Reporting on the Mexican Cartel Drug War

Officials Reject Zapatista Role in Mexican Politician’s Abduction

Monday, January 3, 2011 |

A Mexican congressional commission issued a statement Monday “categorically” rejecting any attempt to blame the Zapatista National Liberation Army, or EZLN, for last year’s kidnapping of former presidential candidate Diego Fernandez de Cevallos.

Known as Cocopa, the Commission of Concord and Pacification was created in March 1995 to mediate between the government and the Zapatistas, who mounted a brief uprising in the southern state of Chiapas in January 1994.

In a communique published by capital daily La Jornada, Cocopa chair Jose Narro demanded an “exhaustive investigation” of a message that appeared over the weekend purporting to claim responsibility for the Fernandez de Cevallos kidnapping on behalf of the EZLN.

The Chiapas state government likewise dismissed the idea of Zapatista involvement in the abduction.

“If the EZLN has sent a message to the country in these times of violence, it has been that of prudence, peace and political responsibility,” Chiapas Gov. Juan Sabines said on Twitter.

The claim of responsibility sent Saturday to Efe and other media outlets was signed by “El Guerrero Balam,” who claims to be a “loyal member of the EZLN insurgent forces” and an associate of a group itself the Global Transformation Network.

The signer describes himself as a subordinate of Zapatista spokesman Subcomandante Marcos and calls Fernandez de Cevallos, the 1994 presidential candidate of the now-governing rightist National Action Party, or PAN, “one of the main enemies” of EZLN efforts to secure autonomy for indigenous peoples.

Cocopa chairman Narro said he suspects Saturday’s message was the work of people seeking to prepare the ground for “a repressive escalation against the EZLN.”

He noted that the Zapatistas, who have eschewed violence since their initial rebellion 17 years ago, now devote their energies to “organization and community work” in Chiapas, where the EZLN Good Government Boards have become a standard “in the matter of collective work and communitarian social accomplishments.”

The Web site Enlace Zapatista (Zapatista Connection), operated by the EZLN and its allies, denied any involvement in the Fernandez de Cevallos case and said that kidnappings are contrary to the group’s principles.

Fernandez de Cevallos, who disappeared May 14 from his La Cabaña ranch near San Clemente, in the central Mexican state of Queretaro, was released last month after his family paid a $30 million ransom.

The captors of the 69-year-old politician sent a handful of e-mails to Mexican media outlets in which they referred to themselves as the “Misteriosos Desaparecedores” (Mysterious Disappearers), although in their last message they called themselves the Global Transformation Network, one of the affiliations claimed by El Guerrero Balam.

In comments after his release, Fernandez de Cevallos said both political and financial factors were involved in his kidnapping.

“They considered me a man who was an enemy of their causes,” he told Radioformula.

Fernandez de Cevallos has been one of the most powerful figures in the PAN and Mexican politics in the past two decades.

Known for his fiery oratory, “Boss Diego” was a member of the lower house of Congress from 1991 to 1994 and a senator from 2000 to 2006.

He also runs a successful law firm that has represented both Mexico’s blue-chip corporations and reputed drug kingpins.

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15 Borderland Beat Comments:

Anonymous said...

Speaking of the Zapatistas, al jazeera currently has a feature about their present situation titled- 'Zapatistas: The war with no breath?'

here is a brief excerpt from it...

'With much fanfare and relief, the Mexican government and the Zapatistas signed the San Andres Accords in 1996, designed to bring peace to the region by dealing with root causes of the conflict.

The government, however, never implemented the accords. "The Zapatistas decided to stop the negotiations due to a lack of political will," says Miguel Alvarez, a former member of the national commission for negotiation, who worked closely with the Catholic Church in mediating between the Zapatistas and the government.

The Mexican military maintained a large force in the area during this period with harassment - including well-documented rapes and killings by the military or paramilitary allies of large land-owners.'

the full commentary can be found at


Anonymous said...


Smurf said...

I will say this much:

Don Diego knows EXACTLY who kidnapped him.

Whoever did it, it wasn't your typical abduction for ransom money. I don't know if it was the ELZN, but it certainly wasn't a ragtag group that did this.

Anonymous said...

This was a setup.. Come on open your eyes people.

Anonymous said...

The EZLN is being setup and some seem to be falling for it as usual.*sigh*

Such a kidnapping would be completely against the principles of the Zapatista beliefs. Nothing would be gained from it, except bad press.

The kidnapping may have been carried out by the EPR who is another leftist group. In any case it would be justified as the Mexican government can't turn up several EPR members who were detained and presumed executed by the Mexican government.

Buela said...

