THAT THE EARTH RETREMBLE IN HER CENTERS
To the peoples of the world
To the free means of communication
To the National and International Sixth [la Sexta Nacional e Internacional]
Brought together by the commemoration of the 20th anniversary of the Congreso Nacional Indígena (CNI, Indigenous National Congress) and by the living resistance of the peoples, nations and tribes of this country Mexico, by the languages Amuzgo, Binni-zaá, Chinanteco, Chol, Chontal from Oaxaca, Coca, Náyeri, Cuicateco, Kumiai, Lacandón, Matlazinca, Maya, Mayo, Mazahua, Mazateco, Mixe, Mixteco, Nahua, Ñahñu, Ñathô, Popoluca, Purépecha, Rarámuri, Tlapaneco, Tojolabal, Totonaco, Triqui, Tzeltal, Tsotsil, Wixárika, Yaqui, Zoque, Chontal from Tabasco and our brother Aymara, Catalán, Mam, Nasa, Quiché and Tacaná — we say firmly that our struggle is from below and to the left, that we are anti-capitalists and that the time of the peoples has arrived, to make this country vibrate with the ancestral heart beat of our mother earth.
This is how we have come together to celebrate life at the Fifth Congress of the Congreso Nacional Indígena that took place from October 9-14, 2016, at the CIDECI-UNITIERRA, Chiapas, where we once again become aware of the intensification of dispossession and repression that has not stopped in 524 years since the powerful unleashed a war whose goal is to exterminate those of us who are of the earth and as her offspring we will not allow her destruction and death to benefit capitalist ambition which knows no end but destruction itself. The resistance that we must continue building life today becomes word, learning and agreements.
In our lands we build ourselves every day in the resistances to stop the capitalist storm and offensive that does not stop but becomes every day more aggressive and has converted itself into a threat to civilization not only for the indigenous peoples but for the peoples in the cities that should also create dignified and rebellious ways so that they are not assassinated, dispossessed, poisoned, sickened, enslaved, kidnapped or disappeared. Within our community assemblies we have decided, exercised and built our destiny since time immemorial, so that keeping our forms of organization and defense is only possible with rebellion against the bad governments, their companies and their organized crime.
We denounce that:
- The Coca people, Jalisco, the businessman Guillermo Moreno Ibarra invaded 12 hectares of forest in the place known as El Pandillo in conspiracy with the agrarian institutions, using the criminalization of those who struggle, which led to 10 community members being subjected to four years of trials. The bad government is invading the island of Mezcala that is communal sacred land, while at the same time the government through state indigenous legislation un-recognizes Coca people with the objective of erasing them from history.
- The Otomí Ñhañu, Ñathö, Hui hú, and Matlatzinca peoples in the states of Mexico and Michoacán are being assaulted through the imposition of a mega-construction project building a private highway in Toluca–Naucalpan and a suburban train-line, destroying houses and sacred sites, they buy people’s minds and tamper with community assemblies using police presence, besides the double-dealing census of community members who usurp the voice of an entire people, the privatization and dispossession of water and territory in the volcano of Xinantécatl, known as the Toluca Snowcap [Nevado de Toluca], which the bad governments themselves take away the protection that they themselves gave it to give it to tourist businesses. We know that behind every one of these projects there is interest in plundering the water and life in the region. In the area of Michoacán they deny the Otomí people their identity while a group of police have entered the region to guard the mountain forests to stop indigenous people from going up and cutting wood.
- The original peoples residing in Mexico City are thrown off their lands, which they have won to earn a living working, robbing their merchandize and using police force. They are despised and repressed for wearing their traditional clothes and speaking their language, in addition to being criminalized accused of selling drugs.
- The territory of the Chontal people of Oaxaca is invaded by mining concessions that dismantle the commons, which will affect five communities, their people and natural resources.
- On the land of the Maya people on the peninsula of Campeche, Yucatán and Quintana Roo there is a plundering of lands to plant transgenic soy and African palm trees, the contamination of aquifers by agrochemicals, the building of wind farms, solar farms, the development of eco-tourism and real estate companies. Likewise they are in resistance against the high electricity rates that has brought down upon them harassment and arrest warrants. In Calakmul, Campeche five communities are dispossessed by the imposition of protected nature zones, payment for environmental services and the capturing of carbon in Candelaria, Campeche the struggle for the certainty of land tenure persists. In the three states a strong criminalization is taking place against those who defend the land and natural resources.
- The Maya people of Chiapas, Tzotzil, Tzeltal, Tojolabal, Chol and Lacandón, continue suffering the plundering of their territories with the privatization of natural resources, which has brought imprisonment and murder against those who defend the right to remain on their territory, they face discrimination and are constantly repressed when they defend themselves and organize to continue constructing their autonomy, increasing human rights violations carried out by police forces. There are internal campaigns to fragment and divide organizations, as well as the murder of compañeros that have defended their territory and natural resources in San Sebastián Bachajón. The evil governments continue trying to destroy the EZLN base of support communities and cloud the hope that emanates from them and that offers a light to the whole world.
