Chiapas on the Brink of Civil War

Communiqué of the Revolutionary Indigenous Clandestine Committee -General Command of the Zapatista Army of National Liberation.


19 of September  2021.

To the People of Mexico:

To the Peoples of the World:

To the National and International Sixth:

A Europe of Below and on the Left:

First – On the day of September 11th 2021, in the morning hours and with the Zapatista airborne delegation finding themselves in Mexico City, members of ORCAO, a paramilitary organization in service to the government of the state of Chiapas, kidnapped the compañeros Sebastián Nuñez Perez y Jose Antonio Sanchez Juarez, Autonomous Authorities of the Good Government Council of Patria Nueva, Chiapas.

ORCAO is a political-military organization of a paramilitary nature — it has uniforms, gear, weapons and a fleet obtained with the money that it receives from social programs. They keep a portion and the other portion is given to officials in order to publicize that they are complying with the social programs. With these weapons, they are firing every night on the Zapatista Community of Moisés Gandhi.

The EZLN waited patiently until all of the possible channels for a solution were exhausted. While the government of the state of Chiapas sabotaged and hindered the liberation, it was the organizations in defense of human rights and the progressive Catholic Church who rightly assessed what could be done.

Second – The compañeros were deprived of their freedom for 8 days and were released today, the 19th of September 2021. Thanks to the intervention of the parishioners of San Cristobal de las Casas and of Oxchuc, which to the Diocese of San Cristóbal. The compañeros were robbed of their communications radio and six thousand pesos in cash that belong to the Good Government Council. 

Third – The crime of kidnapping is punishable by the laws of the bad government and by Zapatista law. While the government of the state of Chiapas was concealing and encouraging these crimes, and did nothing, the Zapatista Army of National Liberation began to take the necessary measures to free the hostages and arrest and punish those responsible for the crime. 

Fourth – If the conflict did not escalate to the point of a tragedy, it was because of the intervention of the aforementioned parishioners, the organizations defending human rights, and the mobilizations and denunciations that were carried out in Mexico and, above all, in Europe.

Fifth – The dis-goverment of Rutilio Escandón is doing everything possible to destabilize the Mexican southeastern state of Chiapas:

It indulges in violent  repression of  rural normalistas1.

It sabotages the agreements made between the democratic magistrate and the federal government, forcing the teachers to mobilize radically so that the agreements are fulfilled.

Its alliances with narcotrafficking incite the indigenous communities to have to form self-defense groups, because the government does nothing to protect life, liberty and the property of the inhabitants. The government of Chiapas not only conceals the groups of narcotraffickers, it also encourages, promotes and finances paramilitary groups like those that are continuously attacking in Aldama and Santa Martha.

It is pursuing a purposefully slow and disorganized policy of vaccination which is sowing discontent in the rural population which will not take long to explode. Meanwhile, the number of Covid deaths  in the communities is rising without being taken into account. 

Its officials are stealing all that they can from the state budget. Maybe they are preparing for a collapse of the federal government and betting on a change of the party in power. 

Just now it tried to sabotage the departure of the Zapatista delegation that is participating in the Journey for Life, European Chapter, ordering the kidnapping of our compañeros by paramilitaries of ORCAO, letting the crime go unpunished, and trying to provoke a reaction from the EZLN with the aim of destabilizing a state whose governability hangs by a thread.

Sixth – If the objective of the Ecologist Green Party of Mexico (PVEM) is to provoke a problem that will have international repercussions, as well as destabilizing the regime in power, it is better to resort to the recall referendum.

The PVEM is one of the names that the old PRI uses in these lands. Sometimes it is the PAN, sometimes it is PRD, but now it is PVEM, poorly disguised as the Party for the National Regeneration Movement (Morena). They are the same criminals as before and now they are part of the poorly named “opposition” movement, like the “Fifth Column” in the 4T2.

  Those responsible are: Rutilio Escandón and Victoria Cecilia Flores Pérez.

If what you want is to remove the current federal government, or cause difficulties like reprisals for the criminal investigations against you, or if you are playing on one of the factions that is vying for the election of 2024, use the legal channels to which you have access and stop now with playing with the life, liberty and property of the Chiapanecans. Vote and call for a vote for a recall mandate and stop playing with fire, because you are going to get burned. 

Seventh – We call on the Europe of below and on the left, and on the National and International Sixth to demonstrate in front of the embassies and consulates of Mexico, and in the houses of government of the state of Chiapas, to demand that they stop with their provocations and abandon the cult of death that they preach. The date is Friday, September 24th of 2021.

In light of the action and negligence of the state and federal authorities in the face of the current and previous crimes, we will take the necessary measures to bring the criminals of ORCAO and the officials who sponsor them. 

That is all. On another occasion there will be no communiqué. That is, there will be no words, but actions.

From the mountains of the Mexican Southeast. 

In the name of the CCRI-CG of the EZLN

Subcomandante Insurgente Galeano.

México, 19th of September, 2021.

This communiqué was published on September 19th, 2021 on This English translation has been re-posted by Schools for Chiapas.

Want to receive our weekly blog digest in your inbox?

We don’t spam! Read our privacy policy for more info.


  1. Students at the Escuelas Normales, or rural teachers’ colleges.
  2. The López Obrador campaign deemed its governing project the “Fourth Transformation” (4T), on par with historic events such as Mexican Independence (1810), a period of reform in the mid-19th century, and the Mexican Revolution (1910).
Shopping Cart
Scroll to Top