New attacks on Support Bases of the Zapatista National Liberation Army
- Six families from the town of “El Esfuerzo”, Comandanta Ramona Autonomous Municipality.
- The Federal and State Governments are oblivious in the face of permanent violence and dispossession against autonomous territories.
By: Elio Henríquez
San Cristóbal de Las Casas, Chiapas, Mexico
Ejido members of Muculum Bachajón, headed by the president of the ejido commission, along with municipal police and Civil Protection agents, burned houses and displaced 6 Zapatista National Liberation Army support base families in the community of El Esfuerzo, belonging to the autonomous Zapatista municipality of Comandanta Ramona, the Fray Bartolomé de Las Casas Human Rights Center (Frayba) denounced. In an urgent action, it reported that it has documented “the risk to the life and personal integrity” of the 6 Zapatista families.
“The negligence and complicity of the Mexican State is evident in placing the life, security and personal integrity of the autonomous population at high risk, which constitutes serious human rights violations,” it added.
It explained that on Thursday, July 14th, at approximately 8:00 a.m., Muculum Bachajón ejido members, directed by the president of the ejido commission, together with municipal police and Civil Protection agents, arrived at the town of San José Tenojí, municipality of Chilón, where they held a meeting.”
Frayba stated that “around 1:50 p.m. they violently entered the town of El Esfuerzo, displacing 6 Zapatista civilian support base families, in addition to setting fire to their homes and property.”
Frayba stated that the 6 families left their homes to “protect their lives and moved to the community of Xixintonil.” The ejido members stood guard until Friday, July 15, and at night they fired high caliber firearms,” it said.
The human rights center said that “there is a risk of losing 20 hectares of corn and beans that have not yet been harvested. El Esfuerzo has 54 hectares recuperated in 1994 by the Zapatista National Liberation Army (EZLN).”
It said that: “the facts put at serious risk the Autonomy and self-determination of the Peoples and indicate a serious violation of the right to security, life and personal integrity of the Zapatista families. The Mexican State, in accordance with articles 1 and 2 of the American Convention on Human Rights, has the obligation to respect the rights and liberties recognized therein and to guarantee their free and full exercise to all persons, without any type of discrimination”.
Frayba demanded that: “the rights of the autonomous territories be respected in the face of what today is a permanent and deepened impunity.” At the same time it made “a call to national and international civil society to speak out in defense of the land and territory, for the security and personal integrity of the Zapatista peoples, now of the people of El Esfuerzo. We demand that the Mexican State immediately cease aggressions against the Zapatista communities.”
This article was originally published in La Jornada on Sunday, July 17th 2022, https://www.jornada.com.mx/notas/2022/07/16/estados/ejidatarios-queman-casas-y-desplazan-a-familias-zapatistas/ and summarizes the report of Frayba https://frayba.org.mx/desplazamiento-zapatistas-el-esfuerzo. English interpretation by Schools for Chiapas, Re-Published by the Chiapas Support Committee