The land is allocated to those who work it and live on it.


"This land has already been allocated to those who actually work it and live on it ": Zapatista supporters
4th November
Chiapas, Mexico. "The bad government should be ashamed of claiming that their police protect and safeguard the social order and keep the peace, when, right in front of them, thefts, threats, paramilitary actions, gunshots, evictions, dispossession of the lands and crops of our compañeros are all committed”, declared members of the Good Government Junta (JBG), “New Seed that is going to produce”, from the Northern Zone of Chiapas.
"We ask them what do they want to achieve with all these acts? Say what you want, speak clearly as we have, better to say that you want to kill, displace, assassinate, rob. Such a shame that in Mexico there is a bad government that instead of having intelligence in its head has shit for brains”, the Zapatistas continued.
In recent days, support bases of the Zapatista Army of National Liberation (EZLN ) from Comandante Abel and Unión Hidalgo communities were evicted from their land and dispossessed of their crops, by paramilitaries from the municipio of Sabanilla, openly protected by the State’s Public Security forces.
This land - a field of approximately 11 hectares sown with maize - was occupied by the paramilitaries on 6th September, they have "already handed everyone a piece of land. The invaders stole and harvested everything, left nothing and are now sowing beans" the Zapatista JBG denounced.
On September 8th, about 150 aggressors began firing bullets, until the situation was no longer bearable, so many people fled to the autonomous Zapatista community of San Marcos, which extends from Sabanilla towards Tabasco. Despite the danger, 22 men and five women who have no young children decided to remain to protect their land, animals, property and, above all, their life.
On 12th September, the JBG described the gravity of the situation through a communiqué: women and children had been displaced, and there were a total of 14 people missing from the new community of Comandante Abel and the nearby community of Unión Hidalgo.
The new community Comandante Abel is located on land which was recuperated by the EZLN in 1994. Until a few months ago, the population that lived there was living in the community of San Patricio, peacefully resisting multiple paramilitary attacks. Exactly one year ago, they were displaced because their lands were invaded by paramilitaries from Ostilucum, a nearby community. The community managed to return, but lost their crops. The threats of a new invasion and possible massacre increased, and the families of EZLN support bases made the decision to move to their previous land plot, known as "Lámpara". In spite of this, the threats continued, and on 6th September paramilitaries from Unión Hidalgo invaded the lands of the new community of Comandante Abel, letting off shots at the families, who fled to the mountain.
The attacks continued: on 16th October, paramilitaries fired shots until 3 am, the last of these happened [only] 150 metres away from the house of a support base. That night the gunfire started again, and the next day 15 public safety officers arrived at the scene.
On 24th October, reinforcements for the invaders arrived from Unión Hidalgo, who are now occupying the land taken from the support bases; and on the 25th, on the occupied land, "the paramilitaries, in three groups, carried out military-style movements bearing heavy weapons” and sent a commission to the police camp.
Every day the police patrol the area from Sabanilla to San Patricio, and during the evenings and nights, from San Patricio to the place occupied by the paramilitaries and to Unión Hidalgo. The invaders and police are virtually working as one. "It can be clearly seen that they are a single force" and that one single leadership "drives their actions". In a communiqué the JBG argues that the goal is that the police, "commanded" by President Felipe Calderón and Governor Juan Sabines Guerrero, "train the invaders". Also they belie the official statement, made on the 9th October, in which it states that groups from Unión Hidalgo and San Patricio requested the presence of the police, and that the rights of the members of the EZLN have been respected.
The reinforcing of the police, rather than removing the invaders from the Zapatistas' land, “promotes violence in order to impose their own regularization of the land", even though this land "has already been allocated to those who work it and live on it", states the JBG.
Since 2000, the support base families have rejected the government's welfare programmes. It was then that the threats from PRI supporters linked to the paramilitary group “Paz y Justicia” in their community started. A year ago the threats worsened. "They announced through loudspeakers that if they were not given the lands of Comandante Abel, they said we would be the ones to suffer, and they told us they were going to massacre us," they denounced from Chiapas.
For over 18 years, the Mexican government has waged a "low intensity" war against the Zapatista communities. Counterinsurgency plans, developed with the help of the United States after the armed uprising of the EZLN, created a framework that is still in operation today.
The message given by the Good Government Juntas in their communiqués is clear: the State supports the paramilitary groups, and, through manipulation, lies and promises of land and resources, encourages certain groups to take hostile and aggressive positions against those who resist and oppose being co-opted. In this way, welfare projects, implemented above all in areas where the people are in resistance, use counterinsurgency tactics called ‘soft line strategies’ to appease hunger, create dependency and discourage resistance.
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