By Prof. JOSE MARIA SISON
Chairperson, International League of Peoples’ Struggle
The International Coordinating Committee and all member-organizations of the International League of Peoples’ Struggle (ILPS) hereby condemn the massacre in Mexico of seventy-two (72) migrant workers from various countries of Latin America and demand a thoroughgoing investigation and the rendering of justice to the hapless victims.
The barbaric crime was committed in Tamaulipas, Mexico near the US border on August 23-24 in Rancho San Fernando. Among the murdered migrant workers are 21 from Honduras, 16 from El Salvador, 6 from Guatemala, 5 or 6 from Ecuador and 1 or 2 from Brazil. An Ecuadorian survivor claims 76 migrants as victims. Other survivors include 1 Honduran in the custody of Mexican authorities, 1 Salvadoran in the custody of US immigration authorities and 1 Honduran who reportedly has gone back to Honduras.
Tamaulipas is the most militarized region in Mexico. It has the largest ground Mexican troops and the most numerous roadblocks. The high degree of militarization is financed through the US Merida Initiative, which is patterned after Plan Colombia and includes Colombian military and security advisors and trainors. The purpose of the militarization is supposedly to carry out a war against the drug trade and also to prevent migrant workers from crossing from Mexico to the US.
More than 60,000 migrants disappeared during the last five years and more than 10,000 migrants disappeared within a period of six months in 2009. These are borne out by investigations and reports by various concerned entities such as Mexico’s National Human Rights Commission, Amnesty International, Diocese of Saltillo, Miguel Agustin Pro Human Rights Center, Catholic Church’s network of migrant shelters and rights defenders, and the independent researcher Father Nieto.
Surviving migrants and the mothers and families of disappeared migrants have made multiple testimonies which have found their way into media reports, investigative reporting, books and documentaries since 2007.
Tamaulipas has become a notorious field of forced disappearances, massacres and unmarked graves. It is a trap devised by the US imperialist government and the Mexican government for disappearing and murdering the migrant workers who desperately try to enter the US after losing their means of livelihood in their countries of origin under the ruthless US policy of neoliberal globalization.