Accessibility links

Mexican Rebel Leader Emerges After Four Years in Hiding

The leader of Mexico's Zapatista rebels has emerged from hiding in the jungle for the first time in four years, strongly criticizing the country's political leaders.

The colorful rebel, who goes by the name Subcomandante Marcos, appeared Saturday at a meeting of leftist activists in San Rafael in southern Chiapas state. The rebel leader's face was hidden by his trademark ski mask.

He spoke out against the left-leaning Democratic Revolution Party and Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador, the former mayor of Mexico City, and the party's likely candidate in next year's presidential election. Subcomandante Marcos said the presidential favorite is not a true leftist.

The Zapatista leader, who is believed to be a former academic, led an armed uprising in Chiapas in January 1994, demanding rights for indigenous people. He disappeared in 2001 after leading a march on Mexico City to support an Indian rights bill.

Some information for this report provided by AP and Reuters.