The UK Zapatista Solidarity Network would like to propose that we all issue a joint statement from our various places in every corner of the world. We invite everyone to sign this worldwide declaration in support of the dignified struggle of the Zapatista support bases of San Marcos Avilés and the Zapatista political prisoner Francisco Sántiz López. This declaration is being circulated in association with the “Worldwide Echo in Support of the Zapatistas: Freedom and Justice for San Marcos Avilés and Sántiz López” Campaign, called by our compañer@s from the Other Campaign New York.
The plan is for the declaration to be presented, with all the collected signatures, during the second phase of the Campaign in September 2012.
We ask you to send your signatures of support, including the name of your group, organization or collective, and your town or country, to email@example.com before 20th September, 2012. Following this date, we will ask that you join us in actively distributing the signed declaration as widely as possible, particularly to local, national and international media, and Mexican government offices, Embassies and Consulates, to demand an immediate end to the repression confronting our Zapatista compañer@s.
To watch a video message from San Marcos Avilés: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=rY-8CBt3Vkg
For more information: http://sanmarcosavilesen.wordpress.com/
WORLDWIDE ECHO FOR FREEDOM AND JUSTICE FOR SAN MARCOS AVILÉS AND FRANCISCO SÁNTIZ LÓPEZ: DECLARATION IN SUPPORT OF THE ZAPATISTAS
We view with profound concern, and demand an immediate end to, the continued acts of intimidation and aggression and the human rights abuses being committed against members of the Zapatista support base community in San Marcos Avilés, official municipality of Chilón, Chiapas, Mexico. We also call for the immediate liberation of the Zapatista political prisoner Francisco Sántiz López, who has been jailed since December 2011 in a flagrant abuse of justice.
Responding to the numerous denouncements and calls issued by the Zapatista Good Government Junta of Oventic and the community of San Marcos Avilés, we manifest in this declaration our solidarity with our brothers and sisters there, as well as with Francisco Sántiz López.
We are aware of the very serious new threats being made against the community of San Marcos Avilés by representatives of political parties in the area. Of particular concern are the open and blatant threats of displacement, physical violence, and the on-going climate of hostility promoted by these individuals. We consider such reprehensible aggression to be extremely serious in light of the events of September 2010, when vigilantes from the Green Ecological Party of Mexico (PVEM), the Institutional Revolutionary Party (PRI) and Party of the Democratic Revolution (PRD), led by Lorenzo Ruiz Gómez and Vicente Ruiz López, attacked Zapatista support bases, displacing 170 people and destroying their property and crops.
In relation to the case of Francisco Sántiz López, a Zapatista support base from the Banavil ejido of Tenejapa, who was originally detained in December 2011 under false charges of having orchestrated a conflict in Banavil, we affirm the evidence collected by the Fray Bartolomé de Las Casas Human Rights Centre and recounted by several witnesses, that he indeed was not present at the location where the events took place on 4th December 2011. His false imprisonment and the continued refusal of local authorities to examine this evidence are, in our view, further indication that the judicial system in Chiapas is wielded as tool of political repression against those who struggle for justice.
In respect to current events in San Marcos Avilés, we demand:
An immediate end to all death threats, verbal and physical harassment, and threats against the property and well-being of the Zapatista Support Base members by elements of the political parties in the San Marcos Avilés ejido
Protection for the life and safety of the Zapatista support base members of San Marcos Avilés
Respect for the Zapatista Support Base community's inalienable right to autonomy as indigenous peoples, as enshrined in the internationally recognized ILO Convention No. 169 and the UN Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples, both of which the government of Mexico has signed
In respect of the case of Zapatista support base Francisco Sántiz López, we demand his immediate and unconditional release, as well as a swift investigation and prosecution of the perpetrators of violence in Banavil, Tenejapa Municipality, Chiapas.
To our brothers and sisters suffering injustice and violence in Chiapas, we remind you that your struggle is not carried out in silence, nor is it invisible. Indeed, countless individuals, organizations, and communities from around the world remain vigilant regarding your situation and have joined an international campaign in solidarity with your struggle. For our part, from cities across the world we send you a warm embrace, to let you know that we know who you are and what you are fighting for, and to say that we will do whatever we can to support you. We will all continue to make an echo of your just demands, an echo that resonates with the collective heartbeat of the earth.
To watch a video message from the compas in San Marcos Avilés: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=rY-8CBt3Vkg
For further information please go to: http://sanmarcosavilesen.wordpress.com
Or contact: firstname.lastname@example.org
Please send your signatures of support, including the name of your group, organization or collective, and your town or country, to email@example.com before 20th September, 2012.