Yucatan Court Confirms Provisional Suspension of the Mayan Train
The Labor and Administrative Court of Yucatan confirmed three new provisional suspensions against the Mayan Train. This prevents the federal authorities from continuing with the works of the new project until the definitive suspension is resolved. However, the National Tourism Development Fund (FONATUR) clarified the suspension will not be permanent. “It (the Mayan Train) is not only important for economic development. It is also fundamental to protect the rights of all communities, including a healthy environment,” said the court.
The measure comes after NGOs, including the Assembly of Defenders of the Mayan Territory Múuch ‘Xíinbal, the Mayan Collective Chuun t’aan and Equipo Indignación filed on Jan. 20 three amparo lawsuits challenging the constitutionality of the Environmental Impact Assessment (MIA) approved by the Ministry of Environment and Natural Resources (SEMARNAT) in favor of FONATUR for the construction of this project. José Montiel, lawyer for the NGO Equipo Indignación, pointed out that the lawsuits were filed, taking into account fundamental aspects such as the violation of the right to information. Indigenous communities did not have access to the studies derived from the MIA, in violation of the right to participate in the resolution of the implications and consequences of the Mayan Train megaproject.
“They have the right to file as many amparos as they want,” Rogelio Jiménez Pons, Director General of FONATUR, told Forbes. “These organizations do not represent the native communities but rather obey political interests that oppose the government of Andrés Manuel López Obrador.” Jiménez Pons also remarked that the Mayan Train, which is 31 percent complete, will be finished “no matter the costs.” “This suspension only affects 10 percent of the project,” he concluded.