Armed groups attack the Pueblo Creyente from Simojovel, Chiapas
Desinformémonos, May 7, 2016
Around 10 am on Wednesday 4th May, between 100 and 150 people from the PRI political party and the National Campesino Confederation entered the town of Simojovel in Chiapas with much violence, firing rockets, and throwing Molotov cocktails, stones and tear gas into the streets crowded with people. They went to the Central Park where the flea market (tianguis) was set up, where people sell their amber and pozol.
"As Pueblo Creyente (people of faith) we express our outrage because this was a direct attack on the population. As on so many occasions, the material damage can be seen, but the human damage remains anonymous, and this event was clearly no exception since it is mentioned that more than 5 people were hit."
The denouncement was made through the Parish of San Antonio de Padua, in a release issued on Friday 6th May. The community’s view is that they sought to spread terror among the people of the town through these acts, since the attack caused panic, screams, closure of shops, parents running to schools for their children.
They detail that there were two episodes with similar modus operandi and violence in the previous week:
– in the early hours of 1st April, a group of armed and masked men with machetes, guns, stones and Molotov cocktails were escorted by 5 trucks of municipal police to evict a group of parents who are demanding education for their children, leaving four people injured.
– On Saturday 2nd April, around half past ten at night, Marcelo, the parish priest of that congregation was followed to a family reunion in the "Tabamex Room" in the barrio of San Sebastian; on arrival, the light was cut so that immediately afterwards, an explosive could be thrown into the room where they were celebrating 15 years. At that time, the parish facilities were raided.
The town of Simojovel was one of the communities visited by Pope Francis during his visit to Mexico this year. For a long time ago they have been denouncing, as they did before the Pontiff, the institutionalized violence afflicting the people, "expressed through the trafficking of arms, drugs and corruption on the part of the Gómez family."
The people denounce that violence is starting to reign again in Simojovel, that the life of Father Marcelo Pérez Pérez is in danger, as well as the lives of several members of the Parish Council and the Pueblo Creyente. They also denounce the reactivation of armed groups by the aforementioned Gómez family.
They demand that the Mexican government takes urgent measures which are necessary to restore peace in Simojovel. They hold Ramiro Gómez Domínguez and Juan Gómez Domínguez directly responsible for any action committed against Father Marcelo.
"The root of the violence is in that impunity and corruption have been imposed as a rule of action by the authorities and politicians."