Filed under: Editorials, Indigenous, Police, Repression, Southern Mexico
Translated and Submitted to It’s Going Down
The war against Santa María Ostula and the free communities of the Costa-Sierra of Michoacán
Organized crime gains strength in the Michoacán coast with the complicity of the government
To the people of Mexico and of the world:
In the past couple weeks, the situation in the municipality of Aquila and in the Indigenous community of Santa María Ostula has reached a point of great severity. We have knowledge, voiced directly by our very own governor of Michoacán, that our community commander and director of public security in the municipality of Aquila, C. Germán Ramírez Sanchez, has at least three arrest orders against him. These same crimes were also falsely placed against our commander Cemeí Verdía. Additionally, C. Arostoteles Flores Chávez of the community police in the sister Indigenous community of Pómaro, was arrested a few weeks ago by the government of the state when he arrived in Morelia upon being called by the state government to be questioned. He is also accused of the same crimes as Cemeí Verdía. At the moment, there is a rumor that the Mexican armed marines have orders to detain the commander Germán wherever he is located and at whatever cost.
At the same time that the state government wages war against our commanders and community police, and the Mexican armed marines act like nothing is happening, in the eastern part of the municipality of Aquila the ex-caballeros templarios with Federico González El Lico, El Tena, El Tuco and Chuy Playas at the lead, are reorganized and heavily armed. All of this is evidence of the failure, everywhere in the state, of the single command police, and the complicity of the State Attorney that seeks to incarcerate our compañeros, while liberating templarios like Antíoco Ramírez and Juan Hernández who were both masterminds of past attacks against Cemeí Verdía. On the other hand, the General Attorney of the Republic has been incapable of bringing before a federal judge members of the Mexican military whom attacked our community July 19th, 2015, taking the life of the young boy Hidelberto Reyes García. The National Commission of Human Rights and the Executive Committee of Attention to Victims have been equally incapable of making or of demanding justice for our community. Instead, in their last visit to the region, they devoted themselves to defaming the Center of Human Rights Miguel Agustín Pro, a human rights organization that has supported us and given us advice before these institutions. It is thus obvious that in the country and in Michoacán there is a war being waged by the government and the cartels against the people of Mexico. In consequence, we announce that starting tomorrow, November 3rd, we will escalate our struggle and carry out diverse mobilizations with the intent to confront this war of extermination against us guided by the following demands:
1. Cancellation of the arrest orders that exist or can exist against our community commander and director of security in the municipality of Aquila, compañero Germán Ramírez Sánchez. Furthermore, those arrest orders against whatever other members of the community police and auto-defense in the Costa-Sierra of Michoacán. We also demand the immediate liberty of C. Aristoteles Flores Chávez.
2. Demilitarization of the Costa-Sierra region of Michoacán. Punishment of the command and members of the military and police that assassinated the boy Hidelberto Reyes García, wounding and beating diverse community members and destroying the property of the community of Ostula. Return of the following four articles: four communication radios, the stamp and identifications of the security counsel, a registered pistol, and four sets of keys.
3. Arrest of the bosses of the templario cartel in the region, Federico Gonzalez Medina “Lico”, and Mario Álvarez López “El Chacal”, and the true disarticulation of the cartel and of its political and economic structure.
4. Respect and the granting of guarantees for the liberty of the members and of the free functioning of the community police in the municipalities of Aquila, Coahuayana, Chinicuila and Coalcomán.
5. Return with life of the six disappeared community members and the punishment of the masterminds and actors whom carried out the assassination of the 34 community members of the community of Ostula over the last four years.
6. Respect to the territory that for time immemorial has corresponded to our community and the cancellation of the mining concessions of this territory given to people from outside our community.
Xayakalan, Michoacán, November 2, 2016
“Never More a Mexico Without Us”
Indigenous Community of Santa María Ostula