Oaxaca, Mexico: Urgent Action Requested

URGENT ACTION FAX AND EMAIL FORM LETTER

On January 15, 2005, just weeks after PRI party governor Ulises Ruiz Ortiz took office, Oaxacan state police surrounded the community of Santiago Xanica during a communal work day and opened fire in broad daylight upon the villagers. Three people were shot and nine injured. The community members defended themselves with bricks and stones and managed to thwart an attempted massacre. The three wounded community members were arrested and accused of assaulting a police officer. These detainees belong to CODEDI (Committee in Defense of Indigenous Rights), an organization that is part of a state-wide alliance named COMPA, (Oaxacan Anti-neoliberal Popular Magonista Coordination).

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International Solidarity — Oaxacan Style: Cross-border Organizing at the Grassroots

by David Bacon

FRESNO, CA (8/4/02) — Indigenous people from Oaxaca have been migrating within Mexico, and to the US, for decades. Many were braceros during that program’s 22-year run from 1942 to 1964. In Mexican agricultural valleys from Sinaloa to Baja California, Oaxacan migrants are the backbone of the labor force which made corporate agriculture possible.

As a result, communities of Oaxacans have settled in a broad swath leading from their state of origin, through Veracruz, where they went first as the labor force in the sugar harvest, through northwest Mexico’s fields of tomatoes and strawberries, into the valleys of California’s San Joaquin and Oregon’s Wilamette Rivers, and to Washington state, Florida and beyond.

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