Oaxaca: Second Day for the People, Water, Life, and Land

April 23, 2015

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In observance of the Second Day for the People, Water, Life, and Land on 10 April, there was held a Meeting of Experiences for Consultation amidst Infrastructural and Developmentalist Projects in the city of Oaxaca de Juárez.  Representatives from indigenous and campesino peoples and members and organizations of civil society hailing from the states of Oaxaca, Puebla, Chiapas, Tabasco, Jalisco, Nayarit, Colima, Veracruz, and Distrito Federal met “to discuss and analyze the exercise of our right to decide about legislative and administrative measures as well as ‘developmental’ projects which affect our lands and territories, putting at risk our ways of life.”

At this meeting, the organizations and social processes defending land and territory shared their experiences, including the use of “closed season” for the use of water in the Central Valleys of Oaxaca; the El Zapotillo dam in Jalisco; the wind-energy projects in the Tehuantepec Isthmus; the Las Cruces (Nayarit) and Paso de la Reyna (Oaxaca) dam projects and the “Independence Aqueduct” in Sonora; the hydroelectric dams in Puebla and Veracruz; and the Plan for Territorial Exploitation on the Usumacinta River in Chiapas and Tabasco. As a central question, the great difficulty of implementing consultative processes vis-a-vis megaprojects was debated, given that “the Mexican State is promoting a series of consultations that do not respect international standards, but rather lead to a climate of harassment against communal defenders who oppose these projects,” as participants expressed in a final document.  They added that the “information we receive is only partial and distorted; it does not allow us to have a clear understanding of what the impacts are of said projects.  Furthermore, the process that continues is rigged, as there is no guarantee of impartiality.  The result is a number of simulated consultations.  In this way, we denounce the interference of power-groups and armed bands that are allied to the firms within this consultative process.”

For more information (in Spanish):

Pronunciamiento del Encuentro de Experiencias de Consulta ante Proyectos de Infraestructura y Desarrollo (Educa, 10 de abril de 2015)

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National/Chiapas: CNI and General Command of the EZLN demand release of Mario Luna

September 16, 2014

Foto de archivo @ SIPAZ

On 14 September, the National Indigenous Congress (CNI) and the Revolutionary Clandestine Indigenous Committee-General Command of the EZLN publicly pronounced themselves in favor of the release of Mario Luna, a spokesperson from the Yaqui people in the state of Sonora, who was arrested on 11 September, “falsely accused of crimes that were fabricated [against him]; with this, they seek to arrest the very struggle of the Yaqui tribe to defend the waters that in 1940 were recognized as theirs by Lázaro Cárdenas following a long war, and that since 2010 owners of capital have sought to take away from them by means of the Independence aqueduct.”  The two groups denounced that said aqueduct “is said to be constructed so that the poor have water and progress, as those from above call it, but [in fact] it is so that the rich take away the water that for centuries has belonged to the Yaquis.  Instead of irrigating crops, they want to take it for the large industries in Sonora.”

For the CNI and the General Command, the developmentalist megaprojects are a threat to the lives of indigenous peoples, given that “they want to kill us with wind-energy plants, highways, mines, dams, airports, and drug-trafficking; today, above all, it hurts us that they want to kill us in Sonora with aqueducts.”  For this reason, they demanded “the immediate release of Mario Luna; we call for the cancellation of all arrest-orders against him and the fabrication of charges against members of the Yaqui tribe and, together with this, we demand the release of all our prisoners and particularly that of our Nahua brothers Juan Carlos Flores Solís and Enedina Rosas Vélez, who have been imprisoned by the bad government since April, similarly accused falsely of fabricated crimes, toward the end of halting the struggle of the Front of Peoples in Defense of Water and Land in Morelos, Puebla, and Tlaxcala against the comprehensive infrastructural project for Morelos.”

Beyond this, the Network against Repression and for Solidarity identified Sonoran Governor Guillermo Padrés and President Enrique Peña Nieto as responsible for the health and safety of Mario Luna: “We hold them responsible for any repressive act that is taken against the Yaquis.  Above all, we call on our comrades from this network, the Sixth, who feel this attack as your own to express your solidarity by protesting and pronouncing yourselves according to your means and forms in favor of the liberty of our comrade Mario Luna and against this attack on the Yaqui people.”

For more information (in Spanish):

Pronunciamiento del CNI y el EZLN por la libertad de Mario Luna, vocero de la tribu yaqui (Enlace Zapatista, 14 de septiembre de 2014)

RvsR: ¡Libertad a Mario Luna! (Enlace Zapatista, 13 de septiembre de 2014)

For more information from SIPAZ (in English):

Chiapas: EZLN and members of the CNI united against the plundering of their peoples (29 August 2014)


Chiapas/National: CNI and EZLN express solidarity with Yaquis of Sonora against the looting of water

July 21, 2013

Vicam, Sonora (archivo, @zapateando.wordpress.com)

In a communique released on 7 July, the Clandestine Indigenous Revolutionary Committee-General Command of the EZLN (CCRI-CG) and the National Indigenous Congress (CNI) saluted the “historical mobilization” of the Yaqui people in Sonora “to defend their existence and territory.”  More concretely, the organizations pronounced themselves against the “robbery of water that the bad government seeks to advance through the Independence Aqueduct.”The two demanded “the immediate cancellation of arrest-orders and the fabrication of crimes against members of the Yaqui tribe,” condemning “the criminalization of their struggle” when “the Yaqui river has historically been the transporter of the ancestral continuity of the culture and territory of the Yaqui people.”They warned finally that “those who comprise the CNI reiterate that if they touch one of us, they touch all of us, and for this reason we will respond to any attempt to repress this dignified struggle, or any other.”

For more information (in Spanish):

Se solidariza EZLN con yaquis de Sonora contra robo de agua (La Jornada, 8 de julio de 2013)

Comunicado del CCRI-CG del EZLN y el Congreso Nacional Indígena en solidaridad con la Tribu Yaqui (7 de julio de 2013)

“Los yaquis llevamos 500 años luchando. El cansancio no está cerca”(Desinformémonos, 8 de julio de 2013)