EZLN denounce an attack by paramilitaries on indigenous in Ocosingo
La Jornada, June 26, 2015
San Cristobal de Las Casas, Chiapas. The Zapatista Army of National Liberation (EZLN) denounced that a group of "paramilitaries" attacked indigenous Zapatista support bases from the village of El Rosario, located in the autonomous municipality of San Manuel (official municipality of Ocosingo.)
In a communique signed by Subcomandante Moisés they added that the "paramilitaries" were "invading" land "recuperated" after the armed uprising of 1994.
Moisés added to the denunciation that the Good Government Council (JBG) the Path of the Future, based in the community of La Garrucha (Ocosingo) sent last night, in which they stated that on June 24 at 8:05 pm "28 paramilitaries from the barrio Chiquinibal, belonging to the ejido Pojkol, 8 of them carrying .22 calibre firearms, arrived in El Rosario" to attack the Zapatistas.
"In El Rosario also live the 21 paramilitaries, who are supported by that group of 28 paramilitaries from Pojkol who are invading our recuperated land," said the JBG.
They explained that an hour later "a white Ram truck, without license plates arrived, with two people: an engineer and the rancher Guadalupe Flores who is living in the city of Ocosingo, and who was the owner of the land before 1994; the 28 paramilitaries from Pojkol and the 21 paramilitaries from El Rosario met together with the rancher and the engineer; after the meeting they began measuring the ground, apparently to build a temple and also they measured sites to build houses."
After this, they added, "the rancher handed over some documents to the paramilitary group, supposedly a plan of the ‘recuperated land’."
The JBG said that at 13:26 hours “they fired 10 shots from a firearm behind the house of a fellow support base compañero intimidating the population," and "at 13:27 hours the paramilitaries from Pojkol went into the house of a support base compañero but did not find anyone there because the owner had already withdrawn to avoid conflict; after 23 minutes they came to the house of another compañero."
They stated that later "they destroyed the house of a support base compañero and stole all his belongings: 12 3.5 metre laminate sheets from the roof, 2 hens, 4 eggs, 20 picks, 2 axes, 2 solar cells, 2000 pesos in cash, 2 hoes, a tape recorder, a roll of wire 100 metres long and 150 kilograms of beans".
They said that "they put all the stolen belongings in the truck of the alleged engineer and went off in the direction of Pojkol, where the 28 paramilitaries returned."
Given these facts, they stressed: "As authorities of the JBG we see very clearly that these two people, the engineer and the former owner of the ranch, are the advisors of these paramilitaries" and "we are also clear that the bad government is seeing many ways and means they can attack us."
They said that this same "paramilitary" group has carried out several actions against the Zapatista support bases, as in August last year when "they killed a stud bull, destroyed houses and our collective store, stole our belongings and sprayed with herbicides the pasture where the collective cattle of the municipality of San Manuel were being kept, they fired guns and left signs on the ground that said ‘territory of Pojkol’."
They said that these "are the same paramilitaries who arrived on 10th May last (at El Rosario) and one of them named Andrew shot at a young girl Zapatista support base."
The JBG remarked that "these groups, prepared and financed by the bad federal, state and municipal governments have been provoking us several times with their strategy of counterinsurgency, thinking we will fall into their traps and stain our hands with the blood of our indigenous brothers. This is sick in the head because they are paid and have a guilty conscience, they are soiled by the bad capitalist system."
They warned: "We say clearly that we will not stand with our arms folded when our support bases are attacked by any means or measures the bad government may use against us; we have said clearly that we will defend our land because we were born in it, we live in it and die in it, whatever the cost."
Finally, they held all three levels of the government responsible for "anything that may happen, because it is not the first time we have denounced what this group of people have done."