Mexico: Conflict prevention, development of agreements and peace building for internally displaced persons (IDPs) in Chiapas State


The 1994 clash between the Mexican State and the Zapatista resulted in tens of thousands of people being driven off their land. Many of these remain displaced, fueling strife and perpetuating poverty in Mexico's least developed state. The aim of this Joint Programme was to reduce conflict and tension in 25 communities in Chiapas by strengthening the criminal justice system, improving security and developing a culture of peace.

An integral process involved strengthening the criminal justice system and a culture of peace and local human development in the regions Altos, Norte and Selva.

The programme had three areas of focus:

  1. Promoting public policies for strengthening the rule of law and furthering the achievement of the MDGs, using three indicators systems;
  2. Institutional development of the criminal justice and penal systems and general security, based on local analyses; and
  3. Strengthening local and state capacities for the reduction and non-violent resolution of conflicts and the construction of a culture of peace.

Main achievements included:

  • Facilitated approval of the Law on Internal Displacement in the state of Chiapas that improved access to justice for displaced populations. A strategic plan was developed for law enforcement and justice administration, and technical training was provided for organs of state and municipal police.
  • Promoted the establishment of a Documentation Centre on displaced population, positioning the displacement problem in the National Agenda.
  • Promoted a culture of peace in over 25 locations in the municipalities of intervention through art-based sport activities in schools and a Diploma program in Interculturalism and the Culture of Peace. Community spaces were created or improved to promote coexistence, rebuild the social fabric and strengthen mechanisms for dialogue and for the prevention and resolution of conflicts.
  • Improved access to housing for displaced populations: 1,546 projects to improve housing and living conditions were carried out though a partnership with two civil society organizations, which provided technical support.


Click for more detailed results from the Joint Programmes in Mexico (in Spanish).


The Joint Programme in action


Programme Dates 02 Oct 2009 - 28 Feb 2013
Net funded amount $6,500,000
Participating UN agencies UNDP, UNESCO, UNICEF, UNODC
National partners Instituto de Defensoría, Instituto de Pedagogía del Poder Judicial, Fiscalía de Asuntos Vulnerables, Fiscalía de Asuntos indígenas, instituto de capacitación de la procuraduría del Estado, Dirección Preventiva de la procuraduría del Estado, Sistema Integral para el Desarrollo Integral de la Familia del Estado de Chiapas, Secretaría de Educación Pública del Estado de Chiapas, Secretaría de Pueblos Indios, Sistema Chipaneco de Radio,. Televisión y Cinematografía, Coordinadora de Gabinetes del Gobierno del Estado, BANCHIAPAS, Congreso del Estado de Chiapas, Secretaría de Seguridad Pública, Comisión Nacional para el Desarrollo de los Pueblos Indígenas, Secretaría de Reforma Agraria, Procuraduría Agraria, Registro Nacional Agrario, Universidad Intercultural de Chiapas, Foro para el Desarrollo Sustentable, Grupo de Desplazados de la Cascada de Ocosingo, Grupo de desplazados Kichán Kichanob, Centro de Capacitación en Ecología y Salud y Defensoría del derecha a la salud, Centro de Investigaciones de Estudios Superiores en Antropología Social, Centro de Estudios Superiores de México y Centroamérica de la Universidad de Ciencias y Artes de Chiapas
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