EZLN Denounces Government's Military Strategy
It's Trying To Take Positions in the Lacandona, and To Resolve Problem Violently
Juan Balboa, correspondent. Comitan, Chiapas August 21.
The Zapatista Army of National Liberation (EZLN) denounced that the federal government is executing a new military strategy, whose objective is to take new army positions in the Selva Lacandona and to resolve the conflict in Chiapas through violence.
Comandante Tacho stated that the Mexican Army is advancing across the zapatista communities, who are opposed to the construction of a highway between San Quintin and Amador Hernandez, in the municipality of Ocosingo, because "they do not want the presence of more troops" who harass and impact on the lives of the indigenous peoples.
"What the government is really doing is establishing new military positions in indigenous towns. The highways are used by the Army in order to increase their patrols and harassment," reaffirmed Comandante Tacho, one of the main leaders of the EZLN, during an interview with representatives from human rights organizations from the United States.
He said that the Zapatista Army of National Liberation leadership has not refused to dialogue in order to seek peace in the Mexican southeast, but he reaffirmed that it is vitally important that President Ernesto Zedillo's government carry out the first accords signed in San Andres Larrainzar, and, with the complete fulfillment, recognize the rights of the indigenous peoples of Mexico in the law.
Comandante Tacho noted that the Army is continuing to advance into areas that, until a short time ago, did not have a military presence. Such is the case, he added, of the community of Amador Hernandez, located within the region known as the Montes Azules biosphere. "Their interest is to take a position within the town."
Tacho met with the US citizens in the town of La Realidad, municipality of Las Margaritas. During the two hour talk with members of United States human rights organizations, the zapatista said that the Mexican government's strategy is militarist, and the Mexican authorities' solution is to make war against the EZLN.
"The zapatista support bases are protesting, because they no longer want any more highways, or any more armies in their towns. It's not true that we're against the building of highways, we are against their being used by the Mexican Army to continue their uncontrolled advance.
"The truth is that there is a new government strategy to take new positions in the Selva Lacandona, under the pretext of building highways," noted Tacho. He said that the 6000 soldiers who arrived a month ago in towns in Montes Azules are part of a new military strategy on the part of Ernesto Zedillo's government.
He explained to the US citizens that the students formed a civil camp in order to prevent the communities from being attacked, but at no point did they manipulate the indigenous.
Originally published in Spanish in La Jornada
Translated by irlandesa