We are extremely concerned about the new threats of displacement against the Zapatista support bases (BAZ) of San Marcos Avilés; these have been shamelessly made by certain inhabitants of the same ejido who are affiliated to the Institutional Revolutionary Party (PRI), the Party of Democratic Revolution (PRD) and the Green Party of Mexico (PVEM).
We, Mexicans migrants who make up the Movement for Justice in El Barrio in East Harlem, New York, United States, by means of this statement make clear our denouncement of these attacks which are born and nurtured with the backing of the municipal, state, and federal governments. Indeed, we hold these governments responsible for all past and future acts of violence that have occurred and may occur.
Due to these aggressive acts there is a threat that a second displacement of the community may take place, at a similar level to that of 2010, clearly showing that they are part of a historic chain of violence and repression against the BAZ of San Marcos Avilés. We know that the BAZ of San Marcos Avilés are the target of these attacks simply because they are struggling for justice, dignity, freedom, and democracy as the indigenous Zapatistas that they are. Furthermore, these threats are part of the counterinsurgency plan that the Mexican State has been implementing since January 1, 1994.
From the information documented, we know the following:
1.) On 19 February this year, eleven (11) persons including ejido authorities arrived and aggressively delivered to the BAZ of San Marcos Avilés a document demanding the payment of predial tax.
The BAZ of San Marcos Avilés, affirming their justified position, explained that they never pay any taxes to the government, as they are in resistance, and do not receive any kind of support from the government; they demanded that their right to their land be respected. In response, the authorities of the ejido said:
[...] You have to pay because it is an order from the Municipal President and an order from (the secretary of) the Treasury. If you do not pay, you will be displaced. We ourselves will arrest you and take you to the authorities. We are going to cut your light and water [...]
2.) Subsequently, this group of party supporters met on 20 February to develop the next steps in their plan to displace our sisters and brothers the BAZ of San Marcos Avilés.
3.) On February 21, the party supporters left the ejido of San Marcos Avilés to talk to the Municipal President and the Agrarian Procurator in Ocosingo seeking support and the best way to undertake the displacement of the BAZ from the community of San Marcos Avilés.
For these reasons, we propose to all the countless allied people of good heart that we join together to denounce what has happened and remain alert for what could happen against the BAZ of San Marcos Avilés.
We repeat that we hold the officers of municipal, state, and federal government responsible for these attacks.
We demand freedom, justice and respect for the process of autonomy that is being constructed by the dignified Zapatista peoples. Our struggles will make these demands reality.
We will continue to update this site with information and translations as often as we can. The site is available here:
Also, the video message from the Zapatistas of San Marcos Avilés already has over 39,000 views. We have to keep spreading the word!
You can watch this video message here:
LONG LIVE THE BAZ OF SAN MARCOS AVILÉS!
LONG LIVE THE EZLN!
We send you embraces from El Barrio, New York
Movement for Justice in El Barrio