Filed under: Indigenous, Land, Repression, Southern Mexico
One day after a helicopter circled above their territories, Indigenous Zapotec communities in the municipality of Cuatro Venados, Oaxaca, denounce armed attacks carried out in the interests of mining exploration.
To the Zapatista Army of National Liberation
To the National Indigenous Congress
To the Indigenous Governing Council
To the Free and Independent Media
As community members from El Rebollero and Rio Minas, pertaining to the municipality of Cuatro Venados, located just an hour from Oaxaca City, we are being attacked again this July 6, with military grade weapons. Around fifteen vehicles from the neighboring community of Cuilápam de Guerrero, dropped off people who are hidden in the vegetation of our communities. From there, they have fired rounds toward people in our communities who are laboring their crops and caring for their animals.
Yesterday, July 5, a red helicopter flew over the area that today, July 6, they are attacking. The aircraft afterwards descended in the area known as Loma Boluda. This helicopter, which we do not rule out belonging to the state government (AGUSTA-109 POWER, with license plate XA-HUX), is combing the area in order to know how many people live there so they can attack us afterwards. This is not a coincidence. From unofficial sources we have found out that politicians and authorities of Cuilápam de Guerrero and our municipality, San Pablo Cuatro Venados, have been meeting and are planning an attack against our community. The objective is to take control of the area to advance on three mining concessions that have been issued in our territory without our consent.
#Oaxaca: Alerta máxima en la comunidad zapoteca, El Rebollero, por descenso de helicóptero. Esta está región quieren explotar tres concesiones de plata y oro https://t.co/SqeZkmnFlL#mineria @CNI_Mexico @OtrosMundosChia @MXREMA @ColmenaOaxaca @tryno @futuroindigena @Dal_air pic.twitter.com/6zUCyQjdTo
— Avispa Midia (@Avispa_Midia) July 6, 2021
This series of attacks adds to others that we have already suffered and denounced before the corresponding authorities, exhausting all legal solutions. We hold responsible the federal government of Andrés Manuel López Obrador, as well as the state government of Alejandro Murat, and the municipal authorities of Cuilápam de Guerrero and San Pablo Cuatro Venados, for the scale of this conflict. We hold them responsible for whatever may happen.
We make it clear, as community members of this region, we adhere to international agreements, like Convention 169 of the International Labor Organization, related to Indigenous rights and culture. We adhere to our free self-determination. We will defend our territory against these invaders. We will defend our water, our forests, and our dignity.
As of 1pm, July 6, people from outside our community are hidden in the vegetation and continue shooting.
We make a call out for solidarity, and encourage people to be attentive to the situation. We will soon inaugurate our house of healing, which is part of the reconstruction of our community.
The mining concessions are:
Title 217598, issued in 2002, located in Cuatro Venados.
Title 227548, issued in 2006, located in Cuatro Venados.
Title 242664, issued in 2013, covering the municipalities of Cuatro Venados and San Miguel Peras.
Communities of El Rebollero, Los Arquitos, and Rio Minas