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(en) Mexico, Oaxaca, Another take on CONSEJO INDÍGENA POPULAR DE OAXACA “Ricardo Flores Magón” (CIPO-RFM) OBSTINATE ENEMIES OF INJUSTICE

From Worker <a-infos-en@ainfos.ca>
Date Sun, 13 Feb 2005 09:48:35 +0100 (CET)


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“The solidarity of others is our own defense.” Praxedis G. Guerrero, Puntos Rojos (1906)
The Consejo Indígena Popular de Oaxaca “Ricardo Flores Magón” CIPO-RFM is
the house of the poor fighting against injustice. We are an organization of
communities that use non-violent resistance. Our strength lies in helping
each other, and in our independence from all political parties, legal or
secret, and from all the institutions and organizations of the government.
The activities of CIPO-RFM are the outcome of agreements achieved in
meetings, thus we all share the successes and failures.
CIPO currently represents 24 communities of Chatin, Mixtec, Chinantec, Cuicatec,
Zapotec, Mixe, Triqui, black or half-caste villages. Our house is open to all of them.

THE MAGONISTA DREAM

“The fight for freedom also has its lovers.”

Praxedis G. Guerrero, Puntos Rojos (1906)

Our mission is the reconstitution and free association of our villages, to
exercise autonomy and direct action on the magonista path:

- To help the villages and workers to organize themselves liberally, not
necessarily within the CIPO-RFM.
- To promote, diffuse and defend our human, territorial, economic, social,
political and cultural rights, as communities and as individuals.
- To advise and help the communities, organizations, authorities and
individuals, natives or not, that ask for our support in their struggle.
- To encourage sustainable projects (production, services,
commercialization, etc.) that allow a complete development of the native
communities, safeguarding the ecosystems and respecting the people.
- To investigate, document, analyze and diffuse the actions and stuggles of
the communities.
- To engage in the defense and the protection of our environment and
territory, as well as to revalue the worldview of our communities.
- To develop methods of alternative communication: radio, television,
press, internet, etc.
- To put in practice concrete actions to achieve authentic respect for
diversity, and for the rights of women and children.

WITHOUT LOSING KINDNESS

“There’s no need to hate in order to fight for freedom. Without hate one
can build tunnels, erect dikes on rivers, without hate one can open the
ground to sow grain, without hate despotism can be annihilated… rebellion
does not imply brutality.”

Praxedis G. Guerrero, Puntos Rojos (1907)

We chose the name Ricardo Flores Magón because he was a libertarian,
indigenous, and even though he was born in Oaxaca, his heart, thoughts and
work were for the freedom of all people.
Following his principles means fighting without seeking material wealth or
any personal profit, struggling to evict egoism, leaders and lies, and
living without aspiration for power or its imposition on anyone. We keep as
basic principles reciprocal aid, solidarity, non-violent direct action,
autonomy and self-government as the way to freedom.
The members of CIPO-RFM are also called Magonistas since the Magonismo is
the way we intend to fight.

A STORY OF MANY STORIES

“While they counted dollars I spent my time counting stars. I wanted to
make a man out of each human animal, while they, more practical, made an
animal out of each man, and made themselves shepherds. However, I prefer to
be a dreamer than a practical man.”

Ricardo Flores Magón, Epistolario Revolucionario e íntimo (1920)

CIPO-RFM is the result of a long path of organization and struggle in the
communities that started in the eighties. Every one of us participated,
with different ambitions and methods, against the same enemy.
We have endured incomprehension and divisions, and committed many errors
before being what we are: an organization in permanent evolution.
Our existence has been difficult: people have been kidnapped, murdered,
imprisoned and tortured; our misfortunes and failures led us to construct a
co-op where anyone is welcome to live and join us in our struggle.

Introduction:

The Consejo Indígena Popular de Oaxaca “Ricardo Flores Magón” (CIPO-RFM) is
an organization of indigenous communities that support each other and work
independently from all political parties and from all governmental
institutions. CIPO-RFM has a home in Oaxaca City where anyone who wants to
join us in our non-violent struggle is welcome. You can participate as an
international human rights observer or in the variety of projects developed
in our communities.

INDIGENOUS PEOPLES

Mexico is formed by a diversity of peoples and cultures that has always
differentiated from the rest of the national society. Actually there are 59
different peoples that combined make more that 10 million of the Mexican
population. The indigenous peoples living in the state of Oaxaca make the
70% of the population in this state situated south of Mexico.

THE VALUE OF THESE CULTURES

Through our cultures we have found values such respect for nature and human
life, through our traditions and costumes we have been able to practice
those values and not like governments and political parties just talk about
respect, justice, honesty, freedom, equality, solidarity and mutual
co-operation.
The culture of our peoples manifests in their view of the world, their
language, their clothes, medicine, gastronomy, music, dances, way of
organising and our own method of electing our authorities through the
people’s assembly, this represents a pillar of life to counter the
onslaught and divisions caused by the political parties. The ‘tequio’ is
the community labour that allows us relate to our mother land and nature,
it is done freely and helps develop our community.


INTANGIBLE AND INSTRUMENTAL VALUES

We could classify some of the values found in the traditions and costumes
of these peoples in two categories: intangible and instrumental; intangible
values such as respect, freedom, honesty. Instrumental values such as ways
of labouring, as is the case of the tequio, method of electing authorities,
ways of organising as a community, celebrations, etc.

