Eleven women and nine children living in the resistance encampment in the zócalo of Oaxaca, informed the press today of the dissolution of the autonomous community, and the initiation of a hunger strike to demand that the state government stop the violence in San Juan Copala.
The twenty people, 11 women and nine children declared the hunger strike (sic, but only eight children are named). Among the children participating are: Moctezuma Velasco, three years old; Marlet Violeta de Jesús Martínez, two years old ; Neydi Odeth de Jesús Martínez, six; Nayla Heidi Velasco Martínez, seven; Maurilio Martínez Martínez, five; Gustavo Cruz Ramírez, twelve; Marco Martínez Martínez, eight, and Ofelia Martínez Martínez, twelve.
Oaxaca contains 2,440 autonomous communities. San Juan Copala declared itself autonomous in January, 2007 but its status as such was never recognized. Instead, the governor of Oaxaca Ulises Ruiz Ortiz has been repeatedly named as responsible for the two paramilitary groups which carried out the approximately twenty deaths, among them several women and children, along with beating, rapes and disappearances. Also murdered were two human rights activists on a caravan to try to bring supplies to the besieged town. The caravan was turned back.
Reports of the events at San Juan Copala in the last week can be found here: