Chiapas: 5 are arrested for violence in the Venustiano Carranza municipality

June 7, 2013

Foto @ México en fotos

On Sunday 26 May, in the Teopisca municipality, the State Attorney General’s Office (PGJE) arrested five persons supposedly involved in the violence acts which occurred on 5 May in the Venustiano Carranza municipality.  Beyond the five arrested, seven more were processed for the crimes of attacks on the peace and the corporeal and patrimonial integrity of the collectivity and state.  With this, there is a total of 12 campesinos who have been arrested over the internal power dispute between OCEZ-Chiapas and the Emiliano Zapata Campesino Organization-Casa del Pueblo (OCEZ-CP).

Speaking on the arrest of the five suspects, the Federal Attorney General’s Office (PGR) reported that amidst “citizens’ protest” units of the Special Police and the Secretary for Public Security and Citizens’ Protection would displace the barricades that members of OCEZ-CP had reinstalled in different neighborhoods of Venustiano Carranza.

In other news, on 23 May, the Fray Bartolomé de las Casas Center for Human Rights (CDHFBC) published a communique mentioning that “there have been seen overflights by helicopters all day, and at this time there is the presence of military and police units, suggesting that they have reinvaded the municipality of Venustiano Carranza.  This situation has alerted the populated and created a climate of tension that could escalate conflictivity in the region, given that the presence of the military and police makes difficult modes of dialogue to resolve differences and conflicts.”

For more information (in Spanish):

Arrestan a 5 por violencia en municipio de Chiapas (El Universal, 27 de mayo de 2013)

Arrestan a otros 5 integrantes de la OCEZ CP; suman doce (La Jornada, 27 de mayo de 2013)

Boletín 22 de mayo OCEZ-Chiapas (22 de mayo de 2013)

Presencia de militares y policías en la cabecera municipal de Venustiano Carranza (CDHFBC, 23 de mayo de 2013)

For more information from SIPAZ (in English):

Chiapas: Conflict erupts in Venustiano Carranza, with two dead and several injured (17 May 2013)

Chiapas: Denunciation of residents of Candelaria El Alto, Venustiano Carranza regarding the “El Desengaño” territory (25 March 2012)

Chiapas: new public denunciation from the Candelaria El Alto community (16 January 2012)

Chiapas: confrontation in Candelaria El Alto, Venustiano Carranza (28 September 2011)

Chiapas: Conflict erupts in Venustiano Carranza, with two dead and several injured

May 17, 2013

On 5 May in Venustiano Carranza, there were seen confrontations between members of the campesino organizations Casa del Pueblo and the Emiliano Zapata Campesino Organization-Chiapas (OCEZ-Chiapas), resulting in several injured and two dead.  According to information provided by the diocese of San Cristóbal de Las Casas, the confrontation began during the early morning of Sunday 5 May, when masked persons entered into different residences firing guns and burning homes.  In their respective communiques, both groups blamed the opposing organization for having initiated the conflict.  During the course of the happenings, which engulfed nearly the entire urban zone of Venustiano Carranza with the exception of two neighborhoods, two persons died and several more were injured.  For its part, the OCEZ-Carranza Region (OCEZ-RC) distanced itself from the events.

Following the confrontations, the state government indicated that it all had to do with an agrarian conflict, and for this reason it did not consider itself competent to attempt resolution of the problem.  Regardless, on 7 May, toward the end of seeking a solution to the conflict Noé Castañón, General Secretary for Governance, Raciel López Salazar,  state Attorney General, and Jorge Luis Llaven Abarca, head of the Secretary for Public Security and Citizens’ Protection, visited the area to try to find a solution to the conflict, in accordance with media reports.  It was proposed that families belonging to OCEZ-Chiapas, which presently find themselves outside the offices of Citizens’ Protection, that they be relocated to the Berriozabal municipality, a proposal they rejected.  The same journalistic source indicated that a military check-point had been established at the entrance of a community of the municipality, with several fly-overs reported.

For more information (in Spanish):

Proceso: Enfrentamientos entre pobladores dejan tres muertos en Chiapas (05/05/2013)

Proceso: Pasividad del gobierno de Manuel Velasco causa violencia en Chiapas: ONG (06/05/2013)

Proceso: Campesinos de Chiapas temen más agresiones de supuestos paramilitares (08/05/2013)

Comunicado de la OCEZ-FNLS

Comunicado de la OCEZ-Chiapas

Comunicado de la OCEZ-RC

For more information from SIPAZ (in English):

Chiapas: Denunciation of residents of Candelaria El Alto, Venustiano Carranza regarding the “El Desengaño” territory (25 March 2012)

Chiapas: new public denunciation from the Candelaria El Alto community (16 January 2012)

Chiapas: confrontation in Candelaria El Alto, Venustiano Carranza (28 September 2011)

Chiapas: two thousand march at the close of the “Chiapan Meeting of Unity against the Extractive Mining Model” in Frontera Comalapa

December 7, 2012

Marcha en Comalapa (@ Comité Digna Ochoa)

More than 2000 persons from 20 municipalities of Chiapas as well as other states in the Republic and abroad protested in the Frontera Comalapa muncipality at the close of the “Chiapan Meeting in Unity against the Extractive Mining Model” which was held from 26 to 28 November in this municipality.  During the march, protestors demanded that the state and federal governments suspend 120 mining concessions that have been awarded since 2000, as well as the exit of these firms from the state of Chiapas.  Similarly, they demanded justice for the murder of Mariano Abarco, an anti-mining leader who was murdered on 27 November 2009 in Chicomuselo.

