Update 3/31 from Oaxaca (Oaxaca Indymedia)
translation by Arizona Indymedia
IT IS EASIER TO REMOVE ONE PERSON (URO) THAN TO MASSACRE A PEOPLE
October 31st, 2006 – This morning there were three marches in three different parts of the city – Viguera (the highway to Mexico City), Procuraduría General del Estado (the highway to the coast), and the Monumento a Juárez (the route to the Sierra Norte).
At 11 this morning the march left from the Monumento a Juárez, with approximately 10,000 people despite the Federal Preventive Police’s (PFP) attempts to block the entrance of many demonstrators from the Sierra Norte. The march was headed by members of the APPO and of the leadership of Sección 22 of the Teacher’s Union – with the goal of peacefully re-occupying the Zócalo.
At the intersection of Calle Independecia a group of 50 PFP with 3 tanks intercepted the march, closing off the entrance to the Zócalo.
At 1 p.m. following the chant “Oaxaca is not a barracks, military out of Oaxaca!” the mass of demonstrators sat down in front of the police and began to sing the Mexican National Anthem and the Mexican Magisterial Hymn. Afterward, Florentino López (a spokesperson for the APPO) climbed one of the tanks to address the police and try to convince them that they “are part of the people”, while the police advanced and people began chanting “Oaxaca is not Atenco!”. The APPO representative continued to say that “‘el Yunque’ (URO) sent them to murder”… “Our struggle is civil and peaceful” and that “the PFP has been politically defeated!”.
At the end of this speech, seeing that the police were not going to open the way to the Zócalo, the demonstrators decided to return to the former Santo Domingo Convent to hold a meeting – after first chanting and shouting more slogans.
At the Calle de Garcia Vigil, after encountering another gathering of police, indigenous women and men began chanting and shouting against the violent incursion of the PFP.
Examples: “Police beat us for ‘el Sancho’ (URO)’s benefit” “Do you (police) remember when the teachers used to clean your snot?” “We women will drop our aprons and pick up rifles” “PFP – your parents were farmers and you are murderers” etc…
A reporter from TV Azteca Canal 13 (Federico Anaya) was pushed out and removed from the protest by a group shouting “get out! get out!” – and he had no option other than to retreat, because along with the Televisa network they have been complicit with the massacres and repression throughout Mexico, by hiding the truth about the reasons for the protests and hiding the voices of the people.
Major barricades are still being defended in thee places: Radio Universidad, the former Santo Domingo Convent (just five blocks away from the Zócalo) and at the Canal 9 TV station (the station that was taken over by Oaxacan women)
This afternoon they’ve announced the release of three political prisoners: Professors Evangelio Mendoza Sánchez, German Mendoza Nube and the biologist Ramiro Aragón, while the release of Catarino Torres Pereda – the spokesperson for the CODECI from the Tuxtepec region – was delayed because of negotiations that have been delayed at the La Palma maximum security prison.
All public transit in Oaxaca City has remained paralyzed.
They’ve announced on Radio Universidad that in Miahuatlán there are two military trucks along with state police who are going house to house searching for APPO leaders. There was also a nighttime incursion into the University despite the University president (Rector Francisco Martínez Neri)’s public statement of support for the popular movement and affirmation of the University’s autonomy. Many people have called the radio to denounce the disappearances of family members.
The APPO is still making the preparations for and calling together the Constituent Assembly for the 10th, 11th and 12th of November, and is asking for the different sectors to name their respective delgates.
El HuArAchE (Indymedia Oaxaca)
1. Since the arrival of the PFP in Oaxaca there have been a series of solidarity protests in Chiapas, Puebla, and DF – as well as international protests at Mexican embassies, including the protest in New York where several people were arrested.
2. It has just been confirmed that at least 20 more people have been arrested, and the people continue to construct and fortify their barricades.