|From Las Abejas Civil Society
Originally published in Spanish by Las Abejas <email@example.com>
Translated by irlandesa
Las Abejas Civil Society
Sacred Land of the Martyrs of Acteal,
Municipality of Chenalho',
October 1, 2000.
To National and International Human Rights Organizations To the National and International Media
To Non-Governmental Organizations
To Public Opinion:
The members of Las Abejas Civil Society announce the following incidents:
1. The municipal PRI committee of Chenalho, through Professor Armando Vazquez Gomez, has arranged for a PRI committee to be chosen in each community in our municipality in order to recover the official party's strength.
2. These committees are forcing people to affiliate with the PRI, and they are harassing people so that they will not belong to any parties other than the PRI, so that our municipality of Chenalho will continue being governed by that party in the upcoming elections. The persons who make up the committees are deceiving and manipulating the people through the PROGRESA and PROCAMPO programs, and they are delivering benefits, saying that the PRI is the party which helps the people.
3. These programs are being manipulated by Deputy-Elect Lorenzo Nicola's Alvarez Martinez. In addition, Señor Alvarez - when he was at a meeting with the municipal agents on September 9 of this year - said that "there are no longer any displaced in Chenalho," and that he did not believe the Acteal massacre which occurred on December 22, 1997, in which 45 innocent persons from our organization died.
4. The PRI's still have weapons in order to threaten the indigenous communities. We are witnesses, because we are experiencing it. The paramilitaries are currently municipal agents and representatives of the PRI in the communities of Chenalho.
5. Because of that, the PRI does not want to lose its strength. The PRI paramilitaries have committed federal and common crimes since 1997, and it is because of them that there are more than 10,500 displaced persons in the municipality of Chenalho. The PRIs steal our belongings, they burned and damaged some of our houses. The Public Ministry already knows about this. They know that the PRIs in the municipality of Chenalho stole $6,901,011 (six million, nine hundred and one thousand and eleven pesos) which belonged to the displaced. The federal and state governments of Ernesto Zedillo and Roberto Albores have still not resolved this problem for us. They have not given us the indemnification which belong to us.
The Acteal massacre was prepared in complicity with the municipal government, and that is why we are openly declaring that they are mistaken and they are being manipulated by high-level leaders of the communities of the municipality of Chenalho.
The wealth of Chiapas is in the hands of a minority in the State. We are asking for there to be, in Chiapas and in all of Mexico, law and liberty for, above all, the humble and illiterate persons. We are also asking national and international Human Rights organizations for their help in putting an end to the manipulation, exploitation, injustices and inequalities which exist in our municipality.
We protest against Señor Lorenzo Nicolas Alvarez Martinez' lies, since our problems have not been resolved, and we continue to be displaced. We want respect for human rights and for our Constitution, by everyone and for everyone, and democracy for a people in this new millennium which is beginning.
The Voice of "Las Abejas" Civil Society
Juan Go'mez Va'zquez
Manuel Pe'rez Pe'rez
Las Abejas Civil Society
Sacred Land of the Martyrs of Acteal
Chenalho, Chiapas, Mexico.