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(en) Mexico, Oaxaca, 7th Megamarch in November 25th + Declaration of APPO

Date Mon, 27 Nov 2006 17:58:26 +0200

The march was yet another incredible showing of support for APPO and for the
removal of both the corrupt governor of Oaxaca, Ulises Ruiz Ortiz, and the
Federal Preventative Police who have been in Oaxaca for almost a month now...
The crowd was incredibly diverse. People came out from their homes applauding
the march and many handed out sandwiches, fruit, and water...
After marching for 5 hours from a town outside the city, the march began to
circle the main square, which the federal police have occupied since their
arrival. The police were in full riot gear at each of the entrances to the main
square. In many of the entrances a police officer could be seen on top of the
armored vehicles armed with live ammunition. Within half an hour street battles
broke out between the movement and the police in atleast two of the entrances.

Some members of the movement, armed with rocks, maltov cocktails and fireworks,
faced off with the police who used an an incredible amount of tear gas, rocks
and marbles shot with slingshots. After awhile the police pushed the people
north up the hill, at one point taking over the Santo Domingo plaza where the
movement has been centered since the police forced them out of the main square.
The police continued to fire teargas into the crowd and burnt the tarps and
other items in the Santo Domingo plaza. The report from APPO's most recent
Constitutive Congress were scattered all over the ground. During this time plain
clothed police were detaining people in the streets. After the police retreated
back to the main square, many movement members regrouped in Santo Domingo as
night was falling...

All of a sudden the police lines began advancing back up the hill on multiple
streets at once forcing the crowd to run up the hill. I took this last photo as
I was running from the police with hundreds of others. Medics were running
behind me with a man on a stretcher clenching a blloody cloth against his head.
They slid into the makeshift clinic that was set up weeks ago in the Santo
Domingo plaza closing the door behind them.

The police advanced over eight blocks forcing the crowd to continue running
north of the main square. Paramilitary groups also arrived on the scene shooting
into the crowd as people ran for their lives. Throughout the next few hours
federal police and plainclothed gunmen continued to attack members of the
movement who had taken cover in various locations. Three movement members are
dead, over 100 detained, and over 200 injured (40 with live amunition). These
people are guilty of simply demanding justice and trying to organize an
alternative to the corrupt and repressive leadership that governs their state.
The Mexican federal government's response, supposedly to restore peace, has
instead attempted to maintain the exploitive status quo through further
repression and with no regard for the true root causes of this conflict, the
extreme poverty and injust government policies that benefit a few at the cost of
the majority. Please continue to take action in solidarity with the people of

For more photos of the struggle in Oaxaca...

Declaration from APPO on Saturday's violence





The Popular Assembly of the Peoples of Oaxaca, after the aggression that our
people have suffered in recent hours, in the framework of our fight for a
profound transformation in the political, social, and cultural situation, in
order to overcome the ancestral misery and hunger to which our people have been
subject to by the oppressors…

To frame the day of struggle that we planned for yesterday, November 25th, the
APPO considered a "mega-march", which left from the Official House in Santa
Maria Coyotopec with the aim of concluding in the historic center of the city
with the establishment of a siege [alt. tr.: ring] around the Federal
Preventative Police (PFP) who were found occupying the zócalo of this city, and
the siege would be in a peaceful manner with contact with the PDP, and in view
of the events that unfolded yesterday, the Popular Assembly of the Peoples of
Oaxaca makes the following:


That Ulises Ruiz Ortiz has, since a few days ago, declared that the operation of
a plan to obtain control of the city before December 1st was beginning.

That the PFP has, in coordination with various police forces, assassins [alt.
tr.: hitmen], paramilitaries, and thugs of Ulises Ruiz Ortiz, since a few days
ago, began to station themselves on various roofs in the historic center, where
in many cases we received complaints from the neighbors that this was done with
the permissions of the property owners, the idea being that from these places
they would provoke aggressions against this movement.

That yesterday, after the commission of the Popular Council of the Peoples of
Oaxaca went around to the majority of the intersections to establish the siege
of the PDP, police, assassins and paramilitaries [who were] positioned on the
roofs of various buildings in the historic center began to throw marbles, pepper
spray and tear gas at our compañeros at various points to provoke a widespread
aggression which was unleashed in an instant, in a widespread offensive, which
consisted of the aggression of the PFP at various intersections, massive
detentions of compañeros who were collected at various places in the city, the
immediate actions of the thugs and paramilitaries that participated alongside
the PFP and other police forces, many of whom fired guns against militants of
the APPO.

That in view of this general offensive of the aggressors, the members of the
APPO and the people in general made use of their legitimate right to defend
themselves, to avoid a massacre against our people, making use of roks, sticks,
cohetones, and other objects that they could find along their way, now that the
majority did not come prepared for a confrontation.

That after the preliminary information that we have up to now, there are 165
political prisoners, dozens of disappeared, hundreds of injured and wounded, and
also various dead, which up to now we have no been able to confirm.

In view of this situation, the Popular Assembly of the Peoples of Oaxaca makes
the following declarations:

We strongly condemn this attack of repression that our people has suffered, and
they continue as in the worst periods of fascism in history.

We reaffirm our fight for a social, political and economic transformation, and
the struggle for popular power [alt. trans.: power of the people], and we
reaffirm that the fall of the tyrant Ulises Ruiz is the beginning of the
reestablishment of peace and tranquility for Oaxacans, as is the immediate
withdrawal of the PFP, who since their arrival have only increased the violence
and ungovernability in Oaxaca.

We confirm that the struggle of the people of Oaxaca and the APPO is a struggle
of the masses in which the people of Oaxaca are participating and has a civil
and peaceful character, which is why we declare that the burning of various
buildings in the city was not under the guidance, nor a decision, of the APPO.

We denounce that they, some moments ago, transferred various compañeros who were
in the Miahuatlan de Porfirio Diaz prison, Oaxaca—among them the compañeros
Cesar Mateos Benitez and Jorge Sosa Campos—to an unknown location, without a
single motive, in that they have violated their most fundamental human rights.

The presence of the PFP and the incidents which occurred demonstrate that in the
state of Oaxaca there exists ungovernability and that peace has not returned for
the people of Oaxaca.

We declare that the struggle of the People of Oaxaca for the fall of URO
continues because our day of struggle and our plan of action will continue

For the above reasons, we make a call to the peoples of México and the whole
World, to continue actions of solidarity with the people of Oaxaca and to stop
the bloody repression that continues developing against our people, to the
national and international press, to human rights organizations, to form
brigades to assist this city to raise the incidents of violation of the most
fundamental human rights against our people.



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