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Indigenous Land Defense

Call for the Global Campaign: The Isthmus is Ours

From El Istmo Es Nuestro
Translated by Scott Campbell

#ElIstmoEsNuestro
Isthmus of Tehuantepec
June 2019

The Isthmus of Tehuantepec is a region of Mexico shared by the states of Oaxaca and Veracruz. It is the narrowest part of the country between two oceans: the Pacific to the south and the Atlantic to the north (better known as the Gulf of Mexico), and a meeting point between flora and fauna from the north and south. These characteristics make the Isthmus the most biologically diverse area of the country, an invaluable richness of life concentrated on the territories of 11 different Indigenous peoples. Eight with ancestral lands (Zapotec, Mixe, Ikoots, Zoque/Chimalapa, Zoque Popoluca, Chontal, Chochoco and Nahua) and three peoples who migrated due to displacement and forced relocation (Chinanteco, Mixtec, and Tsotsil). Indigenous peoples who to this day have resolutely protected the natural wealth of our territories.

Facing the imminent threat of the Fourth Transformation government and President Andrés Manuel López Obrador (AMLO) to impose on the peoples of the Isthmus of Tehuantepec, the people of Mexico, and the nation itself, the so-called “Integral Development Plan for the Isthmus of Tehuantepec – Interoceanic Train” (popularly known since 1996 as the “Isthmus Megaproject”), and considering that:

Categories
Indigenous Land Defense Repression

The Neoliberalism of Mexico’s New Government Continues to Dispossess and Kill

Following the article is a statement from the Popular Indigenous Council of Guerrero – Emiliano Zapata (CIPOG-EZ) on the assassination of two of its members.

By Ñaní Pinto, Avispa Midia
Translated by Scott Campbell

For the indigenous peoples of Mexico, the winds of war today seem to be the same as those of previous governments. Andrés Manuel López Obrador’s (AMLO) government has been in power just four months and the imposition of development projects, dispossession, persecution, harassment, forced disappearances, and murders continue as before.

On May 4, in the southern Mexican state of Guerrero, indigenous Nahuas belonging to the Popular Indigenous Council of Guerrero – Emiliano Zapata (CIPOG-EZ), held a meeting to coordinate actions at state and federal agencies to pressure them into meeting their social and political demands that had been rejected by the three levels of government. At the end of the meeting, at approximately 6pm, an armed group in Chilapa, Guerrero, kidnapped and later murdered José Lucio Bartolo Faustino and Modesto Verales Sebastián, both members of the National Indigenous Congress (CNI).

On more than one occasion, members of CIPOG-EZ informed the Mexican president that they had been under “siege by criminal organizations tolerated by the three levels of government,” reported members of the Indigenous Governing Council (CIG). The indigenous groups are unequivocal in asserting that AMLO had information about the situation in these communities and therefore cannot say that “he did not know.”

For their part, in a joint statement, the CNI-CIG and the Zapatista Army of National Liberation (EZLN) said that the indigenous men were killed by narco-paramilitaries who receive government backing. “It is important to mention that our murdered compañeros and their communities have for years been organizing their own Community Police in order to resist the violence, extortion, and poppy cultivation imposed by two criminal groups in the area, Los Ardillos and Los Rojos. These two groups control municipal presidencies across the region and are protected by the Mexican army and the municipal and state police. At one point they even managed to get one of their leaders named president of the Guerrero State Congress,” the statement asserted.

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Education Indigenous Land Defense Repression

Samir Didn’t Die! He Multiplied!

With sorrow and rage, thousands of Mexican people are mourning the assassination of Samir Flores Soberanes and promising to carry on on his commitment to the defense of the land, water, education, grassroots communication and autonomy of the people.

On February 20th at 5 o’clock in the morning, Samir Flores was killed just outside his front door in Amilcingo, state of Morelos. “Around 5 o’clock in the morning, two carloads parked outside his house and began to call him until Samir went out; four shots were heard and two of them hit him in his head, killing our comrade,” says a statement released by the Peoples’ Front in Defense of the Land and Water in Morelos, Puebla and Tlaxcala.

People immediately began to arrive in his town for the wake that was held with much love and affection.

A message from the Assembly of the Peoples of Morelos (APPM), which Samir founded, says: “We have no more boys, girls, sons, daughters, wives,  husbands, sisters, brothers, fathers or mothers to sacrifice…We have no more tears to cry.”

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Autonomy Indigenous Land Defense

Cherán Names its Third Council of Elders to Their Communal Government

By TV Cherán

On Sunday May 27, 2018, the indigenous Purépecha municipality of Cherán, Michoacán, named its Third Council of Elders (Consejo Mayor, Consejo de Keris) to their communal government.

Cherán has been practicing a traditional form of self-government for seven years. Earlier this year, on April 15, 2018, the community celebrated the seven-year anniversary of its uprising against what they all call today “the narco government.”

Categories
Indigenous Prisoners Repression

CODEDI Demands Justice for Assassination of Abraham Hernández Gonzales

TO THE PEOPLES OF OAXACA

TO THE SOCIAL ORGANIZATIONS

TO HUMAN RIGHTS ORGANIZATIONS

TO INDEPENDENT AND COMMERCIAL NEWS MEDIA

Today Tuesday 17th of July at 11:30 AM, a group of armed men with ski masks dressed in military style uniforms broke into Abraham Hernández Gonzales’ home in Salchi, Pochutla, and they violently took the compañero from his home. They later transported him in a gray pick-up truck with license plate number RH-70-92 along with motorcycles which escorted the truck.

Immediately after Hernandez Gonzales was picked up several police agencies were notified and none of them made any effort to find the compañero, who after five hour was found dead near the same community.

Oaxaca Governor Alejandro Murat is directly responsible for this kidnapping and assassination of our compañero Abraham Hernández, who carried out the important job of local coordinator for the community of Los Ciruelos. The government’s lack of interest in solving cases like this one demonstrates its complicity with criminal organizations that operate in the region and the state. Allowing these organizations to operate freely at all hours of the day without being detained by anyone illustrates the farce that is the government operation “Safe Beach”; in reality these are the places with the greatest degree of insecurity, and even more so with the return of the PRI to Oaxaca’s state government, whom we know are connected to narcotics trafficking.