September 29th, 2023
To the media
To national and international public opinion
To the national coordination space against war,
To the organizations and groups that defend human rights
To the networks of resistance and rebellion
To the National and International Sexta
To the indigenous peoples of Mexico and the world
To those who face the war against the capitalist narco-state and resist
We, the indigenous peoples who make up the National Indigenous Congress, our common home that we established on October 12th, 1996, 27 years ago, to strengthen our struggles of resistance and rebellion through solidarity, strongly denounce, with much concern and much pain, the terrible war situation that our sisters and brothers from Chiapas, Zapatistas and non-Zapatistas, are experiencing. We have repeatedly stated that our world today is at serious risk; the war to strip us of our ways of life, which was born from the servile will to world capital in the National Palace, is today the true paramilitary face that operates with drug and crime cartels, to carry out the war against the Zapatista peoples in Chiapas and the indigenous peoples throughout Mexico, with media manipulation to continue the criminalization of the EZLN and indigenous autonomy, which has existed from the uprising in 1994 until today.
For several months now, the Mexican State has abandoned entire regions of Chiapas to the hands of drug crime. The dispute over territory between the Sinaloa and Jalisco New Generation cartels, with the permission of this Narco-State that permits this situation, leaves hundreds of thousands of inhabitants in a situation of total defenselessness, leading to an alarming and high-risk context in the lives of the affected populations besieged and trapped under the yoke of this wave of violence and terror. Both cartels use them as human shields, forcing them to join one or another of the cartels, to demonstrate on the roads to support them and even to become hitmen, and killing and torturing families who do not cooperate. Schools and government institutions are closed, commerce paralyzed. Total chaos under the wave of terror of recent weeks.
And faced with this terrible war that the narco-state is promoting, a smear campaign has begun against the EZLN in the media, wanting to implicate them in organized crime, when it and we the indigenous peoples suffer and face this policy of death and It is in the Zapatista zone where the organized peoples do not allow the incursion of organized crime cartels into their communities, but they are increasingly besieged by them.
We warn that the dispossession and the war of extermination is deepening through counter-insurgency plans, not only against our Zapatista sisters and brothers but also against comrades from organizations that make up the CNI, seeking to link the Zapatista Indigenous Agrarian Movement with a paramilitary group called Mano Izquierda (Left Hand), which is part of these organized crime groups and has nothing to do with the Zapatista struggle.
All of this, as a strategy to reorganize the territory at national level and especially now, in the southern region of the country with the misnamed Mayan Train, the Interoceanic Corridor, the Morelos Integral Project and hundreds of extractive projects in the rest of the country. In all the states of the country, the towns face mining, hydroelectric projects, highways, development zone projects, among others, which has cost the lives of dozens of compañeros who are members of CNI and other peoples in rebellion, for opposing the destruction of our common home, as we have demonstrated and publicly denounced. We point out that the will of this federal administration is to trample and intensify violence against the people who are defending life and our territories and that the lie of being a “government for the people” that is repeated every morning from the National Palace, falls down because it is increasingly clear that its government is subservient to the cartels and international economic policies through violence and dispossession.
We state that the Zapatista Indigenous Agrarian Movement (MAIZ) is part of the National Indigenous Congress, having a presence in several regions of the country, with work and commitment that it has carried out for 24 years in favor of the indigenous peoples. And that these actions of discrediting and criminalization are part of the war against people and organizations, by putting at risk the integrity of their members and the community work they carry out. Our cmpañeros of the Zapatista Indigenous Agrarian Movement, like many peoples and organizations that make up the CNI, have experienced criminalization by the state, the murder of compañeros at various times in their history, as is the case of our sister Bety Cariño murdered by paramilitary groups from the Triqui region of Oaxaca, who today from the ranks of MORENA hold positions in the Government of Salomón Jara or federal deputies; as well as the case of Sergio Rivera Hernández, defender of the territory of the Sierra Negra of Puebla, disappeared for opposing the Coyolapa-Atzalan hydroelectric project that sought to impose Autlán mining and whose kidnappers are protected by the Poblano Institute of Indigenous Peoples and awarded positions in their indigenous councils so that they operate in favor of organized crime, replicating the same methodology that is generalized in all territories, where there is indigenous resistance against the neoliberal megaprojects of world Capital.
Almost 30 years after the Zapatista uprising and the construction, from its cultural roots, of an autonomous system of life with peace and dignity in its territory liberated from the large landowners, true landowners of the 20th century, we affirm that our older sisters and brothers have been the guarantors of the defense of their territory against the interests of global big capital and have been our teachers in our resistance struggles throughout the country, the only hope of safeguarding humanity against the capitalist madness of destruction of nature that is causing the current planetary climate crisis.
We declare that as indigenous peoples, Zapatistas and non-Zapatistas, we continue and will continue to resist against the repression that the state exercises through the Armed Forces, the National Guard and the police forces and now against the wave of terror sown by the cartels and the paramilitaries supported by federal and state governments. And we will continue to rebuild autonomous living systems without capitalism or patriarchy that guarantee a dignified life for future generations.
Due to this, we urgently call on all organizations, groups and good-hearted people to denounce this war against the people, to show solidarity, organize and rise up in a civil and peaceful struggle for life. Another life is possible, another world is possible. Let’s not let the triad of the State, global companies and drug crime destroy us.
Therefore, we reiterate the urgent call to participate in the global action called for next October 12th, which marks 531 years of indigenous resistance: Stop the war against indigenous peoples!
THE WAR AGAINST THE PEOPLE IN MEXICO IS CALLED A CAPITALIST NARCO-STATE!
COORDINATION COMMITTEE OF THE NATIONAL INDIGENOUS CONGRESS- INDIGENOUS GOVERNMENT COUNCIL
NEVER AGAIN A MEXICO WITHOUT US!
Translated by Schools for Chiapas