Note: If you are unfamiliar with this "concentration camp" in Ciudad Juarez and the unthinkable human rights violations taking place there, go to the following sources for info:
- Article by Gloria Muñoz (Spanish)
- 8-minute interview with Father Bill Morton (audio)
- Full version (20 min) version of the interview with Father Bill Morton (audio)
- 15-min documentary (audio - Spanish)
Many of you are familiar with the land dispute in Lomas del Poleo in which two men have been murdered, two children burned to death and in which the Zaragozas and their surrogates continue to use violence, terror and even kidnapping to remove the residents from this piece of land right on the Mexico/New Mexico border.
Please copy/paste the English and Spanish version of the letter below, and sign with your name, city/state and email to the email addresses noted below. Please personalize, sign it. Please invite anyone in your network of friends, families, civic, church and other groups to do the same. We would like to inundate Chihuahua Governor Reyes Baeza with messages soliciting his intervention to stop the violence and mediate a just, peaceful solution.
Please send the e-mails to the following addresses related to the Governor/State Government Offices. (If you can't activate by clicking, cut and paste or type into your e-mail "send to"). If you are willing to do something more, like fax, call or send surface mail copy of your letter, there is a link for information at the bottom of this message.
Copy to: firstname.lastname@example.org (Nuestras Hijas de Regreso a Casa - human rights organization)
This action is more urgent than ever. In the last two weeks four more homes have been demolished, two elderly residents have been kidnapped and tortured by the Mexican military, and the residents’ access to water and electricity continues to be denied. A deep ditch has been dug around the elementary school house making it difficult for the students and their families to gain entry. The teachers are frequently absent, now, due to escalating violence and attempts by Zaragoza surrogates to close the school and force the families to go to another school in the relocation area.
On Saturday a small group of the Lomas del Poleo Alliance of Las Cruces met with New Mexico Governor, Bill Richardson, who indicated he would be willing to intervene since the disputed land, literally, borders on his state of New Mexico. Lomas del Poleo is also in the path of a proposed multi-billion dollar, bi-national development plan involving major business figures from both sides of the border, as well as government officials from New Mexico and Chihuahua.
Thank you for your solidarity on behalf of the human rights of the residents of Lomas del Poleo.
More addesses and phone numbers.
[The letter in Spanish follows; the English version is further down]
Sr. José Reyes Baeza
Gobernador del Estado de Chihuahua, México.
Debido a la escalada de violencia desatada en las últimas semanas en contra de los habitantes de la parte alta de la colonia Granjas Lomas del Poleo, por parte de trabajadores al servicio de Pedro y Jorge Zaragoza Fuentes, le solicitamos su inmediata intervención para que las autoridades correspondientes garanticen la seguridad de los vecinos de esa colonia. Asimismo, le urgimos ordene a la Procuraduría de Justicia del Estado la inmediata investigación de los delitos cometidos en esa zona, los cuales han sido oportunamente denunciados ante esa representación.
Como debe ser de su amplio conocimiento, las tierras de la Colonia Granjas Lomas del Poleo están sujetas a una disputa legal que se dirime -- a través de distintas demandas en el Tribunal Unitario Agrario Número Cinco--, por lo que le solicitamos, también, obligue a los empresarios Zaragoza Fuentes respeten los tiempos de la ley y detengan inmediatamente la campaña de presión y hostigamiento que han levantado en contra de los vecinos en Lomas del Poleo. Es obvio que lo que pretenden estos dos empresarios es obligar a los colonos a que abandonen sus tierras, antes de que los tribunales competentes rindan su fallo final.
En suma, Sr Gobernador, lo único que le pedimos es que haga cumplir la ley y restaure el Estado de derecho en la colonia Lomas del Poleo.
(Your name, title, city, state)
English Version of Letter:
Honorable Jose Reyes Baeza
Governor of the State of Chihuahua
Republic of Mexico
Owing to the escalation of violence in recent weeks against the inhabitants of the Colonia of Lomas del Poleo by the employees of the brothers, Jorge and Pedro Zaragoza, we are asking your immediate intervention so that the appropriate authorities might guarantee the security of the residents in this Colonia. Also we urge that you order the State Attorney General's office to immediately investigate the crimes committed in this area which have already been presented to the Attorney General.
As you well know the lands in Lomas del Poleo are the subject of a legal dispute in the Agrarian Court Number Five in Chihuahua so we are also asking you to oblige the Zaragozas to respect the law and immediately stop the campaign of oppression and harassment against the inhabitants of Lomas del Poleo. It is obvious that these two businessmen are trying to get the inhabitants to abandon their lands before the courts make their decision.
In short, Mr. Governor we only ask that the law be followed and restored.
(Your name, title, city, state, country)