Brothers and sisters:
By this means we want to inform you of the consultation carried out among the members of the EZLN regarding the government's proposal "for an integrated, progressive, reciprocal, proportional and verifiable program to reduce tensions between the EZLN and the federal government" which was taken to the parties with the signing of the agreement for harmony and pacification with justice and dignity in Chiapas, made by the Zapatista delegates on May 14, 1995 in San Andres Sacamch'en de los Pobres, Chiapas.
First.- That the entire Clandestine Revolutionary Indigenous Committee--General Command of the EZLN was consulted, as well as the clandestine committees of the different ethnicities, the regional committees, the local committees, and the community bases of support and the combatant forces of the EZLN.
Second.- That the companeros who are the Zapatista bases of support stated that the government's proposal was an improvement over its previous proposal, but that it was unacceptable. Since it had both good and bad parts, the document could not be either accepted or rejected, and it was returned to the Clandestine Revolutionary Indigenous Committee--General Command of the EZlN so that it could develop a new proposal to the federal government.
Third.- That the questions about this proposal from the government included the following observations:
a).- The people of Mexico have expressed their support for the just demands of the indigenous movement, but not just with regards to the national demands for democracy, justice and liberty. The indigenous demands are inseparable from the national demands. The Mexican people have not only spoken out against the violence, but have demanded that in order to avoid war, a peace with dignity and justice must be created, which is to say, by finding a solution to the demands of the EZLN. Only mentioning the indigenous movement in Chiapas is without a doubt an attempt to limit the dialogue and the negotiations to the demands of this sector only.
b).- The government's proposal confuses what is called "Integrated Reduction of Tensions" with the combination of the peace process, dialogue, negotiations, accountability and verification. It is clear in various paragraphs, as well as the entire document, that along with the mentioned confusion, absolute preference is given to "social reconciliation in Chiapas" (exclusively in Chiapas) and the conversion of the EZLN to a legal political force, and not to a solution to the demands of the EZLN. In contrast, a different proposal should consider that the measures to reduce tensions are those actions which reduce the hostilities, the risks of confrontations, so that the dialogue and negotiations could develop in a less tense environment. After establishing the first measures to reduce tensions, the rules for proceeding and the agenda would be established. These last things (the rules and the agenda) would allow agreements to be developed regarding the demands of the EZLN, with clear measures of solution and verification; and once these things have been carried out, it would be possible to work on the question of the future of the Zapatista organization, but not before.
c.)- If it is clearly true what the document states about the unilateral ceasefire in January 1994, then it is also certain that it was not an action taken by the current government, and that afterwards there were actions taken by the government that had nothing to do with the reduction of tensions (the most evident was that of February 9, 1995).
d.)- The government's proposal has a serious omission: the way to solve the just demands of the EZLN is not included in it. The process of peace with justice and dignity fundamentally has to take into account that the economic, political, social and cultural causes of the armed uprising HAVE TO BE RESOLVED.
e.)- The government's proposal comes at the wrong time. It should be discussed after our demands have been addressed and satisfactorily solved.
Fourth.- That the Zapatista bases of support ordered the EZLN delegates to meet with the government, to make a new proposal for reducing tensions in order to help the climate for dialogue and negotiations, and that the other proposals be reviewed as they appear in the agenda of the dialogue. They ordered the delegates to present a new proposal to the government in order to insist on reciprocal and proportional measures of reducing tension with the goal of reducing the danger of armed confrontations and provocations, as well as allowing for a more rapid and profound consultation on the agreements that come from this dialogue and negotiations with the government.
Fifth.- That the Zapatista bases of support think that, in its time, the government's proposal has elements that allow for a serious discussion and the possibility of coming to an agreement.
Sixth.- That the Zapatista Army of National Liberation will make public all of its proposals regarding this one point of discussion and all others in the meeting in San Andres Sacamch'en de los Pobres that begins June 7, 1995. Included in them are the points about the agenda and the rules for dialogue and negotiation.
>From the mountains of Southeastern Mexico.
Comandante Tacho, Subcomandante Marcos and Comandante David
Clandestine Revolutionary Indigenous Committee--General Command
of the Zapatista National Liberation Army
Mexico, June 1995