- The Mazateco people of Oaxaca have been invaded by private property holders, who exploit the territory and culture for tourism, such as naming Huautla de Jiménez “Magical Pueblo” to legalize the plunder and commercialization of ancestral knowledge, accompanied by mining concessions and the exploration of existing caves by foreign speleologists. They impose this through an increasing harassment by drug traffickers and the militarization of the territory. The femicides and rape of women in the region are increasing always with the remiss complicity of the evil governments.
- The Nahua and Totonaca peoples of Veracruz and Puebla are faced with aerial fumigations that make our people suffer illnesses. There is the exploration and exploitation of mining and hydrocarbons through fracking and there are eight basins endangered by the new projects that are poisoning the rivers.
- The Nahua and Popoluca peoples of the south of Veracruz face the siege of organized crime and suffer the risks of being territorially destroyed and disappearance as a people as a result of the threat of mining. Wind farms and, over all, the exploitation of hydrocarbons through fracking.
- The Nahua people, who live in the states of Puebla, Tlaxcala, Veracruz, Morelos, State of México, Jalisco, Guerrero, Michoacán, San Luis Potosí and Mexico City, face a constant struggle to contain the advance of the so-called Morelos Integral Project, which encompasses gas pipelines, aqueducts and thermoelectricity. The evil governments desiring to end the resistance and communication of the peoples attempts to take away the community radio of Amiltzingo, Morelos. Likewise, the construction of the New Airport of Mexico City and complementary works threaten the lands surrounding Texcoco lake and the Basin of the Valley of Mexico, principally Atenco, Texcoco and Chimalhuacán. While the Nahua people in Michoacán face the pillage of their natural resources and minerals by hired assassins accompanied by the police or army and the militarization and paramilitarization of their teritories. Their attempt to stop this war has cost the murder, persecution, jailing and harassment of community leaders.
- The Zoque people of Oaxaca and Chiapas face the invasion of mining concessions and supposedly private property holders on their communal land in the region of Chimalapas; as well as three hydroelectric plants and the extraction of hydrocarbons through fracking. There are livestock herders and as a consequence excessive clear-cutting of forests to create pastures; they are also creating transgenic seeds. At the same time there are Zoque migrants in various states of the country reconstituting their collective organization.
- The Amuzgo people of Guerrero face the plunder of the San Pedro River’s water for use in residential areas and to supply the city of Ometepec. Their community radio has also been subject to constant persecution and harassment.
- The Rarámuri people of Chihuahua suffers the loss of agricultural lands due to the construction of highways, the Creel airport and the gas pipeline that is coming from the United States to Chihuahua, besides the existence of Japanese mining and dams and tourism.
- The Wixárika people of Jalisco, Nayarit and Durango face the destruction and privatization of their sacred sites which they depend on for their social, political and familial ties, the dispossession of their community lands in favor of bosses [caciques], using the lack of defined boundaries between states of the Republic and campaigns orchestrated by the evil governments.
- The Kumiai people of Baja California continue struggling for the reconstitution of their ancestral lands, against invasions by individuals, the privatization of their sacred sites and the invasion of their territories by gas pipelines and highways.
- The Purépecha people of Michoacán have the problem of deforestation, exercised through complicity among the bad governments with narco-military groups that pillage the forests and the wood. For them, the organization from below of communities is an obstacle to their plunder.
- In the Triqui people of Oaxaca the presence of political parties, mining companies, paramilitaries and evil governments fuel the disintegration of community relationships for the plunder of natural resources.
- The Chinanteco people of Oaxaca’s forms of community organization are destroyed by land distribution, the imposition of fees for environmental services, the capture of carbon and ecotourism. The projection of a four-lane highway crosses and divides the territory. In the Cajono and Usila rivers the bad governments are planning three dams that will affect the Chinanteco and Zapoteco peoples. There are mining concessions and oil drilling explorations.
- The Náyeri people of Nayarit face the invasion and destruction of their sacred lands in the site called Muxa Tena on the San Pedro River through the Las Cruces hydroelectric project.
- The Yaqui people of Sonora maintains a sacred struggle against the gas pipeline that crosses its territory and in defense of the waters of the Yaqui river that the bad governments decided to take to the city of Hermosillo, Sonora, going against court rulings and international resources that have shown legal and legitimate reason, using criminalization and harassment of authorities and spokespersons of the Yaqui tribe.
- The Binizzá and Ikoot peoples organize and speak out to stop the advance of wind farm, mining, hydroelectric, dams, gas pipelines projects and especially in the zone called the Special Economic Zone of the Isthmus of Tehuantepec and the infrastructure that threatens the territory and autonomy of the peoples of the isthmus of Tehuantepec, who have been labeled as the Talibans of the environment and the Talibans of indigenous rights in the words uttered by the Mexican Association of Energy [Asociación Mexicana de Energía], referring to the Asamblea Popular del Pueblo Juchiteco [Popular Assembly of the Juchiteco People].
- The Mixteco people of Oaxaca suffers the plunder of its agriculture lands, affecting their uses and customs through threats. Deaths and jailings that seek to silence the voices of those who rebel, with the bad governments promoting armed paramilitary groups, as in the case of San Juan Mixtepec, Oaxaca.
