Sunday, February 25, 2024

13 massacred in Oaxaca in decades-old dispute over land

Thirteen people from a community in the Sierra of Oaxaca were killed, one was wounded and at least five are missing following a massacre by residents of a neighboring community yesterday.

The attack was allegedly perpetrated by residents of San Lucas Ixcotepec against their neighbors from Santa María Ecatepec in a land dispute that has been going on for years, said the Oaxaca Attorney General’s office.

Some 25 residents of Ecatepec had traveled to the disputed area in a truck to work on the land when they were ambushed, it said. The truck was set on fire and burned in the process.

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Attorney General Rubén Vasconcelos said there had been a resolution in favor of one of the two communities but the conflict continues regardless. They don’t accept the resolutions, he said of such disputes.

State police have assumed responsibility for security in the region with 43 officers.

Santa María Ecatepec has three outstanding conflicts with neighboring communities. That with Ixcotepec is over the ownership of 3,660 hectares of forest land. Another dispute is over 9,775 hectares and the third concerns 4,409.

State authorities say there are 364 such conflicts over land ownership outstanding.

Source: Milenio (sp), El Financiero (sp)

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