On 4 December 2014, 3 years were commemorated since the attacks in the Banavil community, Tenejapa municipality, Chiapas, as prosecuted by members of the Institutional Revolutionary Party (PRI). In a press-conference, the Zapatista-sympathizing families mentioned the attack with firearms which led to the displacement of 13 persons “who have lost everything and are prevented with death-threats from returning.” The attack caused the death of Pedro Méndez López, while six others were injured, and Alonso López Luna forcibly disappeared. Furthermore, two arbitrary arrests were carried out of Lorenzo López Girón, son of the disappeared who was injured by gunfire and then accused of assault and battery, as well as Francisco Santiz López, Zapatista support base (BAEZLN), who was actually located elsewhere during the attack. Subsequently, both were released, with Francisco’s case won thanks to the work of a special campaign involving international-solidarity actions.
The press-bulletin indicates that “due to these grave human-rights violations, we continue to demand justice and punishment of those responsible for the attacks. It is necessary to clarify the truth regarding the forcible disappearance of Mr. Alonso López Luna, and that he be returned to us with life. Furthermore, we demand compensation for the damages incurred, owing to the plundering of our possessions and lands in the community; an expeditious return to the homes for the displaced, who now live in vulnerable situations in San Cristóbal de Las Casas, lacking access to healthcare and housing, and without options for work under dignified conditions.”
Following the press-conference, representatives of the Simojovel parish celebrated a ceremony and prayer with the displaced families to express their support and alleviate their pain. This case of the displaced families from Banavil has been included within the Campaign Faces of Looting, “Our Lands, Our Rights. No to Forcible Displacement.”
For more information (in Spanish):
For more information from SIPAZ (in English):
Chiapas: Those displaced from Banavil continue demanding justice (16 September 2014)
Chiapas: Public denunciation from those displaced from Banavil (16 September 2013)