SIPAZ Activities (July – October 1999)


12 March 1996: Due to the constant social pressure, Rubén Figueroa Alcocer resigns as governor, halfway through his term, claiming that he “wanted to help with the Aguas Blancas investigation being carried out by the Supreme Court (SCJN).”

12 April 1996: the Supreme Court (SCJN) presents its report on the Aguas Blancas massacre, in which it confirms the responsibility of the ex-governor, the ex-Secretary of State, and the ex-Attorney General, among others. However neither the Attorney General of the Republic (PGR) nor the Superior Justice Tribunal (TSP) follow through on the Supreme Court’s findings.

14 June 1996: the State Attorney General of Guerrero declares that eh ex-governor and his principal collaborators “did not participate directly, indirectly, or in the planning of the crimes committed”.

28 June 1996: an armed group known as the Revolutionary Popular Army (Ejército Popular Revolucionario, or EPR) makes its first public apparition during the commemoration of the Aguas Blancas massacre. About one hundred armed and masked men and women make public their “Manifesto of Aguas Blancas,” in which they declare that “institutionalized violence” is as present as it was when Lucio Cabañas Barrientos and Genaro Vázquez Rojas took up arms against exploitation and oppression: “In the face of institutionalized violence, armed struggle is a legitimate and necessary recourse for the people to reclaim their sovereignty and re-establish their rights guaranteed by the State.” One of the EPR’s principal demands is justice. On June 28, during the night, an armed confrontation takes place between a group of EPR members and state judicial police in Zumpango del Río. Three police officers are wounded.

The EPR is involved in various armed conflicts in Guerrero. The group disseminates the aims of its movement through visits to communities, opening up direct dialogue with community members. The federal government responds to the appearance of the EPR by persecuting members of social and political organizations (particularly the OCSS and the PRD). The government decides to fight the EPR with the Army, changing the principal military commands in Guerrero in order to bring back generals who had been involved in the persecution of the guerrilla movement during the 1970s in the state. The level of militarization increases visibly.

22 December 1996: Army troops disarm two groups of Community Police in San Luis Acatlán.