Chiapas: Week for Global Action, “Juan Vázquez Guzmán Lives, the Struggle of Bachajón Continues!”

580177_115880828582293_318572180_nIn a 28 May press conference in Mexico City, ejidatarios from San Sebastián Bachajón denounced that “in our community the official ejidal authorities are manipulated by the government so as to facilitate the looting of our lands,” and “they have signed documents handing over our lands to the government, without the authorization of our general assembly; instead of being punished and taken to jail, they are protected and supplied by the bad government.”  They recalled the acts which occurred on 2 February 2011, when they “entered violently to displace the comrades of our organization from the control-point that we built with much effort and for the benefit of the people; they robbed construction materials and cash, and then the next day arrested 117 of our comrades.”

The San Sebastián Bachajón ejido, Chilón municipality, resumes its legal struggle that it has maintained for over three years.  On 27 May, they sought a meeting with the Council of the Federal Judiciary (CJF) and the office of the UN High Commissioner on Human Rights to demand the return of their lands, which had been “taken arbitrarily” by state and federal authorities on 2 February 2011.  The judge “gave his consent for the installation of a single control-point at the entrance of the Agua Azul waterfalls,” recommending thus that the government administer it, though the document “did not have the signatures of ejidatarios, nor had it been previously announced,” expressed Ricardo Lagunes Gasca, juridical representative of the ejidatarios.  In this way, the ejidatarios who adhere to the Sixth Declaration of the Lacandona Jungle sent a petition to the Inter-American Commission on Human Rights (IACHR) in Washington on the looting of their lands and the repression and criminalization suffered by their organization on the part of the state-government of Chiapas.

In other news, the Movement for Justice in the Barrio, the Group in Solidarity with Chiapas from Dorset, the Committee of True Words from Calcutta, India, and the Committee of the True Word of Alisal have organized a week of global action: “Juan Vázquez Guzmán Lives, the Struggle of Bachajón Continues!” for the days 25 June to 2 July.  The organizational groups note that the initiative, “supported by the ejidatarios,” constitutes a response “to the brutal murder” of Juan Vázquez Guzmán, killed by gunfire on 24 April, former leader in San Sebastián Bachajón. The organizations stressed that “the Tseltal community continue to be attacked by the forces of capitalism and the transnational firms that will leave no corner of the world untouched.”  Here “they desire the Agua Azul waterfalls, toward the end of converting it into a touristic destination for private luxury consumption,” they claim.  “The ejidatarios, who inherited these lands and care for them, represent an obstacle,” and so have been made the object of “death-threats, aggressions, arbitrary arrests, disappearances, incarceration, torture, and attacks from governmental and paramilitary forces.”

For more information (in Spanish):

Denuncia del Ejido San Sebastían Bachajón por las injusticias y despojos realizados por el mal gobierno (Enlace Zapatista, 28 de mayo de 2013)

Reanudan ejidatarios de San Sebastián Bachajón la lucha jurídica en defensa de su territorio (La Jornada, 28 de mayo de 2013)

Noticia: Convocatoria para la Semana de Acción Mundial: “¡Juan Vázquez Guzmán Vive!” (CDHFBC, 28 de mayo de 2013)

For more information from SIPAZ (in English):

Chiapas: ejidatario adherent to the Sixth Declaration murdered by gunfire in San Sebastián Bachajón (29 April 2013)

Chiapas: Adherents to the Other Campaign in San Sebastián Bachajón denounce looting and impunity (22 April 2013)

Chiapas: Denial of motion to ejidatarios who adhere to the Sixth Declaration from San Sebastián Bachajón (7 February 2013)

Chiapas: New denunciation from San Sebastián Bachajón (10 July 2012)


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