The Michoacan community of Santa María de Ostula is under fire: armed attacks and drone attacks are reported

La comunidad michoacana de Santa María de Ostula, bajo fuego: se registran agresiones armadas y ataques con drones

The community of Santa María Ostula, belonging to the municipality of Aquila, in Michoacán, has been under fire since July 1 by alleged armed individuals from the Jalisco Nueva Generación Cartel.

Just four days ago the community celebrated the 15th anniversary of the recovery of the Xayakalan lands.

At the celebration, the self-defense forces of the Nahua community recalled how, through fire and blood, they expelled political parties and drug traffickers, achieving a relative period of peace, because they have continually faced criminal groups.

However, on July 1 “armed attacks returned” at the surveillance points of the Communal Guard and just 24 hours ago they were attacked with drones “as well as detonations of large-caliber weapons, in the hills surrounding the temporary authority of the Ostula Brotherhood.”

Through a statement, the Nahua community of Santa María Ostula recounted the events.

At 5:00 p.m., alleged members of the CJNG arrived in areas where civilians travel, and were repelled by the Communal Guard. The fight between the two groups was not limited to open areas, on the contrary, it took place between houses, the school, and so on.

“This time the CJNG attacked the civilian population without distinction and sent groups of around 50 criminals each to surround an unarmed population made up mainly of women, children and elderly people,” the statement explains.

The community of Santa María Ostula accuses the authorities of Michoacán of ignoring their situation, not addressing the emergency “and deactivating the criminal attack.”

The self-defense forces of Ostula blame these attacks, among others, the former leader Cemeí Verdía Zepeda, who just three days ago lost his daughter in an attack in the city of Colima.

The communal guards of Ostula, together with those of Aquila and Coahuayan, warned that they will continue their “actions to combat organized crime in the region,” and they also accused local authorities and military commanders of being behind the attacks.

Without military and police help, the self-defense forces of Santa María Ostula freed themselves from the Knights Templar.

On June 29, in the commemorative speech for the recovery of the lands of Xayakalan, the community recalled the “uncertainty, pain, and strength with which the community mobilized to recover their lands, which were planned to be used for large multimillion-dollar projects, in which we, indigenous Nahuas, were not included.”

Since then, the community reestablished “communal life,” there were classes in schools, they celebrated religious and family festivals, planting and harvesting was a matter of pride, and national and international tourism attracted by the care of turtles was growing.

“In the lands you now see, there used to be parties between criminals, people disappeared, people were murdered, boats loaded with drugs were unloaded, and now there are schools, churches, people work the land and enjoy nature. We eliminated projects of death and built projects of life,” he said.

Tranquility grew under the watchful eye of a Communal Guard that was deployed at various points to monitor the accesses to various communities and on numerous occasions managed to repel attempts at invasions by criminal groups.

Since then, attacks against this community have been constant; in the months of February, April and May they have faced aggressions allegedly from the CJNG