Wednesday, 18 November 2009

Assassination of indigenous in Cauca

Since death threats were made a month ago against social movements and individuals in the south-west of Colombia three more indigenous have been killed in the region. Here is a translation of an action alert by human rights NGO Nomadesc:

The organisations below denounce the serious situation facing indigenous communities in the north and west of Cauca. In just two weeks three indigenous have been assassinated and another is in a serious condition in intensive care in Cali. This area has become heavily militarised in the last two weeks. As reported previously, on October 22 a threat was sent to CUT Cali (trade union committee) and Nomadesc from the Municipality of Santander de Quilichao. Five organisations were mentioned, including the indigenous reserve of Cerro Tijeras and six people who participated in the recent Minga were named. The threat was signed by the paramilitary group 'Aguilas Negras Nueva Generation' (Black Eagles New Generation).

The recent Minga denounced the continuing human rights violations suffered by indigenous communities, communities of African origen, farmers, workers and students.

1. On October 29 MARLY CAROLINA HUILA GUAMANGA was assassinated in the village of Damián in the indigenous reserve of Cerro tijeras, Suárez municipality, Cauca.

2. On November 11 REINALDO BOMBA was assassinated in the village of Bella Vista in the indigenous reserve of Cerro tijeras, Suárez Municipality, Cauca.

3. On November 13 NILSON CAMPO was assassinated and EGIDIO OVANDO HUILA seriously injured in a place known as 'the tank' in Damián in the indigenous reserve of Cerro tijeras, Suárez municipality, Cauca. Both of them were travelling by motorbike when they were attacked by an as yet unidentified armed group. According to information from the community NILSON CAMPO was shot 5 times and attacked with a machete. He was shot three times in the abdomen, and once in the cheek and ear.

The indigenous 'comunero' (a joint holder of land tenure) was responsible for the local fish cooperative, and had been treasurer of the indigenous council of Honduras reserve in 2006 and captain of the council in 2007.

It is to be noted that these events happened in the middle of the night or early morning. The culprits would appear to be paramilitary groups that carry out their attacks in camouflage wearing black armbands.


Here is a link to a Guardian article about Colombian farmers suing BP in the High Court for damage caused to their farmland by the oil company's pipeline.

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