In the final declaration of the event, participants called for the “the strengthening in unity among the movements and organizations against the Extractive Mining Model.  Mining is a problem that affects all peoples, without regard for party affiliation, ideological views, organizational belonging, or religion.”  They also warned about “the situation of violence in the state, where there is the presence of concessions and large mining interests, as in Venustiano Carranza.  We reject acts of violence, harassment, and repression on the part of the state, municipal, judicial, and sectorial police, as well as the AFI [Federal Agency for Investigation], against the people of Venustiano Carranza.”

For more information (in English):

MARCHA y DECLARATORIA del Encuentro Chiapaneco en Unidad contra el Modelo Extractivo Minero 2012 (Otros Mundos)

Ambientalistas protestan contra actividad minera en Chiapas (El Universal, 28 de noviembre de 2012)

Exigen campesinos de Chiapas cancelar minas que operan a cielo abierto (Proceso, 29 de noviembre de 2012)

Para más información de SIPAZ:

Chiapas: Second Forum “For the Defense of Our Mother Earth and Land; Yes to Life, No to Mining Devastation” (21 September 2012)

Mexico: “Mined land, the defense of the rights of communities and of the environment” (14 December 2011)

Chiapas: Death-threats directed against the Chicomuselo parish (13 October 2010)

Chiapas: the Peace Network presents report on Chiapas’ border zone(13 October 2010)

Chiapas: Canadian delegation investigates mining abuses (2 April 2010)

Chiapas: Anti-mining activist Mariano Abarca killed (1 December 2009)

Chiapas: conflict over land in Venustiano Carranza

November 2, 2012

By means of a press-release published on 29 October, the Emiliano Zapata Campesino Organization-Carranza Region (OCEZ-RC), the Emiliano Zapata Proletarian Organization (OPEZ-MLN), the Center of Campesino and Popular Organizations (COCYP-Chiapas), and Laklamul Ixim-Northern Jungle (Our People of Maize) denounced that “approximately 25 armed men identified as residents of the Candelaria El Alto community, who call themselves members of the Other Campaign, attacked comrades and children who pertain to the OCEZ-RC with firearms while they found themselves working in the field known as El Desengaño.”

These organizations found the state-government responsible.  They indicate that “The Chiapas state-government is responsible for this aggression, given that since December 2009 it has publicly committed itself by means of minutes to resolve all our agrarian demands, including those regarding the Desengaño field, but at the end of this six-year term it has not observed its promises; to the contrary, it has refused to attend to our demands, social and agrarian.”

In a 30 October community, the organized community of Candelaria El Alto publicly reported that “on Monday 29 October 2012, our community of Candelaria El Alto decided to recover the lands that the OCEZ-RC took from us on 6 April 2011, using the group known as Nuevo San José La Grandeza, which hails from the same municipality.  This land has been ours since 1950; by right it is ours, legally and legitimately.  We have always worked it, growing our maize and beans which provides us with food to eat.  As we noted publicly in many denunciations, we have demanded that the state solve this problem of looting of our lands.”  They affirm that “the shootings came from the part of the invaders of our land.”

In an Urgent Action published on 2 November, the Fray Bartolome de las Casas Center for Human Rights noted the “imminent risk for the lives, personal integrity, and security of the campesinos from the community of Candelaria El Alto, who adhere to the Other Campaign of the Zapatista Army of National Liberation (EZLN), and the members of the Campesino Organization Emiliano Zapata-Carranza Region (OCEZ-RC) who, due to the omissions on the part of the state government of Chiapas, find themselves in conflict over land.”

For more information (in Spanish):


Denuncia de la Comunidad Organizada Candelaria El Alto Adherente a La Otra Campaña (30 de octubre de 2012)

Candelaria el Alto denuncia agresiones a las mujeres de su comunidad (1 de noviembre de 2012)

AU del CDHFBC: Por omisión del gobierno del estado de Chiapas en riesgo la vida de campesinas y campesinos en Venustiano Carranza (2 de noviembre de 2012)

For more information from SIPAZ (in English):

Chiapas: Denuncia of residents of Candelaria El Alto, Venustiano Carranza regarding the “El Desengaño” territory (25 March 2012)

Chiapas: new public denunciation from the Candelaria El Alto community (16 January 2012)

Chiapas: confrontation in Candelaria El Alto, Venustiano Carranza (28 September 2011)

Chiapas: intensification of protests in Venustiano Carranza

October 26, 2012

On 18 October, hundreds of members of the community of Bienes Comunales de la Casa del Pueblo, Venustiano Carranza municipality, blockaded the junction of the highway between this community and the cities of Comitán de Domínguez and Tuxtla Gutiérrez.  By means of this action, they demanded the expulsion of 49 communards who on 25 September took power of the offices of the organization.  They demanded that the government “act, punish, and transfer the dissidents out of the communal territory, due to the fear and uncertainty their presence generates.”  On 20 October, protest actions intensified, with the close of the offices of government and commerce, newly in demand of the dismissal of the directive committee of the House and the dismantling of a presumed paramilitary group.

