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News > Latin America

EZLN-Backed Indigenous Congress Starts Second National Assembly

  • Spokeswoman Marichuy with the Totonaca people at Huehuetla, Puebla, during a CNI tour across Mexico. November 17, 2017.

    Spokeswoman Marichuy with the Totonaca people at Huehuetla, Puebla, during a CNI tour across Mexico. November 17, 2017. | Photo: instagram.com/raulfernandopl/

Published 11 October 2018

“Our path continues, and the main difference with previous phases is that now we’re more original peoples walking together."

The indigenous organizations that proposed an indigenous, revolutionary woman as a candidate for the past Mexican presidential elections are holding their second national assembly to decide on their next steps in the struggle.


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"We’re now more people, groups, collectives and organizations aiming to look in ourselves for the solutions that we know won’t come from up there,” says the press release signed by the National Indigenous Congress organizing committee.

The assembly, joined by indigenous communities from throughout the country, is taking place at the Indigenous Center for Integral Training-Earth University (Cideci-Unitierra) in San Cristobal de las Casas, Chiapas, south-east Mexico, between October 12 and 14.

In 2016, the National Indigenous Congress (CNI), an anti-capitalist discussion board for the indigenous peoples of Mexico backed by the Zapatista Army of National Liberation (EZLN), proposed the formation of an Indigenous Council of Government (CIG) and named a Nahuatl spokeswoman, known as ‘Marichuy,’ to run in the 2018 presidential elections as an independent candidate.

The idea was to place her at the center at the debate, not actually win the elections, as they explained, but they didn’t get the 866,000 signatures necessary to appear on the ballot. Other independent candidates did achieve it, even though the electoral authorities recognized most of their signatures were fake.

The CNI organized the second assembly to address the capitalist crisis.

“The capitalist war against mother earth, our people and all those below, grows every day, without getting other things but lies, exploitation, looting, disdain and repression from those up there, the capitalists and their overseers that unjustly rule Mexico and the world,” the statement reads.

On August 26, 2018, the CIG held an internal discussion session and agreed to call for a next national assembly between the council and the indigenous peoples that make up the CNI.

Only CNI delegates, CIG counselors, and those explicitly invited as observers will be able to participate. On the last day, members of support networks, organizations and registered sympathizers will also be welcomed to the plenary session.

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