FARC-EP condemns attack on Indigenous community in Cauca

Urgent pronouncement of the FARC-EP (Second Marquetalia)

About the murders in Cauca

To the Indigenous communities of Cauca and to the Colombian people in general, we express our outright rejection and condemnation of the crimes — murders, massacres, forced and attempted disappearances — that are being committed throughout the country at this time of misgovernment signified by the determination of the establishment to simulate peace while tearing apart the Havana Agreements and commitments to the social movement.

In particular, today we vehemently condemn the attack suffered on the afternoon of October 29 by the community of the village of La Luz, territory of Tacueyo, municipality of Toribio, which claimed the life of the Neehwe’sx leader Cristian Bautista and of the guards Jose Gerardo Soto, James Wilfredo Soto, Eliodoro Uniscue and Asdruval Cayapu, in addition to seriously injuring six other people (Matias Montano Noscue, Jose Norman Montano Noscue, Crescencio Peteche Mensa, Dora Rut Mesa Peteche, Rogelio Tasquinas and Alver Cayapu) – a deeply painful event to which crimes are added every day, such as the recent murder of the young human rights defender Floer Jair Trumpet Pavi by government forces. 

There is nothing that justifies acting against unarmed people who have clearly and conclusively expressed their attachment to the defense of the path of reconciliation and good living in harmony.

According to preliminary information, “unknown men driving in a black vehicle ambushed the vehicle in which the Indians rode and fired. The Association of Indigenous Cabildos of the North of Cauca (ACIN) added that the attackers even fired at the ambulances.” A situation that makes what happened more burdensome and inadmissible, demanding a thorough and precise investigation that allows a quick clarification and definition of responsibilities and penalties.

As FARC-EP (Second Marquetalia), we have recently issued three pronouncements in which we state our position in the face of the dirty war and the human rights violations that have targeted the social movement, members of the Revolutionary Alternative Force of the Commons [FARC political party] and the people of the community in general: the communique of September 7, 2019, communique of September 13, 2019, and message to the Indigenous Authorities of the NASA Life Plan (Autoridades Indigenas del Plan de Vida Proyecto NASA), in response to their Open Letter of October 18, in which we expressed:

“1. No political or military act or crimes such as those reported with serious concerns by the communities of Toribio, Tacueyo and San Francisco have been committed by guerrillas or militiamen under our orders within the project of the FARC-EP (Second Marquetalia).

“2. It is evident that the serious deterioration, as a result of government perfidy, of the peace process that derives from the Havana Agreement, has led to the emergence of various groups that call themselves FARC or act under this acronym, and others with various operational modalities and purposes, some of which undoubtedly go beyond the parameters that must govern a revolutionary organization. Therefore, our actions and pronouncements clearly bear the same spokespersons backed by the specific names of the body of Commanders that signed the new Manifesto, dated August of this year … ”

Then as now, we reiterate our respect for the Indigenous communities, their authorities, customs and practices; the struggle to preserve their traditions, identity and territory, and to advance in the conquest of social justice and good living, which are also key objectives of our struggle, and we reiterate to always be aware of any clarification or requirement.

Fraternally,

Leadership, Revolutionary Armed Forces of Colombia-People’s Army 

(FARC-EP), Second Marquetalia

October 30, 2019

Translated by Greg Butterfield

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