Edinburgh Chiapas Solidarity Group
The Edinburgh Chiapas Solidarity Group is one of many groups across the world which support the Zapatistas in their struggleand is part of the 'UK Zapatista Network'. Our main purpose is to raise awareness of the Zapatista struggle and to give practical help wherever possible.
We do this by organising talks, film showings, benefit gigs, street stalls and direct actions as well as publishing articles. We import Zapatista produce such as coffee, clothing and jewellery for sale with the money going directly back to the communities.
In Spring 2004 the Edinburgh-Chiapas Solidarity Group twinned with the '16 de Febrero' Zapatista autonomous municipality. The municipality is in a poor, rural community which lacked access to basic medical care and education. We have raised funding that enabled the community to build a health clinic in their area and further help is now needed to purchase medical equipment and supplies.
We welcome new people getting involved in the group, for info on our upcoming organising meetings please email us at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Terror hangs in the air of San Marcos Avilés, a small indigenous Tzeltal-speaking community located in the highland region of the state of Chiapas, in southeastern Mexico. The women, men and children from the community have sent out an urgent call to the world for support, a call that echoes in our very heartbeat and demands our solidarity, “as if it were said in the very language of our being”.
** A federal tribunal confirms the protective order for the indigenous professor
** In October they took him to the Sinaloa prison; he has been in prison for 12 years
By: Hermann Bellinghausen
A federal tribunal confirmed the protective order (amparo)[i] in favour of the Tzotzil Alberto Patishtán Gómez, a prisoner of conscience, to be returned to a prison in Chiapas, from which he was transferred in October to Guasave, Sinaloa, with no other motive than to punish him for his defence of human rights from prison for 12 years. The sentence was released one month ago, on June 14, and the first collegiate tribunal of the twentieth circuit in Tuxtla Gutiérrez just announced it today.
According to information we received, the eviction from the Agua Azul toll booth, occupied by ejido members from San Sebastián Bachajón adherents to the Other Campaign, was done by members of the sectorial police who arrived in 12 trucks and attacked the ejido members with violence; several of them were beaten. In response, the compañeros fled into the forest. Three hours later, they are still regrouping. At this moment, about 7 of them are still missing.
We will keep informing.
Police troops in 12 trucks took back the Agua Azul toll booth, recovered this morning by adherents to the Other Campaign from San Sebastián Bachajón. Two vehicles from the ejidatarios remained in police custody.
At this moment we are awaiting information on possible people detained or disappeared.
Ejido members of the other campaign from San Sebastián Bachajón inform us that 12 police trucks are on their way to Crucero Agua Azul. Right now they are detained on the highway because of a car accident with 2 fatalities. Ejido members believe that as soon as the road clears up they’ll continue to Agua Azul. Represion is feared.
We ask all friends to spread the word and stay attentive to whatever may happen.
Ejidatarios of San Sebastián Bachajón reclaim the toll booth at Agua Azul
At this moment : The ejidatarios of San Sebastian Bachajón, adherents to the Other Campaign, have just recuperated the toll booth at Agua Azul, as part of the national and international movement for the release of the political prisoners. The taking of the booth and the blocking of the road are to demand the release of the political prisoners Alberto Patishtán, who is currently unjustly serving 12 years in prison, the compañero support base Francisco Sántiz Lopez, the three prisoners from Bachajón (Antonio Estrada Estrada, Miguel Vásquez Deara and Miguel Demeza Jimenez), as well as the other political prisoners, prisoners of conscience and those imprisoned unjustly in Chiapas. In addition, the taking [of the booth] is another chapter in the struggle for the defence of land and territory against the mega-tourism projects [planned] for the region, for the communities in resistance consider these to be projects of dispossession and death.
Information from Radio Zapatista
** Adherents of the Other Campaign place responsibility on Uciaf members for the aggressions
**They warn residents that faced with the inattention of the authorities they will take matters into their own hands
by: Hermann Bellinghausen
San Cristóbal de las Casas, Chiapas, May 10, 2012
Members of the Indigenous and Forest Campesino Union (Unión Campesina Indígena y Forestal, Uciaf, its initials in Spanish), affiliated with the Green Ecologist and Revolutionary Institucional (PRI) parties, ambushed residents of San Sebastián Bachajón ejido with firearms, leaving Javier Pérez Jiménez, 17, very badly injured; according to ejidatarios of the Other Campaign, “he is dying in the Hospital de las Culturas” in this city.
On 22 March, 14 years and 3 months after the Acteal massacre, the Las Abejas Civil Society once again published a public communiqué in which it recalled the responsibility of the Mexican government in the case of the Acteal massacre, given that “it seeks to cover up the material and intellectual authors [of the crime], as is logical since they planned and organized the killings.”
