TO THE INDIGENOUS ORGANIZATIONS AND COMMUNITIES
TO THE SOCIAL ORGANIZATIONS
TO THE NATIONAL AND INTERNATIONAL HUMAN RIGHTS ORGANIZATIONS
TO THE PEOPLE OF OAXACA
The indigenous-campesino organizations that make up the Oaxacan Popular Magonist Anti-neoliberal Coordination (COMPA): CODEDI -XANICA (Committee for the Defense of the Traditions and Customs and Indigenous Rights of Santiago Xanica), CODEP (Committee for the Defense of the Rights of the People) and OIDHO (Indian Organizations for Human Rights in Oaxaca), in conjunction with CODECI (Citizens’ Defense Committee), hereby declare:
1. We consider it shameful that the state government continues to imprison our comrade Abraham Ramírez Vázquez, a Zapotec indigenous man who was the first political prisoner of Ulises Ruiz’s bad government. He remains in the San Pedro Pochutla prison six years after his arbitrary arrest and unjust imprisonment even though Gabino Cué recognized him as a political prisoner during his campaign and promised to facilitate his release after becoming state governor. Although Abraham’s case has been widely documented by international human rights organizations, there has not been a single advance, and the comrade’s fundamental rights continue to be violated.
2. We think it is outrageous that absolute impunity exists for the murders of members of the CODECI organization, most recently Catarino Torres Pereda. When agents of the URO regime killed him right before the end of the six-year regime, we publicly stated that failure to resolve the murder of this social activist was due to the complicity of the former state government. We now state that failure to resolve these murders is due to the complacence of the new state government in the face of the impunity.
3. It appears that there are orders from the federal and state governments to continue to persecute and harass the social organizations, as demonstrated by the break-ins that occurred in the CODEP offices on January 11, 2011 and the CODECI offices during the first days of March of this year, in open collaboration with the Mexican Army, the federal police, and the state police under the pretext of anonymous citizen denunciations. Now it turns out that anyone can turn in other people with a simple phone call and no evidence whatsoever. These fascist methods are unacceptable. We repudiate the fact that the Army is in the streets, searching houses at will, performing the functions of civil authorities in a supposed battle against drug trafficking. What more awaits our organizations that defend the rights of the people?
4. We demand that the current governor put an end to URO’s accumulated grievances against members of social organizations. We refuse to be held as political hostages and categorically reject the continued strategy of the criminalization of the social struggle.
5. We are aware of the confabulation that exists between the coalition government and the PRI against those of us who are truly initiating changes in our municipalities and villages. This is evidenced by the post-electoral conflicts in our regions and the complacence of the current government towards the obvious corrupt practices by the State Electoral Institute still dominated by the PRI. Such problems exist in the municipality of Santiago Xanica, where the corrupt State Electoral Institute has invalidated the election of municipal authorities according to traditions and customs. This also happened in Putla de Guerrero, where the refusal of the municipal presidency to respect the inclusion of indigenous authorities has resulted in people being illegally deprived of their freedom during the past few days, with no resolution in sight.
6. We categorically reject the speeches of those who pretend to respect indigenous peoples, yet in practice show their scorn for the struggles of our peoples. We say to them that it is not enough to place a few folkloric indigenous people on a platform. Officials must fulfill their obligation to resolve the most heartfelt demands of our peoples who are legitimately demanding a way out of the dire poverty and injustice imposed by neoliberalism and by government thieves that have led to the ruin of Oaxaca and the country as a whole.
All the rest is pure demagoguery by those who are using indigenous people and by indigenous people who let themselves be used.
7. We remind Gabino Cué that during his campaign he promised to punish URO’s criminal government for all of its human rights violations, and we continue to insist upon justice for all aggrieved members of the Oaxaca social movement.
8. We have struggled for decades for real changes in the state and have paid with the deaths, imprisonment, torture and persecution of our comrades for never being willing to renounce our principles. We will not submit to such treatment and will continue struggling for the inalienable rights of our peoples.
The hunger strike that we have begun today is part of a struggle that will gradually escalate if the state government shows no willingness to meet our demands.
We take a stand against the disappearance of the teacher Carlos René Román Salazar, a member of the Executive Committee of Section 22; such nefarious practices are totally unacceptable.
1.- IMMEDIATE, UNCONDITIONAL FREEDOM FOR ABRAHAM RAMÍREZ VÁZQUEZ AND ALL POLITICAL PRISONERS.
2.- JUSTICE FOR THE CODECI COMRADES WHO HAVE BEEN MURDERED.
¡NO MORE CRIMINALIZATION OF THE SOCIAL STRUGGLES!
¡TOTAL RESPECT FOR INDIGENOUS RIGHTS!
OAXACAN POPULAR MAGONIST ANTI-NEOLIBERAL COORDINATING BODY (COMPA):CODEDI – XANICA, CODEP, OIDHO.
CODECI (Citizens’ Defense Committee)
This post is also available in: Spanish