AMERICA/MEXICO - Bishop's denunciation: exodus of the Tarahumaras indigenous due to violence

Friday, 17 November 2017 indigenous   drug trade   migrants   violence   politics  


Tarahuamara (Agenzia Fides) - The Tarahumaras and Tepehuanes Indigenous are leaving their lands because they no longer find the necessary conditions for living there: reports the parish priest of San José of Tarahumara, Fr. Manuel Granados. "There is an unstoppable exodus of families towards the city where an even bigger problem is being created, because the predestinated settlements have become inadequate", said the priest in a note sent to Fides.
"I am witness to the fact that the exodus rises because I see all the new settlements which accommodate twice the number people where there are problems concerning: overcrowding, health, housing, education, food and drug problems", continues father Granados, adding that there is a situation of emergency in indigenous urban settlements, where approximately 20,000 people live. El Oasis, El Pajaro Azul, Ladrillera Norte and La Soledad are the places where the major problems are the lack of resources and services.
Also the Bishop of the Diocese of Tarahumara, Mgr. Juan Manuel González Sandoval, M.N.M., launched the alarm: every day, on average, three indigenous families emigrate from the mountain communities, mainly because of insecurity, violence, expropriation of land and the destruction of the forest. The Bishop, appointed last April, reports that the problem has been growing for 8 years and has now become "a real emergency". Two days ago, Mgr. González Sandoval, during the Mexican Episcopate Assembly in Mexico City, denounced that the main cause of this exodus is "violence, especially the one caused by gangs".
The situation of the "Sierra" of the Tarahumara is becoming a much more serious emergency, as there are many ethnic groups present in this almost abandoned place in the Chihuahua department. The 63,000 sq. Km of rugged forest and land welcomes dozens of indigenous communities and centers, where the presence of the State is almost invisible. This raises the violence of the Narcos, who impose the transformation of crops and the recruitment of young people for criminal gangs, phenomena in which families prefer to flee. (CE) (Agenzia Fides, 17/11/2017)