para leer en español: http://www.jornada.unam.mx/2011/09/14/politica/021n1pol
Paramilitaries Surround Zapatista Village and Threaten to Kill Everyone, the Junta denounces
** We will defend our land against whatever takes place, the autonomous authorities of San Patricio warn
By: Hermann Bellinghausen, Envoy
San Cristóbal de las Casas, Chiapas, September 13
The Good Government Junta (Junta) New Seed That Is Going To Produce, Zapatista Caracol of Roberto Barrios, in the state’s Northern Zone, denounced that San Patricio community, in La Dignidad autonomous municipality (Sabanilla official municipality), is surrounded by more than one hundred paramilitaries from different communities in Tila and Sabanilla, who fire shots, have blocked all the roads, have burned 18 hectáreas in the last few hours, looting milpas, and they threaten to assassinate the Zapatistas that refuse to abandon their lands.
The aggressors –from officialist groups– hold fast to the sadly famous paramilitary group Paz y Justicia, that devastated the area during the decade after the 1994 Zapatista Uprising. They come from Ostelukum, El Porvenir, Los Naranjos, Velasco Suárez and Unión Hidalgo. Rogelio Ramírez Vázquez, the Tila municipal policeman Mario Vázquez Cruz and Samuel Díaz Díaz, from Sabanilla head them.
The Junta describes the threats and aggressions as “very critical and unsupportable,” and gives a recent account: last September 7, three alleged paramilitaries (Ambrocio Díaz Gómez, Santiago Díaz Cruz and Miguel Díaz Díaz) were present at the home of an autonomous authority of San Patricio and threatened “that they are going to enter to invade and evict the community, because it is not paying the property tax, as a pretext for entering to provoke, that if they don’t deliver the lands willingly they will enter to massacre everyone; the first thing that they say they are going to do is kill three of our compañeros so that the rest seek shelter in other places without defending themselves.”
On September 10, “these paramilitaries fired several shots on the edge of the community.” That night, some 100 aggressors were positioned 200 meters from the community and they camped in the “the big house that was the finquero’s.” We’re dealing with lands recuperated by the Zapatistas fifteen years ago. At daybreak on September 11, “several shots were heard from the same position. At 10 o’clock they began to cut all the mature trees in the community pasture.” Later they cut all the milpas around where the aggressors are positioned “and took it to their houses.”
They sacrificed two pigs that “they tried out” from a Zapatista on the outskirts of San Patricio, and another one “was injured from a machete blow.” At 3:00 in the afternoon there were nine shots, “they destroyed the collective pasture’s wire fence and burned 18 hectares.” In the wee hours of the morning of September 12 “the paramilitaries fired diverse shots with high-caliber weapons.”
The paramilitary leader Samuel Díaz Díaz had threatened Manuel Cruz Guzmán, official authority San Patricio’s commission, that the Zapatistas “have to be evicted, and that now their firearms are prepared, which are of different calibers.”
These “paramilitary criminals –the Junta says– go around stealing in different communities and now they act against our compañeros, they watch them in their milpas and on the roads, day and night, and the EZLN’s support bases cannot go out to work their fields.”
Currently, “the paramilitary invaders are distributed in the woods, on the roads, so that if any of our compañeros and compañeras go out to look for their necessities they stop them to interrogate them, torture them and murder them at one time.”
The Junta maintains: “Our compañeros and compañeras are in grave danger” at the same time it warns that they will defend the land recuperated “against whatever takes place.” It places responsibility for the situation and for what may happen on the government of Juan Sabines Guerrero and the mayors of Sabanilla, Jenaro Vázquez López, and Tila, Sandra Luz Cruz Espinoza.
Originally Published in Spanish by La Jornada
Wednesday, September 14, 2011