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HRD Attack

27 May 2021

Tomás Rojo Valencia - Yaqui tribe (tribu Yaqui)

Incident date
May 27, 2021
Date accuracy
All Correct
Tomás Rojo Valencia
Yaqui tribe
Indigenous peoples
Target: Individual
Location of Incident: Mexico


Tomás Rojo Valencia, 54, disappeared on Thursday, 27 May 2021. On Thursday night, Rojo Valencia's daughter went to the Public Prosecutor's Office to report that her father went for a walk to exercise in the early hours of the day, as he did every day, in the Yaqui community of Vícam, but did not return. In 2010, Rojo Valencia, along with Mario Luna, led the so-called war for water in the state of Sonora that was unleashed when the state government announced the construction of the Independence Aqueduct to bring water from the Yaqui River basin to the capital Hermosillo, which currently supplies more than 300,000 people and which began operations in 2013. Rojo Valencia and Mario Luna protested because they considered that the overexploitation of their natural resources would impact the social, political and economic development of their communities. The main demand of the indigenous people was that while the state government extracted water from the Yaqui River to supply the two most populated cities in Sonora, Hermosillo and Ciudad Obregón, it had never guaranteed the water supply in the eight villages inhabited by the tribe. Because of their opposition to the project, which began in 2010 and ended in 2013, both indigenous people were accused of various crimes. Rojo went into hiding in his territory, while Luna was imprisoned until the end of the six-year term of Governor Guillermo Padrés (2009-2015), amid corruption scandals. His body was found almost one month after his disappearance near the Yaqui town of Vicam, Sonora.