Army harassment of San Manuel

June 18, 1999
San Manuel Autonomous Municipality

To national and international civil society To the national and international press

We are demouncing that, on June 14, 1999, people from the San Manuel Autonomous Municipality were going to work in their fields, when, about 9 in the morning, 5 federal army vehicles filled with soldiers tried to seize them.

On the same day, the amy detained an individual along the road that goes from La Trinidad to Las Tazas, when he was riding on his horse. They made him get down, surrounded him and interrogated him, pointing their weapons at him.

The ones from the federal army and the Public Security police are always accompanied by members of the MIRA (Anti-Zapatista Indigenous Revolutionary Movement). Francisco Hernandez and Antonio Hernandez, who are always telling them which people are from the communities of the Autonomous Municipality, where they live and where they work.

Collaborating with them in Ocosingo are Manuel Mendez Ruiz from the community of La Union, and Clabiano Alfonso Ruiz, from the community of Las Tazas, who works in SAGAR in Tuxtla Gutierrez.

The judicial police have a list of ten persons' names, 5 from San Marcos and 5 from other communities, whom they are accusing of theft and other crimes.

We know they are accusing them of rustling the cattle that the Government gave the PRI's, but we know those PRI's are eating or selling the cattle.

The federal Army is harassing and bothering the people from the communities of San Marcos, Francisco Villa, Las Tazas, Trinidad and other communities that are on the edge of the highway. They are carrying out land patrols all day and all night long, and also by helicopter.

We demand the immediate withdrawal of all federal army and Public Security forces from all the communities of the San Manuel Autonomous Municipality, since they are causing problems and preventing the people from working.

We know that their presence is only for the purpose of harassment, arresting and killing people.

There is a detachment of Mixed Operational Bases in the community of La Trinidad, which the PRIs aren't even in agreement with, since they don't let the people pass, and they are only there to take care of the Vicente Perez Castellano and Domitilo Paniagua group.


Autonomous Municipality of San Manuel

Originally published in Spanish by Enlace Civil A.C.
Translated by irlandesa
Date:   Saturday, June 19, 1999 11:48:52 -0500

To the Mexico page