On May 9 we published a statement of the Popular Indigenous Council of Guerrero-Emiliano Zapata (CIPOG-EZ) about the kidnapping and murder of comrades Modesto Verales Sebastián and José Lucio Bartolo. What follows is a joint statement by CNI-CIG and EZLN about the same case.
Originally published by Enlace Zapatista. Image above: Archive image of EZLN activists in Chiapas.
The National Indigenous Congress [CNI], the Indigenous Governing Council [CIG], and the Zapatista Army for National Liberation [EZLN] condemn with pain and rage the kidnapping and murders of José Lucio Bartolo Faustino, CIG council member from the Nahua indigenous community of Xicotlán, and Modesto Verales Sebastián, delegate of the National Indigenous Congress from the Nahua indigenous community of Buenavista. Both were part of the Emiliano Zapata Popular Indigenous Council of Guerrero [CIPOG-EZ], which is a member organization of the CNI-CIG. This crime was carried out by narco-paramilitary groups who operate in the municipality of Chilapa de Álvarez and who are protected by the Mexican Army as well as by municipal and state police.
At 3pm yesterday, May 4, our compañeros were attending a meeting with other members of the CIPOG-EZ in Chilpancingo, Guerrero. On their way back to their communities they were kidnapped and murdered by these narco-paramilitary groups which operate with total complicity and protection from all three levels of the bad government, which pretend to address the indigenous communities’ demands for security and justice. The indigenous communities have repeatedly denounced to the federal government the impunity with which the criminal Celso Ortega wages violence against them. It is important to mention that our murdered compañeros and their communities have for years been organizing their own Community Police in order to resist the violence, extortion, and poppy cultivation imposed by two criminal groups in the area, Los Ardillos and Los Rojos. These two groups control municipal presidencies across the region and are protected by the Mexican army and the municipal and state police. At one point they even managed to get one of their leaders named president of the Guerrero State Congress.
We hold all three levels of bad government responsible for this cowardly crime as they have been complicit in repressing our peoples’ organization in defense of their territories. We also hold the bad government responsible for the safety and security of our brothers and sisters of the CIPOG-EZ.
As the National Indigenous Congress-Indigenous Governing Council and the Zapatista Army for National Liberation, we send our collective embrace and solidarity to the family members and compañeros of José Lucio Bartolo Faustino and Modesto Verales Sebastián, and we share with them our commitment to continue this path of autonomy and dignity for which our fallen compañeros provide a light and an example.
We denounce the intensification of neoliberal repression against the originary peoples, nations, and tribes who do not consent to these projects of death in Guerrero and in all of Mexico, nor to the violence which is used to impose these projects and to repress, kidnap, disappear, and murder those of us who have decided to sow a new world from the indigenous geographies that we are.
We demand justice for our compañeros.
For the Full Reconstitution of Our Peoples
Never Again a Mexico Without Us
National Indigenous Congress
Indigenous Governing Council
Zapatista Army for National Liberation
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