Deplorable incidents in the community of Los Platanos

December 14, 1998.

To the people of Mexico and of the world:
To the peoples and governments of the world:
To the national and international press:

Brothers and sisters:

The Clandestine Revolutionary Indigenous Committee - General Command of the EZLN says its word concerning the deplorable incidents which occurred in the community of Los Platanos yesterday, December 13, 1998.

First. For a year now, the community of Los Platanos has been under the complete control of paramilitary groups, Chiapas state public security forces and federal soldiers. Nothing happens in that community and its surroundings without the knowledge of those paramilitaries, and no one can move about those areas without their approval.

Second. The following is evidence of this:

a). The expulsion eight months ago of dozens of indigenous zapatista sympathizers families.

b). The passage of members of national and international human rights organizations is impeded when they try to travel through the zone.

c). The previous detention of the military attache from the North American embassy and his companion, while Zedillo was touring Chiapas.

d). The visible presence of armed paramilitaries next to Chiapas state public security abd Federal Army forces.

Third. Over the last six months an internal struggle has erupted between rival bands who are disputing control over Los Platanos and fighting for the money and equipment with which the government supplies the paramilitary groups. This dispute, PRI-style, has already caused several deaths and injuries among the residents of that community.

Fourth. The policies of the public security police posted in that zone collaborate with, support and, by times, participate directly in, the attacks which one band and the other are carrying out.

Fifth. Yesterday's attack, on December 13, 1998, is the product of an internal struggle, and proof of the collaboration of public security is that a group of 11 police officers who arrived, with clear evidence of having participated in the violent event in the indigenous community of Alvaro Obregon, located some four kilometers from Los Platanos, approximately one hour after the ambush that day, asking for help in order to escape.

Sixth. Trying to hide their participation in the financing of the paramilitary groups, and masking the struggle between PRI groups for control of Los Platanos, the government is now trying to blame the EZLN for that attack. IT LIES!

Seventh. Just before the first anniversary of the Acteal massacre, the government is trying to distract public opinion and to put the victims, not the executioners, in the dock.

Eighth. The EZLN condemns the crime of December 13, 1998 in Los Platanos, it holds the federal government responsible and it calls on civil society to not allow itself to be deceived. The EZLN does not attack civilians. The government does.

Ninth. Acteal will not be forgotten, nor will the consultation for the rights of the Indian peoples and the end to the war of extermination be detained.

Tenth. We continue and we shall continue with our struggle for a peace with justice and dignity.

Democracy, Liberty and Justice.

>From the mountains of the Mexican southeast, by the Clandestine

Revolutionary Indigenous Committee
- General Command of the Zapatista Army of Naitonal Liberation.
Mexico, December of 1998,

Comandante David, Comandante Moises, Comandante Daniel.

Originally Published in Spanish by the EZLN _______________________ Translated by irlandesa

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