support to independant medias and APPO (Popular Assembly from People of Oaxaca) sign now

International Request (translated from a French text)

Mr Mexican Ambassador in Paris,
Mr Mexican Prime Minister

Last May, in the State of Oaxaca, in the South of Mexico, the teachers started a struggle to improve their wages terms. Following the repression triggered by the Oaxaca government on June 14th, this movement, although originally limited to corporate claim, has spread now to other sectors leading to a large popular and social movement (APPO-Popular Assembly of Oaxaca People). APPO has been demanding for over six months the dismissal of the governor of the State of Oaxaca, Ulises Ruнz Ortiz (member of PRI- International Revolutionary Party).

The people of this region, one of the most indigenous and poor of the country, cry out "enough! to the corruption, exploitation and injustice they suffer on a daily basis.

In the last months, the conflict has become harsher until the recent intervention of National Mexican Police who violently threw out the pickets and camps of APPO.

Since the conflict has started, at least 20 people have been murdered, hundreds of demonstrators have been arrested and regrettably, tens of people are missing. Organisations of the Human Rights Defence have already revealed tortures, physical abuses and threats that confined people have been suffering, as well as persecutions and ill-treatment of the police and paramilitary groups.

The international opinion is working around these serious events to denounce the abuses committed and find an outcome through dialogue.

Our audiovisual NGO tends to promote the duty of cinema and indigenous video as well as independent media that have broadcasted the information on the Resistance movements and have achieved breaking the international media silence:
In the last ten years, the cinema and indigenous video have developed. They offer a decent voice to visions, struggles, knowledge and culture of indigenous people.
The first Centre of Indigenous Video emerged in Oaxaca in 1994. This institution has introduced workshops where over six hundred people got training between 1994 and 2000.

Actually, there are over two hundred indigenous video productions done in Oaxaca. They are documentary videos on indigenes customs and traditions, struggle for the land and demand the recognition of their rights. Using the video on self-representation processes, we have emphasized its usefulness to strengthen the identity and the indigenous peoples struggle, its need to have audiovisual files protecting the natives memory and saving it for the future, as well as the importance of having the communication means to reflect our cultural diversity, our country strength.
Work is our productions leitmotiv and it articulates the representation of our communities. This basis is where we start from to value our peoples image.

Ojo de Agua

Ojo de Agua Comunicaciуn (Water Eye Communication), an audiovisual organisation, guarantees the support and promotion of the communication projects of indigenous communities, thanks to the production and coverage of video films.
Relaying from the independent media, Indymйdia from Oaxaca, Chiapas and Mexico, Ojo de Agua has come out as a producers group able to give the world evidence of the events.
We have exposed their films through renowned festivals such as:
Amiens, Toulouse, Lussas, Paris, to the Scam. The world sight they offer is a great treasure. Their films and now acknowledged singularity amazed all over. These films represent an immutable memory for their people and for human race.
Ojo de Agua is now in danger. Persecutions and accusations of crimes are upon its members who live terrified.

We, the undersigned, break the official media silence on the repression, impunity, arbitrariness and police brutality being carried out against the popular and indigenous movement in the city of Oaxaca:
- Over one hundred and fifty missing people;
- Over three hundred people confined in jails several thousands of kilometres away from Oaxaca;
- Over five hundred arrest warrants against the Human Rights Defenders, community authorities, heads of independent media and any person who is part of the experience of regional self-government urban and rural of Oaxaca

We demand to:

- The whole truth on missing people and the opening of an international investigation;
- releasing all political prisoners, unjustly arrested;
- stopping torture at once;
- quashing all the arrest warrants vis-а-vis the people who were part of this social movement;
- stopping at once the call to denouncing.
- the dissolution at once of paramilitary groups, disgraceful in democracy ;
- arresting at once the identified murderers of the reporters Bradley Will and Francisco Flores Salanueva, as well as the aggressors armed against the 12 independent filmmakers who got brutal beatings in the last six months ;
- lifting the siege to Oaxaca together with the immediate withdrawal of the Preventive Federal Police;
- the democratic respect for freedom of speech, communication and free movement of people;
- We claim for all members of the indigenous video movement not to be troubled and have their job respected;
- for the members of Ojo de Agua and Indymйdia not to be pursued by the police and to be protected from paramilitary acts;
- for the freedom of reporting to be respected.
We strongly reject how the Mexican government is criminalizing the fair demands of APPO and the indigenous people.
We declare our solidarity and our total support for all who fight in Oaxaca for a fair and noble cause.

The Group ALTERDOC and

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