More than 20 displaced indigenous Triqui members of the Autonomous Municipality of San Juan Copala and followers of the organization Oaxacan Voices Constructing Autonomy and Freedom (VOCAL) were arrested by local police in the “official” municipality of Oaxaca de Juárez Oct. 3 for attempting to occupy a predio (land holding) at the community of San Martín Mexicapan. The occupation was the latest confrontation in an ongoing dispute in southern Mexico’s Oaxaca state between the self-declared autonomous municipality and supporters of the “official” authorities. (La Jornada, Oct. 3)
A group of displaced Triqui women from San Juan Copala were forced by the government of Oaxaca to suspend their peaceful sit-in which began more than a year ago. The Autonomous Municipality initially agreed to suspend the sit-in temporarily to allow Independence Day ceremonies in Oaxaca’s central plaza to go ahead on Sept. 16. The government agreed to provide the women and children with temporary shelter, and to address their demand that they be allowed to return to their mountain pueblo, from which they were driven by paramilitary threats. But when they attempted to resume the sit-in, they were met with threats of police force. Autonomous authorities say they will re-establish the sit-in “at any cost” if their demands are not met. (Intercontinental Cry, Sept. 29)
See our last post on the struggle in Mexico.