Today, May 4, 2009, the Other Campaign New York took over the Mexican Consulate in New York to demand the liberation of the 12 political prisoners who have been brutally repressed for resisting neoliberal urbanization projects that are destructive to human life and culture, specifically the construction of an airport in Atenco, and for protecting displaced flower vendors in Texcoco.
Today, on this third anniversary of the repression, the arrests, the violations, the torture, and the breaking and entering made by the military police in Atenco, a delegation of members of Movement for Justice in El Barrio succeeded in entering the offices of the Consulate of Mexico in New York despite the fact that these offices have been under strict and tightened security since precisely 3 years ago when Mexicans of The Other Campaign New York with real heart and memory, demanded the liberation of the political prisoners of Atenco. We succeeded in entering the offices to hold a non-violent protest demanding the immediate release of the prisoners of Atenco.
Once inside, the compañer@s of the Other Campaign New York, amongst the clamor of: “Freedom for political prisoners (Presos politicos, libertad)!, Liberty, liberty, to those prisoners for fighting (Libertad, libertad, a los presos por luchar)!, We are all Atenco (Todos Somos Atenco)!”, along with other chants, and with our signs, some with prison bars to look like a cell, and also with bandanas, gave out to our fellow country men and women at the Consulate DVD’s of the video “Breaking the Siege”, about the repression in Atenco, and informational flyers where we explain our main demands.
Later, we demanded to speak with the consul Ruben Beltran in order to give him a letter of demands. First, they told us that he was not there because he was in Mexico, but we knew that this was a lie, since the day before the consul was in El Barrio at an event proselytizing for PAN during the imposed Cinco de Mayo celebration.
After a while, the authorities of the Consulate told us that the Consul was in New York but that he could not be found in the Consulate, and they closed consular services to the public, asking all of their clients to abandon the offices. By the end of our action, the consul arrived. We gave him a giant size letter on a poster-board with the following
1. Liberty for the political prisoners in Atenco.
2. Cancel the arrest warrants for those 2 who are being persecuted.
3. Revoke and appeal the sentences.
4. Complete respect for the human rights of the detained and the persecuted.
5. Punishment for those responsible for the violations of human rights.
The consul, Rubén Beltrán, first told us that he was open to engage in dialogue with all Mexican people in New York and listen to all opinions, but then blamed us – and our cause, the liberation of the prisoners in Atenco – for having closed the services of the Consulate and for having left so many people unattended.