On 16 March, the Good-Government Council (JGB) of Oventic denounced the unjust incarceration of Francisco Sántiz López, EZLN support base, as well as of Lorenzo López Girón, who lacks any political affiliations. Both are from the Tenejapa official municipality and are unjustly accused of a crime that occurred in December 2011. They were arrested on 4 December 2011. Sántiz López was "falsely accused of directing a provocation in which died Pedro Méndez López, from the Institutional Revolutionary Party (PRI) in the Banavil ejido." Francisco was held for 2 hours in the municipal headquarters and later handed over to the Ministerial Police of San Cristóbal de Las Casas. They were both offered their liberty if they would pay 32,000 pesos for the murder and 40,000 for carrying arms, but they refused to pay, "because their incarceration is unjust."
The JBG denounced as "unsupportable, unacceptable, and inhumane the attitudes of the judges, ministry, and bad state and federal governments, which are so corrupt and accustomed to inventing crimes and condemning innocent peoples." The JBG considers these attacks to be attacks on the autonomy of Zapatista communities, toward the end of impeding "the exercise of our rights to autonomy and self-determination as indigenous peoples."
In a 19 March 2012 communiqué, residents of the community of Candelaria el Alto, Venustiano Carranza municipality, who are adherents to the Other Campaign denounced that on 15 March members of the Emiliano Zapata Campesino Organization-Carranza Region (OCEZ-RC) from the San José La Grandeza neighborhood began to burn the crops and trees located on their lands.
A ZAPATISTA FILM SCREENING
"CHRONICLE OF A REBELLION"
7PM THURS 16TH FEB 2012
@ ACE, 17 West Montgomery Place, Edinburgh EH7 5HA
(at junction with Brunswick Road) Tel 0131 557 6242
FREE ADMISSION - DONATIONS WELCOME
Q & A SESSION AFTER FILM... PLUS FIESTA
**BRING YOUR OWN BEER!
EDINBURGH-CHIAPAS SOLIDARITY GROUP PRESENTS A FILM NIGHT AND FIESTA CELEBRATING THE FORMATION OF 'DIECI-SEIS DE FEBRERO' (16th FEBRUARY) THE ZAPATISTA AUTONOMOUS MUNICIPALITY OF CHIAPAS, MEXICO, WITH WHICH EDINBURGH-CHIAPAS SOLIDARITY GROUP IS TWINNED.
** Adherents to the Other Campaign denounce that they are trying to make a new Cancun in Chiapas
By: Hermann Bellinghausen,
San Cristóbal de las Casas, Chiapas, January 21, 2012
A dozen Tzeltal, Tzotzil and Chol communities, adherents to the Other Campaign, declared this Friday that in Chiapas “the strategies of plunder implemented by Procede/Fanar against communal and ejidal property represent the fundamental goal of Juan Sabines and Felipe Calderón for the last six years.”
The indigenous maintained: “With the megaprojects for supposedly sustainable development, rural cities, ecotourism, Prodesis, the Development Strategy for the Southern States (EDES, its initials in Spanish), agreed on in the Chamber of Deputies for implementing the biological, tourist and eco-archaeological corridor, they want to de-populate and re-populate indigenous territories, until they create a new Cancun in Chiapas, consolidating the Mesoamerican Biological Corridor to put all the natural wealth of our lands and territories in transnational hands.”
** They close access to beer and alcohol distributers, and to Canadian mining and logging companies
** They close 18 cantinas and question behavior of the mayor, the police and the Public Ministry
By: Hermann Bellinghausen,
San Cristóbal de las Casas, Chiapas, January 13, 2012
Organized residents of Siltepec Municipality, in the Sierra Madre of Chiapas, closed off access to the municipality to beer companies and distributers of alcohol and drugs, as well as Canadian mining and logging companies that exploit their territory. They also closed 18 cantinas (bars) and seriously questioned the police, the mayor and the state’s agent from the Public Ministry (MP, its initials in Spanish), who protect the criminals. Starting this Thursday they decided to organize “as a municipal headquarters [country seat], in coordination with the ejidos, rancherías,barrios and colonias, to exercise control of our territory without the intervention of the political parties and the government.”
The Voice of El Amate denounces the grave situation of Indigenous Prisoners who are considered “Political”
** Dozens of prisoners in Cintalapa carry out a protest for better conditions in Prison 14
** On the sixth anniversary of the organization they especially emphasize the case of Professor Alberto Patishtán Gómez
By: Herman Bellinghausen
San Cristóbal de las Casas, Chiapas, January 12, 2012
English translation by the Chiapas Support Committee