Mexico's most oppressed people..they ask for so little; the freedom to co-exist in relative autonomy to preserve their culture. I ask myself "why? why can't Zapas be given the autonomy the US gives its native americans?"
Why are private schools allowed to operate throughout Mx, yet Zapas autonomous schools are condemed and destroyed?

an attack by the feds...;
170 Zapas driven from their homes
homes burned/destroyed..
the offense? building an autonomous school

another attack:
Pamala: a compa from Pamala thrown into prison, in an attempt to abandon school construction project

another attack;
29 acres of land seized; 6000 coffee trees, 10 acre maize, homes destroyed, cattle, horses, and destoryed a banana plantation.
this also relatiation for building autonomous schools.

Lest you think these events occurred in the uprising of the 90s...think again...these examples I have provided of the violence against the Zapas? From August 24 to September 9...2010.

One would think the Mx governemnt had bigger issues to contend with...e.g. the DTOs, than to harrass the indigenous people.

Little media coverage, unless one researches on their own.

so do I think the Zapas are behind the Diego kidnapping? I think it is a possibilty, but a slim one. I would offer the Zapas have enough contention as it is. Then again, something about Diego I found different. I mentioned that when he was released. and the fact that he seems kinder, refusing to name his captors or condem them. I think that period of time being up close and personal with oppresed captors could change a person...becomming one with the captors?

I can say with certainty if they have 30M they sure are not spending it on anything apparent to the naked eye. They are a poor struggling people.

I still intend to go forth with building schools in the caracoles of the Zapatistas. If I was certain they were involved in this type of activity I would not.

Matanzas said...

EZLN is only concerned with Chiapas. Altough the elegant and erudite rhetoric in the communication from “Los ex misteriosos desaparecedores” sounds like Subcomandante Marcos' I don't see any reason for EZLN to go on that route. Sounds more like a feud between oligarchs, or it could be a way for EPR to come back in play with fresh funding.
As usual some PRI/PAN crooks try to push the blame on the little Maya guys. Easy victims.

ajulio said...

i believe that this was done for money. seems like everything in mexico is done for money. money is usually the root of all evil.




"lito "brito said...

yeah the gob can sure kick ass on these folks

to bad they are not so effective on the narcos

and ERNIE...where you to kick the MEXICAN gobs ass...

got both feet up the ass of the USA govt?

Anonymous said...

Brito, I always tell folk that the Mexican government from way back even to the days of the PRI ruling all lonesome like, that it is an allied puppet government of the US. That means that it is CORRUPT< CORRUPT< CORRUPTED! The two governments are connected together at the hip, Brito.


''lito'brito said...

@ ernie

they are ALL connected at the hip...or more better the back pocket

any country who has a central banking system ...and who is in perpetual debt is just a pawn of the money men

and that is pretty much every one except N korea ..Iran..maybe Zimbabwe...maybe two or three more

our country is their sword arm....look at the symbol on the US marine know the star...

that speaks volumes...need i even say AIPAC

Layla2 said...

The Eagle, Globe and Anchor--
Symbol of the Corps. The Eagle, Globe and Anchor emblem has been part of the uniform since 1868 and became the official emblem of the Marine Corps in 1955.

The eagle with spread wings represents our proud nation. The globe points to worldwide presence. The anchor stands for naval tradition. Together, they represent a dedication to service in the air, on land
and at sea.

The Eagle, Globe and Anchor emblem is presented to recruits at the end of Recruit Training, symbolizing that they have earned the title "United States Marine."

P.S. I am a traditionalist, I love this country, I love the freedom it stands for. I'm not saying we are perfect. But as long as we are proud of our heritage and willing to fight for it--we will remain strong--all the people that make up this country.

Point? Find a symbol of Mexican heroism, stand up for it, be proud, cherish freedom, seek to make a difference.

''lito'brito said...

@ Layla2

right on ...

and i want to say here that in no way when i say our country is the sword arm ..and refer to the star on the marine dress sword , that i am in any way saying any thing bad about the USMC or any of our armed forces or our country...i am just saying we are being used to fight battles that are not our own

our blood is spilled for the profit of hidden money men who want to kill and rob the entire planet

our country is not perfect ..but it is the only on we have ..and what other country accepts so many other people

we must believe in our goodness , and stand for what is good ...

what is the alternative? ...turn out the lights and give in to chaos

like Mexico has done for so long

Layla2 said...

Of course...and I want you to know that I have been most impressed with your insight, you and Buela's, all this time I've been reading BB. Some others that don't have reference names. I agree it's time for us to become recognized "faces" on this blog. Sorry it's taken me so long to get mine.

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