Wednesday, December 06, 2006

Oaxaca, Mexico: Once again APPO demands suspension of arrests and release of prisoners; once again feds refuse.

Lots of rocket fire and bombs bursting in air all over the city for the last 3-4 hours. I don't know why. Checking.

During a 3 hour meeting with a delegation from the Seretary of the Interior (Segob), the APPO delegation demanded that all prisoners be released, including Flavio Sosa, and all arrests be stopped. Once again Segob refused. Once again, APPO referred to the meeting as "negotiations". Once again, Segob called it "talks". The APPO delegation consisted of 4 members, Erangelio Mendoza, Zenén Bravo, attorney Gilberto Hernández Santiago and a human rights advocate, Yésica Sánchez Maya. The group will meet again on Friday.

The only guarantee that APPO could get was that members of their delegation would get safe conduct. Hilariously, they immediately produced a list of 10 for the Friday meeting. I'm sure that with the safe passage guarantee the delegate list will quickly grow to thousands and future meetings will have to be held in Estadio Azteca, which seats 105,000.

The APPO delegation conceded that their principal demand, the removal of Governor Ruiz Ortiz, would no longer be a stumbling block to further talks. Appo reproached the government for the arrests of Flavio Sosa and the other leaders while turning a blind eye to so-called state "death convoys" which APPO claimed were responsible for the murders of "dozens" of APPO followers. Segob responded that if APPO had any evidence to support this allegation, they should produce it and Segob would launch investigations.

Segob spokesman Mario Escárcega pretty much laid out the bottom line when he said,
We can't talk about any negotiation, better a dialog, and on that issue we diverge.
I think APPO is discovering to its chagrin that it is dealing with a fresh bunch who aren't going to tolerate any crap.

What this fresh bunch decides to do about the rotten state of Denmark down here remains to be seen. There are other states just as rotten or more rotten and Oaxaca may not be at the top of anyone's list right now in Mexico City There is probably more money stolen from inside the Mexico City government in a month than can be purloined from Oaxaca state in a year. The federal government may have no viable option other than to firmly clamp down on the anarchy and violence here until it has the time and resources to come down here and start a cleanup.

Get in line, Oaxaca.

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