Public Forces Repress the Minga in the Defense of Life

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The demand of a Negotiation Roundtable with the National Government remains.

Source: ONIC / The Dawn News / November 1, 2017

From the South to the North, in the streets, roads, rivers, the #MingaPorLaVida (Minga in the Defense of Life) is National… natives fueled the vindication of their rights as indigenous peoples with blood and strength.

Two more people were wounded, both shot, and are added to the seven who were wounded yesterday, at La Delfina point in Valle del Cauca, a road that leads from Cali to Buenaventura, the most important harbor of the Colombian Pacific. The injured are Rodrigo Dovigamo Dovigamo, 19 years old and a member of the Embera Chamí community of Bolivar-Valle del Cauca who was wounded in the foot, and also the young Jhon Anderson Ipia, a Nasa member, who was injured in the hand.

The indigenous authorities of ORIVAC denounced the attacks perpetrated by the Public Forces (Army and Police), since “they are using firearms and shooting indiscriminately at the protesters of the Minga” as it was stated by Alberto Guasiruma.

In the department of Caldas, the Regional Indigenous Counselor of Caldas -CRIDEC-, counselor Martha Hernández, denounces that “the ESMAD attacked the Embera communicator, Erika Giraldo, with pepper spray and rubber bullets while she was covering the Minga, and the community member Kelerman Guerrero”. This operation happened in the middle of the intimidations made by the Police who “warned us that they wouldn’t allow a mobilization, a threat that was confirmed today when they entered to the indigenous reservations, like the ones of La Trina and Guascal, where the Minga protesters are concentrated”. “We want to highlight that the agents of the ESMAD are using us as human shields to attack the protesters. Barricaded in the houses, with long guns and pistols”, she added.

In Risaralda, “there is a confrontation between the Indigenous Guard and the ESMAD in the Bakorí sector, municipe of Pueblo Rico, where the Embera Minga protesters of Risaralda, Quindío and Chocó are concentrated”.

In the department of Antioquia, thousands of Minga protesters – of the Emberas Chami, Guna Dule, Katio and Zenu communities- grouped within the OIA and the Student Movement, marched from the headquarters of the OIA to the administrative center La Alpujarra, where they will remain until the Department Government fulfills the agreed pacts of the last National Minga, and until the definition of the current National Minga.

In this massive mobilization for the fulfilment of thousands of agreements with the Government of Santos, the Awa people of the UNIPA and CAMAWARI are concentrated in the in the Gran Sabalo reservation. There are also thousands of Minga protesters of different indigenous communities that are part of the Regional Indigenous Council of Cauca (CRIC), who are currently meeting with the National Government in Monterilla, Caldono. As well as the protesters of Huila department – CRIHU, Nasa peoples, Misak, Yanakuna, Pisos and Tama Dinos –  are in negotiations with the El Hobo municipe.

In the Caribbean region of Colombia, hundreds of Wayuu of the AACIWASUG organizations are participating in the Minga against the systematic loot of their ancestral territories.

While in the capital of Vallenato, hundreds of Kankuamo, Wiwa and Arhuaco people are slowly concentrating in the Indigenous House and in the regions of the Black Line. While the Yukpas are concentrating in the Serranía del Perijá, and the Ette Ennakas in the south of Magadalena.

At the same time, thousands of Zenú protesters joined the struggle in Alto San Jorge and in Camaenka. In the Atlantic, the Mokaná people is moving in different groups.

In the Saldaña municipality, Tolima, Central Colombia, thousands of Pijao are participating in the minga, who since October 30 are involved in the struggle. In the Ortega municipality, Pijaos natives and from other sectors marched in the defense of the territory which is being looted by illegal miners. In North Santander the farmers are still mobilizing for their just struggles.

In Bogotá, hundreds of Minga protesters lighted their torches, as beacons of hope in defense of life. Unfortunately the heavy rain didn’t allow the ending of the march as planned, but it couldn’t defeat the resistance of our peoples in the defense of life, rights and territory.

This is how the word travels to get the actions done, on behalf of more than 100 thousand indigenous people in the National Minga of Indigenous People in the defense of Life, Territory, Peace and for the Fulfilment of hundreds of Unfulfilled Accords made by the National ‘Peace’ Government, and who are demanding the official installation of the National Negotiation Roundtable with the #MingaPorLaVida. Join!


Indigenous people denounce aggressions with firearms by the military police

Source: Resumen Latinoamericano / Contagio Radio / November 2, 2017

Photo credit: Contagio Radio

Indigenous people that are mobilized in the Minga of the Buenaventura road, pointed out that the accusations that imply the usage of explosive artifacts made by the police are false, and claimed that they have evidence of attacks with fire arms against the protesters. Until now the number of wounded in the point known as La Delfina is at least 9.

According to the last report of the ONIC, one of the wounded individuals is in severe state and may lose an eye. Also, Carlos Quiro, spokesman of the mobilization affirmed that the indigenous people have gathered shotgun ammunitions which would prove the use of firearms and grenades by the Public Forces during the conflicts with the community; the evidence has already been presented to the general prosecutor office.

Added to these violations of Human Rights, the indigenous people have also denounced the stigmatization on behalf of the Public Forces, the disappearance of leaders and threats, which have started for over a year in the different indigenous territories.

On November 1, the closure of the road was maintained, and according to Angelino, the leader of the indigenous mobilization, there would be possibilities for the carriers to cease activities and join the demonstrators, since the agreements made with the population of Buenaventura weren’t respected.

According to the last national report of the ONIC, on November 1 there were 2 more severely injured people, one who was shot in the foot and another with a wound in the hand. At the same time, indigenous people in Caldas, Risaralda, Quindio and Choco denounced the excessive use of force on behalf of the Public Force.


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