Categories
Repression

Police Attack Oaxaca’s Alternative Guelaguetza

One Person Confirmed Dead, 62 Detained, Disappearances

July 16th, 2007 – Barucha Calamity Peller writes: Today in Oaxaca City, Oaxaca, a confrontation between the APPO (Popular Assembly of The Peoples of Oaxaca) and security forces of the State of Oaxaca as well as Federal Preventive Police has left at least one movement participant dead as a result of police violence, at least 62 detained, and an unknown number of people disappeared.

According to an APPO press statement released today, the police launched “a broad offense” against the people of Oaxaca who were celebrating their alternative and popular Guelaguetza (an annual Oaxacan cultural festival) in the Guelaguetza auditorium. The APPO announced two days previous that it would hold an alternative cultural festival in the main Guelaguetza auditorium, located in the Fortin Mountain outside of the city.

Federal Preventive Police and State police surrounded the perimeter of the Guelaguetza auditorium in order to prevent people from entering the festival. A caravan heading to the festival, tailed by 10,000 people, arrived to the auditorium, and in that moment the police attacked the crowd with tear gas, rocks, sticks, whatever they had in their hands, as well as with unidentified explosive projectiles. People retreated, and the police advanced, beating and arresting people. Three photographers were reported to have been beaten. Countless others were tossed into the back of police pick up trucks with serious injuries.

Categories
Repression

Barricades are Reconstucted in Oaxaca City as Hundreds of Thousands March on June 14th, 2007

Jun 15th, 2007 – Barucha Calamity Peller writes: At around five in the morning on Thursday, June 14th, 2007 hundreds of fireworks cracked the quiet dawn and burst in the sky above Oaxaca City, Mexico. Though the streets remained still, people began waking up and movement chants could be heard coming from the windows of houses. “If Ulises doesn’t go there will be no peace!”.

This isn’t like any other day in Oaxaca. Thursday marked the one year anniversary of the violent attempted eviction by the state police of the Section 22 teachers sit in strike in the Zocalo, and what happened that day set off a chain of events that led to a statewide uprising and a popular movement with millions of participants to remove the right-wing governor Ulises Ruiz from office and replace the entire state government with popular assemblies. An organization of thousands of civil groups was formed, called the Peoples’ Popular Assembly of Oaxaca (APPO). Physically removing local governments from office, the APPO lived autonomously in the capitol city and other communities for nearly five months until the entrance of the Preventive Federal Police in the last days of October.

In the early afternoon of June 14th, 2007, a megamarch of over 300 thousand participants began to arrive in the Zocalo of Oaxaca City. The march began at the airport nearly 8 kilometers away, and as the beginning of the march entered the Zocalo people were still leaving from the airport. Contingents from Chiapas and Michoacan and other states in Mexico participated in the march as well.

Categories
Autonomy

Students Re-occupy Radio Universidad In Oaxaca City

April 30, 2007 – Barucha Calamity Peller writes: At approximately 5pm, Radio Universidad in Oaxaca City, Mexico, was re-occupied by sympathizers of the Popular Assembly of the People of Oaxaca (APPO) and students from different departments of the Benito Juarez Autonomous University. With protest songs and political information, the transmissions were initiated to spread information about the different mobilizations planned for the first days of May. May 1st, an international labor holiday, teachers from union section 22, together with other social organizations, will march to the Zocalo in Oaxaca City to protest the continuing governance of Ulises Ruiz Ortiz, ousted by popular demand since June of last year.

The radio hosts are asking for support from students and the general public to reinforce the radio installations and take security measures in case of state repression. The radio hosts are saying that the radio and the university will be occupied for the next two days.

Categories
Repression

The Dirty War of Oaxaca

Amongst flames of resistance came death, torture, and a movement forced into clandestinity.

December 2nd, 2006 – Barucha Calamity Peller writes: Latin Americas’ “dirty war” of the 70s and 80s has reemerged in its most blatant form in the case of Oaxaca, Mexico in the final days of November.

The APPO, the Popular Assembly of The People of Oaxaca, whose struggle to oust the PRI party governor Ulises Ruiz and to replace power with that of popular assemblies began on June 14th with an attempt to violently evict a sit-in of striking teachers. Six months later they find themselves living clandestinely with federal warrants on their names and on the run from the police.

Categories
Repression

7th Mega March Takes off in Oaxaca

November 25th, 2006 – Barucha Calamity Peller writes: The Seventh Mega March of the APPO has begun with hundreds of thousands marching from Santas Maria Coyotepec, 8 kilometers outside of the capital to the central zocalo of Oaxaca City, which is occupied by the Federal Preventative Police, the PFP. 200 representatives of the directive body of the APPO are marching within a security circle created by others in the march. Upon arriving to the zocalo the marchers will create a circle of thousands of bodies around the zocalo, essentially to enclose the PFP inside. They will then spend 48 hours camped around the zocalo occupying the space around the federal forces.

Some Federal Preventative Police have been seen leaving the zocalo and are going to create roadblocks 80 kilometers and 25 kilometers outside of Oaxaca City, presumably to create an obstacle for the caravans arriving from other parts of the state to participate in the mega march.