Europe South Asia Asia Pacific Americas Middle East Africa BBC Homepage World Service Education



Front Page

World

UK

UK Politics

Business

Sci/Tech

Health

Education

Sport

Entertainment

Talking Point
On Air
Feedback
Low Graphics
Help

Monday, June 8, 1998 Published at 13:36 GMT 14:36 UK


World: Americas

Mexico's peace mediators resign

A Zapatista rebel patrol

Efforts to bring peace to southern Mexico are facing collapse, with peace mediators resigning in frustration at what they see as government intransigence.

The group of mediators, led by the Roman Catholic church, has decided to step down, criticising the government's military campaign in Chiapas state and its refusal to meet the demands of left-wing Zapatista rebels.

The leader of the commission, Bishop Samuel Ruiz, said the government had chosen a strategy in which the mediators could play no part. He also condemned what he called government aggression against the church - saying priests had been arrested and churches defiled by security forces.


[ image: The situation of the indigenous people of Chiapas has fuelled the Zapatista rebellion]
The situation of the indigenous people of Chiapas has fuelled the Zapatista rebellion
The commission has been seeking a solution to the conflict for four years, but it is now more than a year since the two sides last met. The BBC Mexico correspondent says the mediating commission's demise is the clearest sign so far that the peace process is now in total disarray.

In a written statement, the commission criticised the government's military campaign in Chiapas and its refusal to meet rebel demands.

The mediating commission's decision to disband closely followed the resignation of Bishop Ruiz from his position as chair. In a Sunday homily to his parishoners, the bishop said he no longer felt able to mediate between the government and the Zapatistas, who took up arms in 1994.

The Catholic Church in Chiapas has often been at odds with the government, which has accused the bishop and his colleagues of supporting the rebels and advocating violence.



Advanced options | Search tips




Back to top | BBC News Home | BBC Homepage | ©




Africa | Americas | Asia-Pacific | Europe | Middle East | South Asia


Relevant Stories

24 Dec 97 | Background
Mexico's peasant revolt





Internet Links

Zapatista links

Mexican Government: report on the Chiapas conflict (in Spanish)


The BBC is not responsible for the content of external internet sites.




In this section

From Business
Microsoft trial mediator appointed

Safety chief deplores crash speculation

From Entertainment
Taxman scoops a million

Violence greets Clinton visit

Bush outlines foreign policy

Boy held after US school shooting

Memorial for bonfire dead

Senate passes US budget

New constitution for Venezuela

North Korea expels US 'spy'

Hurricane Lenny abates

UN welcomes US paying dues

Chavez praises 'advanced' constitution

In pictures: Castro strikes out Chavez

WTO: arbitration in EU-Ecuador banana dispute

Colombian army chief says rebels defeated

Colombian president lambasts rebels