Chiapas: Women of Acteal celebrate International Women’s Day


“Army out of our communities!  Chiapas is not a barracks; army out!  Army out of Chiapas!  Respect for the women of Chiapas and the world!”  On 8 March, in observance of International Women’s Day, some 500 indigenous female members of the Las Abejas Civil Society marched in the Chenalhó municipality, beginning in Polhó and ending in Acteal by way of the military camp at Majomut.  Entering with flowers to the military base, they expressed that “To us women the presence of soldiers greatly affects our communities, peoples.  We are not treated with respect; the military cuts down trees and sows marijuana on our lands and it is not good for our children.”

From the military base the march continued 3 km to Acteal to celebrate the day with a pronunciation and a mass.  By means of a communiqué the women express, “To the governments we ask respect for women.  We want to be heard because they are ever-increasingly destroying our families and communities.  Thousands of women seek out of their disappeared, while others of thousands are burying their children.  Thousands are suffering the problem of alcoholism that brings us family problems, rape, beatings, and abuse.  We no longer want the Coca Cola firm nor Sabritas on our land, nor do we want dispensing machines at schools because they create much waste, malnutrition, ill-health, and pollution of rivers and waterbasins.  This is just another form to kill our families slowly.  We want women, fathers, husbands, brothers, governments, and rich and powerful men to understand us; we need them to respect us and take us into account, because we are free to express ourselves, because we ask as women to change our mode of being and to be able to make decisions.  This we tell to the whole world, because with violence we cannot continue.  We unite our strength as women to express all our sentiments; we want others to leave us to be free, because we as women can involve ourselves in politics, decision-making, because we also know how to organize.”

For more information (in Spanish):

Denuncia: Las mujeres de la Sociedad Civil de las Abejas de Acteal dan su palabra , 8 de marzo de 2012

Conmemoran Día de la Mujer, Cuarto Poder, 9 de marzo de 2012

For more information from SIPAZ (in English):

Chiapas: Release of 7 other indigenous persons accused of participating in Acteal massacre (9 February)

Chiapas: “Day of Fasting and Prayer for Memory, Resistance, and Life,” 14 years after the Acteal massacre (6 January 2012)

Chiapas: New denunciation by Las Abejas (28 October 2011)

Chiapas: Las Abejas of Acteal distance themselves from demand against ex-president Zedillo (27 September 2011)

Chiapas: Day of Action for Justice and Truth of Las Abejas of Acteal (19 August)


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