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(en) Mexico: Indigenous Peoples Congress Statement

From John Shafer <wy430@victoria.tc.ca>
Date Sat, 24 Oct 1998 22:49:12 +0200 (IST)

      A - I N F O S  N E W S  S E R V I C E

MEXICO: Indigenous Peoples Congress Statement
Following is the final document of the second National Indigenous Congress,
held from October 9 to 12, 1998, in Mexico.


Second session

The indigenous peoples, communities and organizations of the country,
uniting our voices, minds and hearts as one, as our parents and
grandparents taught us, whom we honor today, as always, and joined once
more in this our house which is the Second National Indigenous Congress,
raise our word in order to solemnly proclaim this:



FIRST - That our true peoples have for centuries been excluded, suppressed
and dominated by those who have taken over the Patria, and in response to
the impossibility of exterminating us, because of the vitality of our
cultures, the owners of the false power have tried to destroy us through
deceptions, manipulations and attempts at co-optation;  they try to divide
us at all costs;  they are determined to make us believe that we are of the
past;  they intend to condemn us to the forgetting, the silence, the
weariness or the slow agony of cultural disintegration, and they anxiously
await the moment they may convert us into architectural ruins or old pieces
in a museum, or better, cynically consume our decomposing remains.
SECOND - That, despite the attempts they have made to destroy us, and
despite the disaster to which some have wanted to drag our Nation, our
cultures, expressions, regulatory systems and forms of life, organization
and display have survived and remain alive, creative and full of energy,
but the effects of that neoliberal project, which sinks its sharpened teeth
into our flesh and injects its fatal globalizing and exclusionary venom,
must be ever more urgently overcome.
THIRD - That the official policy, faithful successor to the old colonial
policies of extermination, tries to divide us more, to take us to a war
between brothers, and to stop the historic march of our peoples;  it
refuses to carry out its word given in the signing of the San Andres
Accords;  it refuses to recognize our existence, our differentness and our
collective rights;  it refuses to assume we are peoples with history, with
roots and with heart.


FIRST - That we assume, with full consciousness, responsibility and deep
determination, the historic task which is ours to foster, with all our
economic, political, cultural and spiritual rebuilding of our peoples and
For this, we must open spaces which make and strengthen us as people and
which fill us with life:
At the community and regional level:  because there we were born and we
were formed in the principles of life which our elders bequeathed us;  we
make ourselves community;  we make ourselves respect;  we make ourselves
source and spring of our peoples.
It will be these spaces where we will have to build, day by day, the
autonomy for which we all yearn.
At the state and national level:  Because there we are creative word, we
are project, we are an immense net which allows us to relate with each
other and interact, we are the tributaries of the great river of hope of
our peoples and of the entire Patria;  this Patria which will never end as
long as we are alive.
This is the space where we join together, where we are one, where we are
On the international level:  because the creative dignity, the purposeful
construction, the opening to others and to all, the also different, are the
true frontier between the future and the forgetting.
This is the space where we are hope and project of a new humanity, because
the struggle of our peoples is not against one particular government, but
rather against a globalizing system which is trying to eliminate us from
the planet.  This struggle with and for the new humanity makes us brothers
between peoples.
SECOND - That by affirming our identity, we affirm that of everyone;  that
of those who, with great hearts and sure steps, wish to build a large house
where all of us who are all fit.  We affirm our existence, standing and
moving, and we confirm we will not renounce our central struggle for
autonomy, for exercising our right to the free self-determination of our
We will not let die - either today or ever - the new fire which has ignited
our peoples since antiquity;  since the sun was born from the night and was
put on high in order to illuminate the paths of our peoples.
THIRD - We ratify that the San Andres Accords are our word, and we will not
desist from it.  We ratify that the initiative of constitutional reform,
proposed by the Cocopa, captures the most essential of San Andres, and that
the constitutional recognition of our full collective rights will not cease
to be the central focus of our struggles and concerns, beyond the political
or electoral times.  Our full collective indigenous rights and their
recognition are the horizon towards which we must guide the steps of our
struggles during the next period;  the next stage of our history to travel;
 the stretch which follows on this long path, which we are not beginning,
because we are only walking the paths of those who came first, those who
saw us born, those who placed our feet on the land.
For this, we responsibly and actively assume our task of preparing,
fostering and carrying out, along with other sectors of society, the
National Consultation called by the EZLN, for the Recognition of the Rights
of the Indian Peoples and an End to the War of Extermination, because it is
our rights and our peoples which are at stake.
For all the previous, we make the following
To our indigenous peoples, communities and organizations in the entire
country, of all the valleys, plains, places, cities and mountains, to put
in their minds and hearts, this our word which we proclaim today, and to
assume with commitment and with one single heart the tasks and labors of
rebuilding, which belong to us all.
To all the brothers of civil society, to widen your hearts more and to walk
with us, actively and creatively, in these noble and important works which
will open the path to the true rebuilding of this our Patria, full of hope,
which is for all.

Proclaimed from the Zocalo of Mexico City, Tenochtitlan
October 12, 1998.



For more information, please contact:
Ce-Acatl, A.C.
Ingenio de Zacatepec 134.  Col. Rinconada Coapa, Mexico 14330 D.F.
Telephone and Fax:  (5) 594-7516
E-mail:  ceacatl@laneta.apc.org

NUEVO AMANECER PRESS- N.A.P.To know about us visit:
General Director: Roger Maldonado Director Europe: Darrin Wood
Coordinator: USA-Mexico-Europe: Susana Saravia (Anibarro)
Correspondent and Advisor: Guillermo Michel (Mexico)
Correspondents and translation: irlandesa (USA) and
Maria Elena Hope (Mexico)
Board of Directors: Mexico
*When reproducing NAP's translations; please give credit*
e-mails: amanecer@aa.net and amanecer@cuhm.mx

South and Meso American Indian Rights Center (SAIIC)
P.O. Box 28703
Oakland CA, 94604
Phone: (510)834-4263   Fax: (510)834-4264
Email: saiic@igc.apc.org
Office: 1714 Franklin Street, 3rd Floor, Oakland

Home Page: http://www.nativeweb.org/saiic

  Originally posted in IGC member conference: [24]saiic.indio
       Date: October 21, 1998
       Posted by: saiic@igc.org
/* Written 6:09 PM  Oct 21, 1998 by saiic@igc.org in saiic.indio */
/* ---------- "Mexico:National Indigenous Congress" ---------- */

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