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Afro-Descendant & Indigenous: News & Updates
September 28, 2020
Monday, September 28 - 10am in Colombia, 11am (ET) in Washington D.C. Conversation CONVIDA20: "Colombia cries out for Life, Peace and Justice" Panelists: Diego Pérez and Omar Fernández Testimonies of Resistance Río Naya and Afavit Registrations at: bit.ly/pazcolombia20
September 27, 2020
Celebrating our 30th year as an organization, Illinois School of the Americas Watch (ILSOAW) and the SOA Watch Staff Collective invite you to join us for a virtual gathering on Sunday, September 27th at 2pm-3:30pm Eastern / 1pm-2:30pm Central / 11am-12:30pm Pacific. The afternoon event consists of music, conversation, and members of the SOA Watch Staff Collective will share more about our work to end US-led and backed state violence; dismantle Border Imperialism; and stand with communities in Latin America organizing against the militarization of their lands and lives under a neoliberal model that values profit over people and the environment. The event is bilingual (Spanish and English), and interpretation will be provided.
September 21, 2020
The increasing push for global militarization directly impacts billions of women and gender nonconforming folks around the world each day. These voices, experiences and perspectives are often silenced when approaching solutions to this crisis. Hear about how militarism is experienced and about the stories of resistance to violence from several communities accompanied by Christian Peacemaker Teams (CPT). CPT and the InterReligious Task Force on Central America & Colombia (IRTF) are partnering to bring several powerful voices together for a live webinar conversation on anti-militarism.
September 17, 2020
We discussed how climate and weather impact their crops, the farmer’s likes and dislikes of farming, and what organizations readers can reach out to support farming in Central America (original Spanish included).
September 2, 2020
We have already emitted enough greenhouse gases (GHGs), such as CO2, to change the very composition of our atmosphere. Scientists, researchers, policymakers, and governmental officials alike know this; they know that the effects of climate change are occurring now and will continue into the not-so-distant future. We now face the question: will we act now to limit the consequences of climate change by reducing emissions or continue with the status quo and suffer the consequences?
August 24, 2020
Several armed groups are competing in Nariño for control of land to grow illicit crops, illegal mining, and routes for drug trafficking. In the last four months, at least seven community members and members of the Awá Indigenous Guard have been murdered. On July 28, Fabio Alfonso Guanga García, the second Indigenous governor of the Ñambí Piedra Verde Reservation (in Barbacoas municipality), and his partner Sonia Lorena Bisbicus Ortiz were assassinated. At noon on August 11, six men shot at the truck in which Francisco Cortés Guanga and his two security bodyguards from the National Protection Unit (UNP) were riding. Francisco Cortés Guanga serves the Piguambí Palangala Reservation as human rights spokesperson with UNIPA (Unidad de Pueblos Awá). His father, Segundo Jaime Cortés Pai, governor of the same reservation, had received death threats two weeks prior. Then on August 19, three Awa Indigenous youths were killed in the remote Aguacuate community of Pialapi Pueblo Viejo Reservation (Ricaurte municipality); others are rumored to have been forcibly disappeared.
August 23, 2020
We are outraged at the killing of two Nasa Indigenous men, José Abelardo Liz Cuetia, age 34, and José Ernesto Rivera, on August 13 near Corinto in Cauca Department. The two men were shot and killed during a two-day military and police campaign to forcibly remove members of the Nasa Indigenous group from land that they claim is their ancestral territory. The security forces were deployed to fulfill an eviction order by Martha C. Velasco Guzman, mayor of Corinto, which Nasa leaders characterize as “irresponsible and without prior consult.” Legal ownership of the land is claimed by Incauca sugar refinery, a company owned by Carlos Ardila Lülle, one of the wealthiest entrepreneurs in Colombia. Nasa Indigenous men Julio Cesar Tumbo and Leónidas Perdomo were seriously injured in the attack.
August 21, 2020
We are concerned for the safety of environmental and indigenous rights defender Ubaldino García Canan and other members of the Nuevo Día Ch’orti Indigenous Association (CCCND) in Olopa municipality in Chiquimula Department. CCCND provides legal support and visibility to indigenous Maya Ch'orti' communities. They face repeated human rights violations and threats to their land, environmental, and cultural rights because of hydroelectric and mining projects in their territories. On the night of August 5, Ubaldino García Canan, who serves as spokesperson for the Maya Ch'orti' Indigenous Council of Olopa, once again became a crime victim when unknown persons forcibly raided his home and his adjoined small grocery store. Because the intruders stole personal documents along with money and products, indigenous authorities suspect that Ubaldino García Canan was being targeted because of his involvement with CCCND. Residents of 11 villages of Olopa municaplity (and several of neighboring Esquipulas municipality) have been organizing opposition to an antimony sulfide mine that is contaminating their rivers. In retaliation, they have been victimized by intimidation and violence.
August 18, 2020
We would like to invite you to a three-part webinar series in August that will delve into topics regarding the intersections of environmental justice, racism, and classism. These webinars will discuss work being done by progressive people and organizations internationally, nationally, as well as locally in Cleveland. We are offering this program to educate people on how the unification of these progressive movements are critical in creating a Green New Deal that works for all people.
Webinars will launch on:
August 17, 2020
At least 212 land and environmental defenders were murdered last year — the highest number since the group Global Witness began gathering data eight years ago. Some 40% of those killed were Indigenous peoples. Today on Democracy Now!, we get an update from Honduras, where the Afro-Indigenous Garífuna community continues to demand the safe return of five Garífuna land defenders who were kidnapped by heavily armed men who were reportedly wearing police uniforms and forced them into three unmarked vehicles at gunpoint. This was the latest attack against the Garífuna community as they defend their territory from destructive projects fueled by foreign investors and the Honduran government. “We are in danger daily — all the leaders of the Garífuna community, all the defendants of the land in Honduras,” says Carla García, international relations coordinator at the Black Fraternal Organization of Honduras (OFANEH).