Thousands of farmers stormed a dam in Mexico’s northern border state of Chihuahua Tuesday, using firebombs, sticks and rocks to drive back National Guard soldiers, who opened fire with tear gas and live ammunition, killing two protesters. The farmers are demanding Mexico stop diverting water to the United States from the La Boquilla Dam, which they say has left them unable to irrigate their crops amid a searing drought. This is Abel Alvarado, one of the protesters.
Abel Alvarado: “It is a reaction from citizens who are defending their homeland. Water is everyone’s heritage. Water doesn’t belong to anyone. Water is for everyone in Chihuahua, for all Mexicans.”
Under terms of a 1944 treaty, Mexico owes the United States nearly a half-billion cubic meters of water, to be paid by October 24.