Members of the Coordination of United People of the Ocotlán Valley, sympathizers of the Popular Assembly of the Peoples of Oaxaca (APPO), closed the entrance to the silver and gold mine located in the municipality of San José del Progeso, which is exploited by the Cuzcatlán company from Canada.
The protestors demand that the exploration work carried out in the mine be suspended for environmental reasons, with considerations for the drinking-water of at least 15 municipalities of the region of the Central Valleys above all. They called on Oaxacan governor Gabino Cué to “observe that which he promised during his campaign and to be congruent with his present rhetoric, because we have heard him say that he would respect the decisions of the people. He doesn’t respect us: we here don’t want this mine, because it pollutes our water-tables and hurts our land.”
On the front lines of the protest, Bernardo Vásquez Sánchez also demanded a resolution to the post-electoral conflict in which the mayorship, with PRI majority, has refused to accept the inclusion of an oppositional official. They denounced that on 6 March “the members of the new council met us with gun-shots from high-caliber weapons used only by the Army. Within seconds the state police appeared, ignoring the petitions of the people calling on them to arrest the aggressors. The police did nothing, instead ignoring the requests of the people.”
For more information (in Spanish):
Conato de enfrentamiento (NoticiasNet, 6 March)
Simpatizantes de APPO toman mina de oro y plata (El Universal, 10 March)
For more information from SIPAZ (in English):