Peoples, celebrated on August 9, this essay summarizes the way in which international law has addressed self-determination, with an emphasis on the need to strengthen its application to indigenous peoples. This is because of the imperative to preserve the existence of such peoples and their cultures, and the need to mitigate the effects of environmental crises of which the exposure to pathogens displaced from their natural habitat – such as SARS-COVID-2 –  is only one manifestation.

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