Mexican president denies ties to communist party

A declassified report details López Obrador’s political activities between 1980 and 1983 in the state of Tabasco

Declassified report shows Mexican president had dealings with Communist Party
President López Obrador vowed to dismantle the Center for Research and National Security (CISEN), throwing open the intelligence service's archives - Photo: File photo/EL UNIVERSAL
English 06/03/2019 18:29 Newsroom & Agencies Mexico City Pedro Villa y Caña/EL UNIVERSAL & AFP Actualizada 18:29
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A declassified record found in the General Archive of the Nation revealed that Mexican President Andrés Manuel López Obrador was spied on by the Investigation Department of Mexico’s Federal Security Directorate (DFS), which later became the Center for Research and National Security (CISEN), which the left-wing president vowed to dismantle.

López Obrador threw open the intelligence service's archives this week, allowing anyone to consult anything in them, except for sensitive details such as information on minors or individuals' private lives.

He vowed to shed light on the intelligence service's involvement in crimes and atrocities committed during the so-called "Dirty War" on leftist activists in Mexico from the 1960s to 1980s.

"There were major injustices committed in the labeling of social activists. A lot of people were repressed. Farmers who didn't even know what communism was were accused (of being communists) and repressed in those years," Lopez Obrador said.

"We must never again allow an authoritarian regime to persecute people for their ideals,” the president stated in a morning press conference.

The document details López Obrador’s activities between 1980 and 1983, when he served as delegate of the National Institute of Indigenous Affairs (INI) and as PRI leader in the state of Tabasco.

“Andrés Manuel López Obrador, aged 35, born in the village of Tepetitán in the Macuspana municipality, currently resides in Mexico City […] he was a supporter of the Mexican Communist Party (PSUM-PCM). In 1976, he became a member of the PRI (Institutional Revolutionary Party),” the document reads.

The Federal Security Directorate kept track of meetings, public acts, and PRI events attended by the Mexican president and his close associates, as well as activities held by socialist groups that criticized the statesman’s actions, accusing him of sowing divisions between them. The report also claimed that the politician was attempting to turn the PRI into a more progressive and revolutionary party.

In a report dated 25 July 1983, a DFS agent who infiltrated the Unified Socialist Party of Mexico (PSUM) in the Tenosique municipality claimed that the socialist group intended to “discuss matters concerning the proselyting strategies of the PRI in the state, as well as a region in the neighboring state of Chiapas.”

The report revealed that eight people attended a meeting at the home of one of the militants where Rodolfo Lira Rivera, head of the PSUM in Tabasco, complained about López Obrador’s actions, claiming that he had attempted to divide the political group.

“He cooled off political work in the state, given that the political position of the activists had a detrimental effect on the community’s communist party, leading to split opinions: While some claim that the attitude of PRI leader Andrés Manuel López Obrador goes against the PSUM, others say that he is attempting to turn the PRI into a more progressive and revolutionary political party.”

According to the intelligence report, the socialist leader claimed that Andrés Manuel López Obrador was a traitor to the PSUM and the underclass. “This politician, with no clear cut ideology, is nothing more than a mechanism used by the present government regime to decimate the most important opposition party: The PSUM.”

Records dating from 1983 also showed that Andrés Manuel López Obrador purchased a rustic property near Palenque, Chiapas while leading the PRI in Tabasco.

The report also showed that López Obrador returned from Mexico City to Tabasco in June, 1975, when Leandro Rovirosa took office as governor and he was appointed delegate of the INI in the state.

The now Mexican president put together a team with members of the Mexican Workers Party (PMT) and the Mexican Communist Party (PCM).

“They never worked to promote development in the region. All they did was politicize farmers with Marxist-Leninist ideals.”

During a meeting with 70 rightsholders of communal lands in El Alacrán, El Mingo, and El Golpe Mingo, farmers demanded that government members, including Andrés Manuel López Obrador, then leader of the PRI Steering Committee, build paved roads and schools. They also demanded that the government provide access to drinkable water, power, urban transport, fish ponds, copra driers, and boats with fishing equipment.

Onésimo de la Rosa López, chairman of the El Mingo Management Committee, claimed that “the communal landowners were tired of empty promises and wanted their demands met soon, threatening to block the roads during the rain season to cut off access to Pemex facilities.”

To this, Andrés Manuel López Obrador replied: “We can solve this problem, but I must ask you to be patient.”

This morning, López Obrador denied that he was a member of the communist party in the 1970s.

"A lot of things in (the intelligence files) are invented. For example, it says I was a member of the communist party... and that I supported and gave money to that party," the President told a news conference.

"I wasn't a member of the communist party - although I did support social activists."


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