- The Mixteco, Tlapaneco and Nahua peoples of the mountain and coast of Guerrero face the imposition of mining mega-projects supported by drug-traffickers, their paramilitaries, and the bad governments, who dispute over the territories of the original peoples.
- The bad Mexican government continues lying and trying to hide its decomposition and absolute responsibility in the forced disappearance of the 43 students from the rural teachers’ school “Raúl Isidro Burgos” in Ayotzinapa, Guerrero.
- The State maintains kidnapped the compañeros Pedro Sánchez Berriozábal, Rómulo Arias Míreles, Teófilo Pérez González, Dominga González Martínez, Lorenzo Sánchez Berriozábal y Marco Antonio Pérez González from the Nahua community of San Pedro Tlanixco in the State of México, the zapoteco compañero from the Loxicha Álvaro Sebastián region, the compañeros Emilio Jiménez Gómez and Esteban Gómez Jiménez prisoners from the community of Bachajón, Chiapas, the compañeros Pablo López Álvarez and maintaining in exile Raúl Gatica García and Juan Nicolás López from the Consejo Indígena y Popular [Indigenous and Popular Council] of Oaxaca Ricardo Flores Magón. Recently a judge imposed a 33 year prison sentence on compañero Luis Fernando Sotelo for demanding the presentation with life of the 43 disappeared students of Ayotzinapa, the compañeros Samuel Ramírez Gálvez, Gonzalo Molina González and Arturo Campos Herrera from the Coordinadora Regional de Autoridades Comunitarias—PC [Regional Coordinator of Community Authorities—PC]. Likewise, hundreds of indigenous and non-indigenous prisoners are held throughout the country for defending their territories and demanding justice.
- The Mayo people’s ancestral territory is being threatened with road-building projects to link Topolobampo with the state of Texas, United States; at the same time that ambitious touristic projects are being planned for the Barranca del Cobre [Copper Canyon].
- The Dakota nation is seeing how it’s sacred lands are being invaded and destroyed by gas and oil pipelines, which is why it is maintaining a permanent encampment to protect what is theirs.
For all that we have said above, we reiterate that the care of life and dignity, that is to say resistance and rebellion from below and to the left, is our obligation to which we can only respond to in a collective way. Rebellion, well, we construct it from our small assemblies in places that conjoin onto large community, ejidal [community-owned land] assemblies, in good government councils and in agreements as peoples which unite us under one identity. In the sharing, learning and constructing of who we are as the Congreso Nacional Indígena we see and feel ourselves in our suffering, discontent and in our ancestral grounds.
To defend who we are, our walking and learning has been consolidated in collective spaces to make decisions, using national and international legal resources, acts of peaceful civil resistance, pushing aside political parties that have only generated death, corruption and buying of dignities, we have made alliances with diverse sectors of civil society, creating our own means of communication, community and self-defense police, popular assemblies and councils, the exercise and defense of traditional medicine, the exercise and defense of traditional and ecological agriculture, our own rituals and ceremonies to pay mother earth and continue walking with her and in her, the planting and defense of native seeds, forums, campaigns to promote cultural and political activities.
That is the power from below that has kept us alive and that’s why to commemorate resistance and rebellion is also to ratify our decision to continue living building the hope of a possible future over the ruins of capitalism.
Considering that the offensive against the peoples will not cease but they will attempt to continue increasing it until they have finished with the last traces of who we are as peoples from the countryside and the city, as carriers of profound discontent that also blossom in new, diverse and creative forms of resistance and rebellions in this Fifth Congreso Nacional Indígena it is why we have determined to initiate a consultation with every one of our peoples to take down from below the power that is imposed on us from above and that offers us a panorama of death, violence, plunder and destruction.
Given the above, we declare ourselves in permanent assembly and we will consult in each of our geographies, territories and directions the agreement of this Fifth CNI to name an indigenous council of government whose word will be materialized by an indigenous woman, a CNI delegate who will contend as an independent candidate in the name of the Congreso Nacional Indígena and Ejército Zapatista de Liberación Nacional in the electoral process of the year 2018 for the presidency of this country.
We ratify that our struggle is not for power, we do not look for it; but that we will call on the original peoples and civil society to organize ourselves to stop the destruction, strengthen ourselves in resistances and rebellions, which is to say in defense of the life of every person, family, collective, community or neighborhood. Of building peace and justice by rethreading ourselves from below, from where we are who are.
It is the time of rebel dignity, of building a new nation and by and for everyone, of strengthening power from below and to the anti-capitalist left, of those guilty of causing the suffering of the peoples of this multi-color Mexico.
Finally, we announce the creation of the official page of the CNI at the address www.congresonacionalindigena.org
From CIDECI-UNITIERRA, Chiapas, October 2016
For the integral reconstitution of our peoples
Never again a Mexico without us
Congreso Nacional Indígena [CNI, Indigenous National Congress]
Ejército Zapatista de Liberación Nacional [EZLN, Zapatista National Liberation Army]