For more information (in Spanish):

Campesinos bloquean carreteras de Chiapas (El Universal, 18 de octubre de 2012)

Indígenas tzotziles radicalizan protestas (El Universal, 20 de octubre de 2012)

Comunicado de la OCEZ FNLS (18 de octubre de 2012)

Comunicado de los expulsados (20 de octubre de 2012)

Chiapas: occupation and recuperation of the offices of the Casa del Pueblo

October 12, 2012

In a communiqué, the representative committee of the Casa del Pueblo organization, which has long had a historical presence in the Venustiano Carranza municipality, reported that on 25 September, communards who disagreed with the present administrative body of the organization forcibly occupied the extraordinary assembly at which there was to be discussed the presumed disappearance of 67 of the 575 cattle that belong to the Casa del Pueblo.  The commission denounces that protestors interrupted the proceedings with firearms, tubes, stones, and sticks, occupying the offices and injuring nine members of the body.  The communiqué also notes that between 20 and 30 of the invaders have been financed by Jesús Alejo Orantes Ruiz, a local deputy representing the Institutional Revolutionary Party (PRI) and the Green Ecological Party of Mexico (PVEM).

According to different media, the next day, hundreds of communards from the Casa del Puebla forcibly retook the offices of the ejidal commission.  These media indicate that 28 invaders were handed over to an agent of the Public Ministry while the state police found three others in a house, having attempted to escape.

For more information (in Spanish):

Comunicado completo sobre las agresiones a la Casa del Pueblo (Comisión representante de la Organización Casa del Pueblo, 26 de septiembre de 2012; Radio Pozol)

Toma grupo armado Casa del Pueblo en Chiapas; 9 comuneros golpeados (La Jornada, 27 de septiembre de 2012)

Recuperan casa comunal en Chiapas (La Jornada, 28 de septiembre de 2012)

Chiapas: One person ambushed and another disappeared, both members of OCEZ-FNLS. The latter appears with life, imprisoned and with signs of torture

April 19, 2012

The Latin American Federation of Associations of Relatives of the Detained and Disappeared (Fedefam), the Committee of Relatives of the Detained and Disappeared “Until we Find Them,” the Cerezo Committee Mexico, and the Network for the Defense of Human Rights (Reddh) have denounced the forced disappearance of the Tzotzil indigenous man Rogelio Alfonso López and the attempted murder of the Luis Alfonso López, also Tzotzil.  Both are militants from the Emiliano Zapata Campesino Organization (OCEZ-FNLS), and the acts occurred on 13 April 2012 in the Venustiano Carranza municipality, Chiapas.

They were returning from work when at the point of Agua Zarca, Venustiano Carranza municipality, they were fired upon by an AR-15 from a Ford truck lacking license plates.  Several men emerged from the truck to detain Rogelio Alfonso López, while the others were fired upon and followed; Luis Alfonso López was injured in the jaw and the right arm.

The attackers included approximately six persons dressed in civilian clothes; the witnesses identify Alfredo López Núñez as giving the orders.  To date the whereabouts of Rogelio Alfonso López are unknown.  For this reason, the Network for the Defense of Human Rights requests the presentation with life as well as guarantees for the physical and psychological integrity of Alfonso López, in addition to the immediate application of the necessary measures to guarantee his security as well as that of Alberto Alfonso López, as well as that of their relatives and members of OCEZ-FNLS.

On 17 April, Alfonso López was presented alive, presumably a victim of torture due to the beatings that could be observed, in the State Attorney General’s Office of Chiapas.  Until now he has been able to communicate only with his relatives.  In accordance with information from them, he is accused of the crime of homicide.

An update to the Urgent Action indicates that “It should be stressed that during two days after his disappearance, the relatives of the Tzotzil indigenous man Rogelio ALFONSO LÓPEZ asked the State Attorney General’s Office if he was under their custody or in that of one of the agencies affiliated with the Public Ministry as well as what it was that he was being accused of.  They responded by telling them that they did not know of any such person with that name or data.”

For more information (in Spanish:

Deja emboscada un desaparecido, Cuarto Poder 17 de marzo de 2012

Exigimos la presentación con vida del indígena tzotzil Rogelio Alfonso Pérez, Red todos los derechos para todos, 16 de abril de 2012

Actualización: Aparece con vida el indígena Rogelio Alfonso López, está preso y con signos de tortura, Red todos los derechos para todos, 17 de abril de 2012

For more information from SIPAZ (in English):

Chiapas: Indefinite sit-in by the FNLS in the Cathedral Plaza of San Cristóbal de Las Casas (13 April 2012)