June 22 2001, Chiapas, Mexico
To the people of Mexico.
To the peoples of the world.
To the human rights organizations.
Sisters and brothers:
Through this official notice we denounce the increase of military actions of the federal army within the communities and the independent territory of Ricardo Flores Mago'n.
Today the military actions of reinforcing, harassment and intimidation have extended again up to the indigenous communities of the ca~ada of the Rio Perla:
1. - From June 15, militaries dressed as civilians began patrolling the streets of the communities of Monte Li'bano, Taniperla, San Caralampio und Calvario, where they maintain quarters since 1995. In addition a frequent movement of military vehicles began to be registered on those rural ways and in those communities.
2. - On June 20, they initiated patrollings with more intensity throughout the entire vale, these are carried out by groups of 3 to 6 military vehicles of different sizes with machine guns on top, which transport the troops in battlepositions and with their entire equipment, knapsacks, vests, grenades, guns. On several occasions these patrols have penetrated the ways of the Ejido Taniperla, making a turn to the community and harassing the population.
3. - Patrols are also carried out from the military quarter of San Caralampio to the quarter of Calvario, harassing mainly to the community of San Jo'se. The federal soldiers stop and interrogate the people they encounter on the streets. On more than one occasion they have coordinated their actions so that two patrols are meeting in the community of San Jo'se, where this way they come to concentrate more than 30 soldiers.
4. - On June 21 an operation was launched throughout the entire vale, where this type of actions were repeated, in combination with an intense activity of helicopters, carrying out low flights over the low regions of the vale and in the Sierra Cruz de Plata. In several places the helicopters lowered themselves to less than 20 meters; this maneuver was carried out where people were working on their fields or walking on paths, and even near some communities as in Taniperla, provoking fear and confusion among the people. This kind of actions have continued throughout the present day of June 22.
5. - The tension in the zone of the Laguna Santa Clara denounced in the last days continues, like the detent and the reinforcing of the military quarter of Cintalapa.
We see that this type of actions together with the operations carried out by the federal army in our territory in the last months and days, mainly in Laguna Santa Clara and other regions of the state, is showing us that we are facing a new stage of the counterinsurgency war that began with the refusal of the Congress of Union to recognize the so called COCOPA law.
This new stage includes the reinforcing of military quarters, the exploration of new zones and the resumption of the direct harassment of the federal army against the indigenous communities, that are expected to intensify in the next days and weeks.
We, the people and the authorities of this independent municipality, oppose and reject this type of actions of repositioning, harassment and repression, which do not nothing more than to violate our rights, to terrify the civil population, to interrupt the normal work of the communities and to worsen our already poor conditions of life.
We make this information public, so that the society takes the necessary measures to prevent the continuation of this new stage of counterinsurgency war against our indigenous communities.
Independent council of the autonomous municipality Ricardo Flores Mago'n
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