Chivis Martinez Borderland Beat La Silla Rota
“The CJNG now also includes
children on its blacklist: grenade launchers and rifles are pointed at them.” (CJNG has never established boundaries, children
were never off limits)
There are already about 90
families from the Michoacán Sierra de la Tierra Caliente who have had to
abandon their homes and heritage to avoid being assassinated by cells of the Cartel
Jalisco Nueva Generación aka CJNG who residents
say are “excessively paranoid.”
The families flee so as not to be
burned, beheaded or dismembered alive.
The CJNG now also includes
children on its blacklist: grenade launchers and rifles are pointed at them.
La Silla Rota presents stories of
two families who have lost everything and now seek to reach the northern border
alive to seek asylum in the United States.
This is the first story:
Don Clemente has no words to
describe what he had to live and that forced him to abandon his heritage he built
for 30 years. “It’s one thing I don’t know how to describe. They were
going to kill me and my children, says the 53-year-old man with his voice cracking
He narrates that a few days ago, heavily
armed and hooded people who identified themselves as being from Cartel Jalisco
Nueva Generación entered his home. The construction worker points out that
these men have no scruples, because they not only attacked him, but also his
children and his wife.
They were going to start dinner
that day, around 9 at night, when the armed group entered their house. They
aimed at Clemente with AK47s and at his family with grenade launchers; They
asked him to work with them, but he flatly refused. Later, the hit men demanded
that he give them data and information about other people, but “I don’t
have any addresses, nor do I mess with anyone,” he reiterates.
At that moment I felt death, sir;
that I was going to die with my children,” recalls the day laborer, whose
voice breaks as the minutes pass. He says that the hit men had already gone to
his home again and then returned, so Clemente and his wife took their children
and fled through the mountains. They left everything to try to save his life;
their home, the truck with their work tools, their clothes and everything they
had built for three decades.
We walked more than seven hours;
my girl was swept away by water approximately 1.40 meters deep. We saved my
boy, but my girl was taken away by the river (later they saved her)
He says that that was only part
of the inclement they had to oppose, because they had no food, no money and
they were being persecuted by the criminal group. “Because those gentlemen
had already told us that they were going to kill us and I preferred to flee,
leaving everything in the ranch,” reiterates the man, who does not stop
shaking. The biggest pain for Clemente, he remembers, is that they messed with
He assures that his children do
not owe anything and neither does he. The master bricklayer is well aware that
the threats from this criminal organization have gone beyond terror and daily
exhibit their crimes in cold blood.
Recently, he talks, a man was
burned alive in that area, set on fire with alcohol, until he died. Everything
to get information out of him. In the recording you can see the way his face
and part of his body burn; days before, the beheading of a woman, also while alive,
and the dismemberment of a young man. That was what Clemente and his family
were saved from, because it was their destiny, since they consider it to be
part of the paranoia of criminals.
For Clemente, the criminals
believe that everyone is their enemy and he fears that those towns or ranches
will take up arms and defend themselves from this stalking.
THEY TARGETED ME
The 6 year-old sister and 11 are
children of Clemente were at gunpoint by members of a criminal cell to service
the CJNG. The minors narrate how they lived that terrifying moment when they
were in front of the armed group; with weapons on their foreheads. “When
some hooded men arrived and pointed at me, I felt that they were going to kill
me with a rifle.” The boy uses his memory and enacts, with his little
arms, the way in which the armed subjects pointed them at his head. Still
shaking with fear.
His sister also remembers that
moment when they felt that the hitmen were taking their lives. “They came
with a rifle, they pointed them at us and underneath they brought bombs, those
of the Cartel Jalisco Nueva Generación. I felt they were going to kill us,”
describes the girl. The minor confirms that they were threatened, and that was
not all for her, because when they fled through the mountains, they had to
cross a deep river with a strong current.
The girl could not swim anymore
and halfway up the current the current was such that it snatched her from her
parents’ arms; however, for the second time, he managed to survive.
THE WORST NIGHTMARE
For Veronica, wife of Clemente
and mother of the children, what they experienced was the worst nightmare of
his life; a chilling dream already announced by criminals. He said that after
more than seven hours that they walked through the mountains, they were finally
able to reach a settlement where they provided support and took them to a safe
place. Now, they live refugees and their struggle is to reach the country’s
northern border alive and seek that the United States authorities give them
political asylum in the face of harassment by the CJNG.
Verónica does not give credit for
what is happening with so much impunity in the Tierra Caliente region and
expresses her sadness for the terror that her children experienced. It also
hurts him – he adds – to leave his land, his heritage and the dreams that
together, as a family, they had built. He emphasizes that what they suffered is
what many families experience every day and that for this reason, several
communities have already been left empty; ghost towns.
THE WAR OF THE “MENCHO”
|Drones with explosives used by CJNG against enemies|
This area of Tierra Caliente has
been controlled by the criminal organization of Nemesio Oseguera Cervantes, “El Mencho”, who seeks to take over all of Michoacán. The sierra has
also been a passage for weapons, vehicles and hitmen for that cartel, despite
the military and National Guard deployments, which have also been ambushed.
That region is located on the
borders of Michoacán and Jalisco, where the CJNG has recorded scandalous videos
in which they show their weapons and the way in which they kill. They show off
their weapons, their armored vehicles and the economic power of this criminal
group that has increased its attacks on the population, federal and state
forces, as well as its opponents.
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