Defense of Territory

Pronouncement from the V Assembly of the Women’s Movement in Defense of Mother Earth and Our Territories

Women from 6 regions of Chiapas pronounce, “We have dignity and confidence that women, communities, neighborhoods and civil organizations will make and be a network to be able to confront this wave of systematic violence…Together and organized we will overcome.”

Schools for Chiapas is honored to be able to support these gatherings of women defenders of territory and life.

The government “is on the side of the businessmen who are the land grabbers” – Múuch’ Xíimbal

In recent years the Mayan community of Ixil Yucatan has been the target of several attempts to dispossess them of their lands; first for the installation of large-scale wind energy projects, then for real estate speculation, under false pretenses entrepreneurs attempted to take their lands but the community have manage to recover them; now they are again trying to dispossess them of more than 300 hectares that are being used for community projects. Last August 17, the Yucatan state police prevented them from accessing their lands because of an alleged sale they had made, which the ejidatarios deny having sold.

Territories of Resistance and Healing

Women’s Movement in Defense of Mother Earth and Territory seeks a way to join efforts with other movements in the country and the world in defense of nature, the environment, peasants, indigenous peoples, and women who are the most affected by the violence of the capitalist system. The movement, driven by the strength and determination of indigenous and peasant women, has sought, since its inception, to transcend individual and local processes, heading towards the regional construction of the Movement to fight against all forms of violence against women and their families generated by the neo-liberal, patriarchal and neo-extractivist capitalist system — from the increase in poverty, migration and drug trafficking, to the dispossession of land by other groups, organized crime, or even sometimes by their own family members.

Being Different, to Change the World

Difference, differences, are potentially anti-capitalist, but not in a mechanical way. In the same sense, we can assure that if there are no ways of life, no cultures and cosmovisions different from the hegemonic ones, any lasting resistance is impossible, any aspiration to change the world and overcome capitalism by building worlds-others, new and, above all, that are different. This point has been sufficiently emphasized by the Zapatista Army of National Liberation.

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