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(en) Czech, Ostrava Anarchist Federation OAF: Anarchy in Cherán: 10 years ago, people expelled the police, politics and the mafia

Date Tue, 27 Jul 2021 09:24:42 +0300

They expelled them from the city and they still govern themselves ---- In the spring, exactly 10 years have passed since the people of Mexican Cheran rebelled against police repression, plunder of nature and organized crime and took control. ---- Although it may seem that the anarchist movement is currently on the defensive, there are still places where anarchy is flourishing, developing its potential and inspiring us to fight for a free society. One of these places is the Mexican city of Cherán located in the state of Michoacán, with a population comparable to Uherský Brod or Jicín. The area has long been plagued by corruption and crime, with the police, city councilors and the mafia holding an informal class alliance against the underprivileged.

People ran out of patience when one of the rich families started burning the forest over a planned avocado plantation. The attempt of several women to talk to the forest workers of their actions ended in fiasco, and so the protests escalated into a blockade of trucks and the gradual armament of ordinary people in the city. As people began to form their own armed forces, the mayor, mobsters and police fled the city. Cherán began to be governed by a system of direct democracy. The people - unlike some social activists in the Czech Republic - did not waste time in parliamentary elections, did not wait for any authentic left-wing party or look for allies in the government. They realized that only they themselves could help, through radical direct action.

What impact did the abolition of the police have on crime in the city? Very significant - Cherán became the city with the lowest crime rate in the country. As Melissa, a medical student, told the BBC in 2016, " I feel safe in Cherán because I can walk the streets at night and I am not afraid that something may happen to me. "

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