Oaxaca: Eight dead in confrontation over land-conflict in Zimatlán

February 20, 2011

On 8 February there occurred a violent confrontation between residents of the communities that neighbor Zimatlán de Lázaro Cárdenas (municipality of Putla Villa de Guerrero) and San Sebastián Nopalera (municipality of Santa Lucía Monteverede) in which died Rafael José Cruz Sánchez, Juan Hernández Cruz, and Hermenegildo Jiménez Paz from Zimatlán and murieron Pedro Cruz Santiago, Nabor Bautista, Carlos Hernández Bautista, Eloy Bautista Caballero, and Sabás Santiago Barrios from Nopalera.  The total count of injured is 13 on both sides; two children who were with their father Rafael Cruz Sánchez during the confrontation are reportedly missing.  Following a police incursion, five individuals were detained, all of whom originate and reside near Nopalera.  A number of firearms and more than two thousand cartridges were decommissioned.

This confrontation was not the first to be had between this communities, for in July 2010 a group from Nopalera attacked Zimatlán, with the result that a man from the latter community was injured.  In response to this aggression, the Inter-American Commission for Human Rights (IACHR) granted precautionary measures to the residents of Zimatlán, demanding that the Mexican State protect the integrity and life of its inhabitants.  The general secretary of government of Oaxaca reported that units from the state police, the State Agency of Investigation, and the Army would engage in patrols in the area toward the end of preventing future confrontations.  The conflict dates back to when in 2006 the communities of Zimatlán and Nopalera jointly resolved an agrarian conflict and did not agree on how to divide the land.

For more information (in Spanish):

For more information from SIPAZ (in English):


Oaxaca: attack against the community of Zimatlán de Lázaro Cárdenas

July 26, 2010

@ mx.geocities.com/staluciamonteverde

On Wednesday 22 July, residents of Zimatlán de Lázaro Cárdenas, municipality of Putla Villa Guerrero, denounced that a group referred to as being of paramilitary origin from the neighboring town of San Sebastián Nopalera, municipality of Santa Lucía Monteverde, fired on its community, seriously wounding Jaime Jiménez Cruz, 40 years of age.  The two communities, which are located in the Mixteca region of the state of Oaxaca, have experienced conflict over agrarian issues.  Several residents of Zimatlán attempted to evacuate the zone in light of the threat of aggression, but they could not do so, given their encirclement by the aggressor group.

To facilitate the evacuation of children, women, and the elderly from the community, residents of Zimatlán requested that the Center for Human Rights and Assessment of Indigenous Peoples (CEDHAPI) organize a humanitarian caravan to leave on Saturday, 24 July.  They also requested that the state’s public security force and its General Secretary of Government guarantee the security of the displaced; furthermore, they requested that the Commissiojn for the Defense of Human Rights send a representative to the area.  For its part, the Inter-American Commission on Human Rights asked that the government of Oaxaca produce a report regarding the situation lived in Zimatlán; authorities responded by saying that the affected had been granted security, and that “criminal acts are being investigated.” It should be mentioned that in a recent communiqué CEDHAPI claimed that state authorities had not responded to the calls made by the residents of Zimatlán to detain the actions of the aggressor group.

For more information (in Spanish):

Paramilitary attack in the Mixteca of Oaxaca is denounced; one injured (La Jornada, 23 July)