By: Charbell Lucio
Churumuco, Michoacán—The General Council of the Self-Defense Groups, led by Dr. José Mireles Valverde, attested on Sunday morning the armed uprising and the emergence of a new self-defense group in the municipality of Churumuco in Michoacán.
This occurs, just after December 20th when the leader of the self-defense movement in Michoacán said that the movement will continue to expand and that they’ll support all the municipalities in the state who want to “uprise” against organized crime.
It was on Sunday, with the presence of local leaders from Tepalcatepec, Buenavista and Aguililla, led by Mireles Valverde, when citizens of Churumuco gathered in the courtyard of the city hall where they were invited to join the newly formed self-defense group.
There, the doctor said that there are three other municipalities in sight: Huetamo, Nueva Italia and Apatzingán. Meanwhile in the long term they also contemplate to reach the state capital, Morelia.
Even though the governor, Fausto Vallejo, has previously said that the expansion of the self-defense movement will not be permitted, the leader assures that there is no will by the government to stop them, or to guarantee the safety of the people in arms.
Contrary to what is said by the governor, the phenomenon has spread to nearly 60 communities throughout dozens of municipalities in the Tierra Caliente region in Michoacán.
Churumuco, as well as Zicuirán and Chaus, villages of the municipality of La Huacana, and San Juan Nuevo of the municipality of Parangaricutiro, are the most recent or “the latest territories liberated of organized crime”.
To date, The list of municipalities liberated are: Buenavista Tomatlán, Tepalcatepec, Aguililla, Aquila, Coalcomán, Chinicuila, Los Reyes, Tancítaro, La Huacana, and Vista Hermosa. However, it is known that groups of armed civilians maintain their presence in at least three more municipalities where they are ready to uprise at any time.
In addition, the aim is to extend the movement to the municipalities of Apatzingán, Múgica, Nueva Italia, Ario de Rosales and Morelia.
Source: Revolución 3.0
How Churumuco Rose Up In Arms
By: Camila Luna
Churumuco, Michoacán— José Manuel Mireles Valverde and a group of Community Guards were preparing for a new uprising in arms. Behind them, a concrete arch welcomed them to the municipality of Churumuco, and on the other side, the barricades made out of sand bags protected the entrances of the town.
When it came time to accomplish the uprising of the new Community Guard, Mireles Valverde asked his companions to pose for a photo. “Let the background show, so they know that we are already in Churumuco, so the governor will say not a step more to the self-defense movement”, said the doctor to the cameras while they were being photographed.
In an interview, Mireles Valverde said that the uprising of the Michoacán towns won’t end in Churumuco, he noted that more municipalities remained to be “liberated from these degenerates”, as they refer to the criminals.
Nueva Italia, Huetamo and Ario de Rosales, Mireles said, asked for the support of the community police to form their own self-defense groups in response to widespread discontent by the abuses from criminal groups; support without a date set, says the doctor, will be brought to different places.
Without fearing the government warnings, that threaten to halt the advancement of the self-defense movement, Manuel Mireles said sharply that the Michoacán government has neither the capacity nor the desire to stop the emergence of more armed groups, and that the Michoacán government is contaminated by organized crime.
“They can’t get in; because they sold the positions that they have…those who command are organized crime, not the state government”.
After the impromptu photo shoot, the leader of the General Council of The Self-Defense Groups, got in a self-defense patrol vehicle, some with the words “Autodefensa de Zicuirán”, others with just a green ribbon hanging as a symbol that from now on, Churumuco will use to identify those who support the group.
In a convoy and after a few minutes, the community patrols stopped at the offices of the city hall of Churumuco. Manuel Mireles was the first to enter the basketball field, considered to be the most suitable location to give his discourse to the town.
Children, women, the elderly, and unarmed men were covering their faces; they responded the invitation from the coordinators of the self-defense groups and heard the message from the leader of the self-defense groups.
There, the General Counsel of the Citizens Council of the Self-Defense Group of Tepalcatepec encouraged the villagers to join the Community Guard and to take up arms to exterminate the criminal group that operates in that region.
Standing on the steps of the court, covering himself from the sun with a sombrero, and completely unarmed, Jose Mireles gave his speech of a Churumuco “free” from kidnappings, extortions, and executions; the most common crimes in the area, according to the leader of the self-defense groups.
Accompanied by the coordinators of the Community Guards of Tepalcatepec, Buenavista Tomatlán, Coalcomán and Aguililla, the doctor pledged his full support to the Self-Defense Groups in the Tierra Caliente region, while ensuring that the Army and Federal Police would also support the people who choose to create their own group.
Given the curious stares of the people who seemed to not understand what was going on, Mireles advised the villagers to conceal their weapons when passing a military checkpoint, not to hide, but as an act of respect for the authorities.
Before ending his speech, the community leader asked the people to raise their hands if they were willing to participate in the checkpoints, but only a young girl rose her hand, then came an awkward silence, and without further ado, another woman said: “If we came to this meeting it is because we are ready to join”. With those words, it showed the support from the villagers.
Thus Mireles and his people went to another village that morning that would also be liberated. Thirty minutes from Churumuco, neighbors from the tenancy of Poturo awaited the arrival of the Community Guards.
The elderly at the front sat on benches in the main square and up, at a kiosk, Mireles once again, invited the people to join the Self-Defense movement.
Source: Michoacán 3.0