Mexico: San Quintín Workers Attacked by State Police


Workers from San Quintín have denounced a violent repression that occurred this morning by state police in Baja California. Local media reports that 20 patrols and a riot vehicle entered the homes without authorization of day laborers in Valley San Quintín and assaulted men, women and children. Reports say there are 70 injured, several serious.

The workers in San Quintín are mainly indigenous groups and have been protesting several months for salary increases and better working conditions. La Jornada reports that early this morning, state police raided Nuevo San Juan Copala and assaulted agricultural workers. Around 5am, the time when workers are preparing to go to work, police entered their homes without any rallies or protests in the area. Workers have been preparing for a boycott due to the lack of response to their labor demands from the Interior Ministry.

“State police entered his house and fired rubber bullets at a minor.”

Fidel Gabriel Sanchez, a spokesman of the labor movement of San Quintín, stressed that agribusiness led to the state police in order to avoid the boycott initiated by the dissatisfied workers due to lack of responses of the Interior Ministry. Yesterday workers decided to install a sit-in in front of San Quintín government offices.

In a statement, he said officers fired on laborers and after shooting two workers dead, who have not yet been identified, at least five detainees are reported.

ALSO READ: Mexico: Labor Rebellion in San Quintín‬ – Farmworkers on Strike

In the following video uploaded to facebook, one of the workers denounced that as he was filming the police with his phone, they threw him on the ground like a delinquent, beat him and took his phone. He said there is evidence on his phone that the state police initiated the aggression today.

Posted by Luis Alberto Garcia Avendano on Saturday, May 9, 2015

The violence occurred a few hours after the Undersecretary of the Interior, Luis Miranda Nava canceled his participation in negotiations that the government is holding with the agricultural workers of San Quintín, arguing that he did not have transportation to the location where the talks are being held.

“Estaban Santiago Martínez, assaulted by the state police in San Quintin.”

Additional video uploaded to youtube showing rubber rubber bullets and used cartridges on the floor of houses as well as citizens who were injured in the head by rubber bullets while in their homes.

An image uploaded to facebook appears to show the riot vehicle that entered San Quintín this morning possibly has not quite left the area.

“Workers shut the way on transpeninsular highway.”

“The police station of la colonia Vicente Guerrero in San Quintin”

“More than 2,000 people protesting in #SanQuintin, reporting 6 injured.”

You can follow #SanQuintín on twitter for updates.

La Jornada

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Erin Gallagher is a multimedia artist, translator and writer for Revolution News.