Tensions Rise Between Mexican Army, Rebels

The army and rebels in southern Mexico are accusing each other of planning attacks to coincide with next week’s second anniversary of the Indian rebellion. Both deny planning assaults.

The Zapatista National Liberation Army issued a statement over the weekend saying there are signs the army is planning an attack next Monday in Chiapas state, Mexico’s southernmost and poorest.

On Tuesday, La Jornada newspaper quoted army sources as saying the military believes the Zapatistas might strike next week. The army thinks cultural centers being built in several Mayan villages may be disguised barracks, said the sources, whom the newspaper did not identify.

Both sides denied any plans to breach a cease-fire which has held with few disruptions for almost a year.

The two sides have held intermittent peace talks since the cease-fire began, and they are scheduled to meet again in January.

Similar tensions grew in advance of the first anniversary of the Jan. 1 uprising, but there was no major fighting.

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