Other Campaign Suspended: Red Alert in the Zapatista Good Government Councils of Chiapas

MEXICO CITY, MAY 3, 2006: As the political demonstration in the Plaza of the Three Cultures, in this city’s Tlatelolco neighborhood, came to an end, in reaction to the confrontations between flower producers and police in Texcoco leaving one dead -14 year old child Javier Cortéz- , Delegate Zero-Subcomandante Marcos decreed a red alert in the Zapatistas’ Good Government Councils in Chiapas and the temporary suspension of the Other Campaign’s activities. The preceding information has been confirmed by telephone from Tlalteloco by Narco News/Other Journalism correspondent Roberto Chan Kin Ortega and by Hermann Bellinghausen of the Mexico City newspaper La Jornada.

Through this morning and afternoon the clash between flower growers and police has been reported mainly by a few radio stations and briefs on the La Jornada website. Just a few kilometers away from the battle-tested town of San Salvador Atenco, according to information from La Jornada reporters René Ramón and Javier Salinas, “at least nine municipal police and six flower sellers were injured in a confrontation that occurred this morning when the farmers, supported by the Peoples’ Front in Defense of the Land (the organization of Atenco farmers that successfully blocked an airport project on their land in 2002), tried to set up in front of the Belisario Domínguez market to sell their products. After the scuffle about 50 Atenco residents took refuge in an apartment building armed with sticks, machetes and rocks. Meanwhile, around 500 riot police remain in the streets and 500 Atenco residents are blocking the Texcoco federal highway.”

Ramón and Salinas’ reports in La Jornada maintain that “the tension rose in the area as federal forces and several helicopters arrived. In total there are 800 riot police in the zone. One of the people holed up in the apartment building is Ignacio del Valle, leader of the Peoples’ Front in Defence of the Land. Around 2:45 pm another clash occurred due to an attempt to remove the Atenco residents from the Texcoco highway. The protesters began throwing Molotov cocktails and burning tires.”

According to Narco News correspondent Chan Kin Ortega at 6:20 p.m., people are marching toward the office of the federal government’s Interior Minister tonight. Tomorrow at 8 a.m. the Other Campaign will assemble at the University of Chapingo (in Ecatepec, near the scene of today’s violence in the state of Mexico). A mobilization has also been called tonight for adherents to the Other Campaign and people in general at the Fierro Bridge and the University of Chapingo to support the people under attack.

Kind readers, Narco News’ Other Journalism Road Team will be reporting on all the events of the coming hours and days…

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