Ayotzinapa Caravan meets with Zapatistas today

Ayotzinapa Students to meet with EZLN

By: Gabriela Coutiño

Thousands of Chiapanecos participated in the meeting with students and family members of the 43 disappeared of Ayotzinapa. Photo: Moysés Zúñiga

Thousands of Chiapanecos participated in the meeting with students and family members of the 43 disappeared of Ayotzinapa. Photo: Moysés Zúñiga

The “Daniel Solís Gallardo” National Information Caravan, consisting of parents and relatives of the disappeared normalistas [1] in Iguala Guerrero, will hold a private meeting with comandantes of the Zapatista National Liberation Army (EZLN) and members of the Good Government Juntas.

Omar García, a student at the Raúl Isidro Burgos Teachers College said that they arrived in Chiapas for the purpose of meeting with all the organizations and groups that have shown solidarity and accompaniment to their demand that the 43 students kidnapped and disappeared last September 26 are located.

“One of the objectives of the caravan is the meeting with the Zapatista National Liberation Army, which has carried out two public demonstrations in solidarity with the parents and students of the Ayotzinapa Teachers College.”

In its first day in Chiapas, the Caravan maintained held a private meeting with civil society organizations and human rights defenders. They explained that sufficient evidence does not exist that permits recognizing that their compañeros were murdered and incinerated like Attorney General Jesús Murillo Karam said.

 [A detailed description of the Peace Plaza rally and meeting with civil society follows this article.]

Before thousands of people that gathered in the San Cristóbal de las Casas Peace Plaza, one of the mothers of the disappeared said that they have received testimony from people that assures that their sons were taken from one place to another for days after their disappearance.

“The people that the attorney general pointed to as the alleged material authors were detained days before our children disappeared, it could not have been them. I saw it in the newspapers three days before, they could not have left the prison,” said the mother one of the 43 disappeared.

For their part, members of civil society and humanitarian organizations issued a pronouncement wherein they expressed their solidarity and accompaniment with the Ayotzinapa movement and locating of the 43 disappeared students.

“What happened in Ayotzinapa is not an isolated act; forced disappearance is a mechanism that the Mexican State has used to silence and contain social movements.”

Manuel de Jesús Mendoza Vázquez, representing Section 7 of the National Coordinator of Education Workers (CNTE, its initials in Spanish), called for “civil insurgency” actions in support of Ayotzinapa, among them not participating in the November 20 [2] parade.

[1] “Normalistas” are students at a rural teachers college.

[2] November 20 is a holiday in Mexico celebrating the Mexican Revolution


Originally Published in Spanish by Chiapas Paralelo

Translation: Chiapas Support Committee

Saturday, November 15, 2014


Family members and students from Ayotzinapa walk with Chiapas Civil Society

 By: Angeles Mariscal/Isaín Mandujano

Caravan meets with civil society organizations inside Cideci, San Cristóbal, Chiapas

Caravan meets with civil society organizations inside Cideci, San Cristóbal, Chiapas

To the clamor of “they took them alive, we want them alive,” fathers, mothers and students of Ayotzinapa, accompanied by thousands of people, held a march in San Cristóbal, Chiapas, where they made a call to the citizenry, so that they do what the Zapatista National Liberation Army (EZLN) has done, initiate a movement to end the illegitimate governments that disappear their citizens.

During the rally they held in Peace Plaza at the Cathedral, they made a call to civilian organizations, teachers and students to not take one step back and to add their forces to construct a new social movement that: “changes everything from below.”

“As our Zapatista brothers have said, it’s time to organize a movement from below that changes all of the government’s structure and to do justice by our own hand,” Raúl Isidro Burgos Rural Teachers College students said, in the Plaza of Resistance in this colonial city.

After marching for several kilometers from the shopping center where they closed all the doors for fear of the student throng, some three thousand students marched to the city’s central plaza, headed by mothers and fathers of the 43 disappeared and by students from the Ayotzinapa Rural Teachers College, which make up the Daniel Solís Gallardo Brigade Number 2.

After traveling 17 hours since Thursday afternoon in the four buses coming from Tixtla, Guerrero, the normalistas arrived in San Cristóbal de Las Casas and met first with civil society organizations at the University of the Earth, where they also ate and some of them slept because of their fatigue.

They arrived at the Soriana shopping center a little after 6 PM, where some two thousand students from different teachers colleges were waiting for them with banners and chants. Later they marched to the front of the crowd, guarded by a wall of students.

As they passed through the city’s streets, men and women applauded the passage of the contingent. “They were taken alive, we want them alive,” “Ayotzinapa, endures, Chiapas arises” and other slogans continued until reaching the plaza a little before 8 PM, where another two thousand people were already waiting for them.

Two of the mothers that have sons among the 43 disappeared spoke first in the meeting. They said that they no longer were afraid and that they are willing to reach the ultimate consequences to find their sons, because although the government may say that they are dead, they have a “hunch” that their children are alive.

They indicated that the federal government has told them that it has 10 thousand [security] forces looking for the students, but in reality “they simulate” searching, because they just walk around in the streets of Iguala with “laziness.”

They accused that the three levels of government together with the gunmen are responsible for their children’s disappearance and that Attorney General Murillo Karam lies and has lied to them in all his investigations and statements.

“We no longer believe them. Now we are going to do justice by our own hand. We told [interior minister] Osorio Chong that if they want war they will have war,” asserted the m other of one of the disappeared. “We are no longer afraid, we no longer have anything to lose,” she added.

Omar García said that this movement would not stop

Facing a crowd that gave a chanting ovation to members of the Daniel Solís Gallardo Brigade, Omar García, an Ayotzinapa student and one of the survivors of the massacre, was the principal speaker at the meeting. The young normalista called on those present to add forces because “if we start going backwards, the government and its police bodies and soldiers, as well as paramilitaries, are going to disappear us all. Not one step back!”

He said that nothing will change if Peña Nieto resigns, if the governor or the mayors resign; what must change is the structure from below, “like our Zapatista brothers have already said, from here in Chiapas, everything must change from below, we have to change the structures, the basis of the government, to have a government with identity of its Mexican people and not a corrupt government that foments crime and impunity.”

Manuel de Jesús Mendoza Vázquez, one of the spokespersons and leader of the National Coordinator of Education Workers (CNTE) called for a “teachers insurgency” for this coming November 20. “We must all go out in the streets, tell all the teachers and students that it’s not the time for parades, that these are times to go out and, to go out and protest, to go out and demand justice and the end of impunity,” Mendoza Vázquez said.

Víctor Hugo López Rodríguez, director of the Fray Bartolomé de Las Casas Human Rights Center, was the one responsible for reading the joint comunicado of the civilian organizations that showed their support and their demand for the live appearance of the 43 disappeared.

The Daniel Solís Gallardo Brigade No. 2 will have a meeting this Saturday EZLN comandantes and with members of the Good Government Juntas. They will hold a press conference at 6:00 PM and will go to Tuxtla afterwards, where they will hold another march and meeting on Sunday, and then leave for Oaxaca.


Originally Published by Chiapas Paralelo

Translation: Chiapas Support Committee

Saturday, November 15, 2014


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