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(en) Mexico, [caravan99] Oaxaca, The struggle continues a call for actions

Date Fri, 13 Oct 2006 08:06:35 +0200


We have been with 9 people from Belgium and the Netherlands in Oaxaca for
8 days, wrote a lot about it for mainly indymedia.nl. Almost every night
people from our group slept in the streets to be able to observe if there
should be an attack, either by the army or by PRI or paramilitary people.
The atmosphere in Oaxaca is great.
For me it was very inspiring to be there. People of Oaxaca are very poor,
and the touristindustry is very important. At the moment there are hardly
tourists and some of the people are not working for 4 months. But they are
planning to stay, take their lives in their own hands and fight for their rights.
It is really a pity we had to leave, i would have stayed if i could.

Some backgroundinformation
In may this year the teachersunion SNTE of Oaxaca, one of the poorest
states of Mexico, went to the streets to demand better workconditions and
improvement of the schoolsystem. There were a lot of big demnstrations.
In june they occupied the centrum square in Oaxaca.
In the night of the 14th of june the police evicted the protesters with a
lot of violence. They came for instance with a lot of teargass in the
unionbuilding and destroyed all equipment of the legal radiostation Radio
Planton and jailed all the people who were present at that time.

After the police left the square the people of Oaxaca came with big masses
to occupy it again. A few days later, on the 17th of june, they founded
APPO (Asamblea Popular de Pueblos de Oaxaca) and they are still occupying
the citycentre of Oaxaca, 4 months later. One of the main demands is the
resignation of the gouvernor Ulises Ruiz Ortiz. He is from the PRI.
Besides this demand APPO want more democracy, freedom and equality for
everyone, especially for the indigenas, and a better scholingsystem.
They occupied all stateradiostations and the tvstations. Most of them were
abandoned soon after. Now only Radio La Ley del Pueblo is still in hands
of APPO. The state destroyed the tvtransmitter and one of the
radiotransmitters.
Radio La Ley is still in the air and on internet (via the website of APPO,
http://www.asambleapopulardeoaxaca.com).

Three weeks ago APPO and the teachers started a march to Mexico city. They
reached Mexico city this monday, they walked ca 500 km in 20 days, and
there was a big demonstration together with people from Atenco and La Otra
Campaña.
During this time the state send the army and a part of the navy to be
close to the city. They also send Zeta´s in, a kind of undercover
armydivision, which is know for its extreme violence.
The citycentre is barricaded by night and partly by day, a lot of people
are sleeping on the streets every night, for 4 months now, to defend the
city when the army will come.

In Mexico city APPO started to talk about founding an Asamblea Popular de
Pueblos de Mexico. There are also talks with the parlement and the
gouvernment. Yesterday several members of parlement were visiting Oaxaca
to see the situation and talk with the people. During this visit APPO
occupied several statebuildings outside the centre. At one of this action
securityguards shot at the protesters and 2 people were injured.

So:
It is very unclear what will happen now, the situation can not stay this
way for longer, perhaps there will be some kind of agreement between the
central gouvernment and APPO or the army can try to take back the city.
When the army will invade Oaxaca, there will be a lot of people coming to
the city and help. It will be a bloodbath...

So if you are able to help, if you can do an action or anything, please
do. I think this to be an crucial moment

C.
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