Federal police occupy Mexican village in toxic waste fight

For the past two weeks, some 200 troops from Mexico’s elite Federal Preventive Police (PFP) have occupied the village of Zimapán, Hidalgo, the scene of protests over a toxic waste site that the Spanish firm Befesa is scheduled to open this month. Heavily armed troops—some in ski masks and full riot gear—arrived in military-type trucks backed up by helicopters June 12, and continue to patrol the town’s streets. The former bishops of the conflicted San Cristóbal diocese in Chiapas, Samuel Ruiz García and Raúl Vera López, have demanded the withdrawal of the PFP. (vaXtuxpan, June 30; La Jornada, June 17; Radio AMLO, June 15)

Residents of the local community of Botiña, where the plant is being built, have joined with the civic group Todos Somos Zimapán in calling for a general municipality-wide plebiscite on the waste facility. (La Jornada, June 30)

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