Indigenous Organization CODEDI Forms Community Self-Defense Forces (Oaxaca, Mexico)

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(This communique comes from the Indigenous organization CODEDI. It speaks to the formation of community police forces in response to the recent assassinations of their members at the hands of the narco-state. With this, the communities that make up CODEDI follow in the footsteps of various communities in Guerrero and Michoacán in taking security into their own hands, pursuing self and territorial defense against state and capitalist violence).

To the Peoples of Mexico and the World
To the Free and Paid Media
To the Social and Civil Organizations
To the National and International Human Rights Organizations

On July 17th, 2018, in Salchi, Pochutla, a group of five people dressed in military gear, in a truck with another person on a motorcycle, kidnapped our compañero Abraham Hernández González, who was a local coordinator of CODEDI. Hours afterwards, he was found dead 400 meters away with clear signs of torture and what seemed to be a death blow. With these acts, we again denounce the way in which the narco-state functions through violence. We hold directly responsible the three levels of government and all of the police forces for their complicity with organized crime groups resulting in the death and disappearance of hundreds of thousands of Mexicans throughout the country. That day, ten minutes after the kidnapping, police forces were informed of the act and not one responded, in spite of having elements mobilized a few kilometers away from where our compañero was kidnapped. As such, they have shown that they work hand in hand with those responsible for the kidnapping and assassination, covering up and helping them escape.

Proof of this cooperation was made evident in the events that took place on February 12th, in which three compañeros of CODEDI were assassinated. Five months later the state continues refusing to provide a response to the assassinations, let alone advances in the investigation.

As Indigenous peoples, they leave us no other option than to organize ourselves. Since ancestral times the communities have held security in the hands of their people. The community police or Topiles were responsible for maintaining peace in the communities. Before these acts, the communities of CODEDI have decided to take charge of our own security creating community police forces beginning today.

With this, we will no longer permit unknown people to continue violating, kidnapping and assassinating our communities, creating a climate of insecurity, making possible the plunder of natural resources and the dispossession of territories with megaprojects backed by the institutions of the government and organized crime.

We know that the law is on our side since Mexico is a signatory of the international treaties that give us the right to the earth, a home, territory, work, freedom and security.

We call on all the levels of government to respect the organization and free self-determination of the peoples, because the governments have already demonstrated their total incompetence. Since the arrival of Alejandro Murat to government, the doors have been opened to organized crime, creating the conditions allowing them to violate the rule of law throughout the state of Oaxaca.

We ask the social organizations, collectives, free media and unions to join, show your solidarity with, and support CODEDI, and that you be attentive to whatever retaliation from the police forces and the criminal groups that make up the narco-state.

For the defense of our rights and territories, not one step back!

Committee for the Defense of Indigenous Rights, CODEDI
Training Center CODEDI, Ex-Finca Alemania
Santa María Huatulco
July 20th, 2018

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