CULTURE AND THE CAPITALIST SYSTEM

All along history, political parties, governments and big corporations had
shown contempt for our cultures; our way of life and instead of helping to
maintain and strengthen them they have try to destroy the richness our
cultures contain. We have a deep respect for our land, through one of our
rites we ask nature permission to built a house or to sow the land. They
come with not respect introducing in the country, the states and our
communities mega projects of foreign companies that destroy our forests,
hydroelectric companies taking over our rivers…
Regarding our way of organising, successive governments have try to divide
us through political parties, trying to destroy our assemblies, our tequio
and the social benefit that it represents for our community, with money
they have bribed people to help them dismantle the organisations that we
have had through our history and our culture have been turn into businesses
for our governments, commercialised through events such as “La Guelaguetza”
in Oaxaca. The event gathers all aspects of indigenous culture: music,
dance, clothing, gastronomy, the name means “Mutual Help” in indigenous, so
far from the reality where the only ones with access to these festivities
our the tourists and the local rich, with the government pocketing the
profits and not even sending a penny to the true owners of culture that the
event represents.
Our governments prostitute our Indigenous Culture, for us this is
unacceptable, commercialising it is a way of limit its original value, our
culture is part of our life as indigenous, we lose our dignity when they
sell our culture.


INDIGENOUS CULTURE’S DEFENSE

For all these we decided to organise to defend what is left, to protest
against the government policies towards our people, against a government
that keep us being a tourist attraction at their convenience and thinks
about us every six years for the elections.
On November 17th 1997 we formed the Popular Indigenous Committee of
Oaxaca-Ricardo Flores Magon (CIPO-RFM). It began being a group formed by
different organisations, in 1998 some left and by 2000 it had become what
it is today. CIPO-RFM started to work right within the communities.
Through non violent struggle we demand our right us people, our autonomy,
recognition of our territories, recognition of our own laws, we demand
electricity, health centres, decent housing, schools, the right to
participate in decisions that affect us. We demand to be treated with
dignity as humans and not beasts.

REPRESION CASES

For making these demands we are repressed, kidnapped, tortured and murdered
by paramilitary groups financed by the government. Such was the case of
Santa Maria Yaviche, where on October 16th 2003 members of CROCUT commanded
by their leader Cesar Toimil Roberts and Jacobo Chavez disrupted an
assembly armed with clubs, machetes and rifles with the intention of
killing the commoners. As a result of this massacre nine comrades were
critically wounded and Bartolome Chavez Salas lost his life, he had several
bullet wounds and machete strokes on the head and neck that stop short of
cutting him in two.
Eusebio Aparicio Garcia, from the community of Lagunilla Yonosotu Oaxaca,
murdered on February 24th 2004, and Pedro Cruz Salazar from Yucunicuca
Oaxaca, killed on July 13th the same year by a paramilitary group from
Santa Lucia MonteVerde.
We have reported and denounced these events but to date we have had no
response; on the contrary the people responsible for these murders are
still free and when we demonstrate to demand justice we suffer more
repression. On September 14th last year we were evicted from our protest
camp at six in the morning by a strong force of more than 100 police
officers from the different government police forces. This action was
directed by the Secretary of Public Protection Dept. Jose Manuel Veras
Salinas and the President for the Human Rights Committee Sergio Segrestes
Rios. In this violent act they arrested 14 compañer@s within them three
minors, two girls and one boy.
To date we have liberated 10 compañer@s with the help of everyone in the
communities who have sold everything they had to pay for the bails of 4500
euros
of each one of them. We also received support from some countries here in
Europe.
On December 22nd we were evicted again, this time with an order from the
new governor for the state Ulises Ruiz Ortiz. More than 150 police
assaulted elders, children and compañer@s that were supporting the protest
camp opposite the Government Palace.
At present they are trying to evict us from the building that CIPO has in
Oaxaca City.

For all the above we demand:

a) That people monitor and demand from the Mexican Estate compliance and
implementation of the recommendations, preventative measures and
international norms of human rights for cases like ours, especially
compliance with the preventative measures dictated by the Interamerican
Committee of Human Rights in favour of the life of the comrade Raul Gatica
Bautista. We ask you to monitor that the government complies with these
measures.

b) To promote international cooperation and for the national budget to be
destined to peace projects, social development and justice and against the
strengthening of repressive forces.

c) To intervene for the immediate release of our brothers and sisters,
indigenous jailed since September 14th 2004 at the penitentiaries of
Ixcotel, Etla and Miahuatlan; Dolores Villalobos Cuamatzi, Magarita Garcia
Garcia, Jose Cruz Cruz and Habacuc Cruz Cruz, and the drop of charges for
those who are free on bail.
d) To dismantle paramilitary groups in Oaxaca and the rest of Mexico,
punishment to CROCUT members (Cesar Toimil and Jacobo Chavez) who in
October 16th 2003 murdered Bartolome Salas and shot 9 men and women in Sta.
Maria Yaviche. Also for group Antorcha Campesina that in August 11th 2002
murdered 2 children and wounded 34 women in the locality of Iyusion San
Isidro Aloapan.
e) The trial in court of those who planned, organised, order and executed
acts of repression against us violating our basic human rights.
f) To exhort the Oaxaca government to dialogue for the resolution of
conflicts between the government of Oaxaca and the CIPO-RFM. To end this
climate of repression and human rights violation against individuals and
collectives of the indigenous people and communities and to address our
fair demands.


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