Urgent: Paramilitary operations in Curvaradó, incursion of assassins in El Guamo, threats of an incursion in Alto Guayabal, and threats of collective assassinations

A few minutes ago, a witness reported the plotting of a massacre by paramilitary structures. This operation is financed by bad-faith occupiers and would be carried out early in December. The same source indicates that impunity for this massacre would be guaranteed by a ruse that would give the 17th Brigade an excuse for its failure to prevent it.

This plan for collective deaths alongside an increasing paramilitary presence is happening in the midst of heightened militarization in Curvaradó.
Twenty armed men from the paramilitary groups have installed camps on collective properties of the community of El Guamo, Curvaradó.

Since 9:00 a.m. last Saturday, the paramilitaries, who identified themselves as members of the “Gaitanista Self Defense Forces,” have been intimidating the inhabitants and are constantly entering their homes.

They warned that they would do a [social] cleansing of thieves. They asked about the presence of guerrillas and said that they would continue on to the Cara de Perro Mountain to confront the FARC guerrillas.

Mining companies are trying to obtain access to the Cara de Perro Mountain to explore and extract gold, copper and molybdenum. The mountain is a sacred place for the Embera people, and part of the Indigenous Reserve.

One of the paramilitaries camped in El Guamo is known as Andrés Moreno. The group traveled by motorcycle to the Santa María hamlet and from there they went to El Guamo. In Santa María there are properties belonging to the Afro-descendant communities that are occupied in bad faith by businessmen who have constantly threatened the people reclaiming their land.

A few hours ago, the paramilitaries warned the members of the Community Council that if they reported their presence, they would suffer the consequences.
In addition, last Sunday, November 25, on the radio program “Entre Etnias,” broadcast from Apartadó, they claimed that the Justice and Peace Commission impeded progress and was responsible for the assassinations of Argenito Díaz and Manuel Ruíz, and would soon kill the leader María Ligia Chaverra.

In reality, the murder of Argenito Díaz, Manuel Ruiz and his son Samir, have led to the investigation of businessmen engaged in large-scale cattle ranching, oil palm, and bananas, as well as the role of the police and the 17th Brigade for their possible responsibility through action or omission.

The leader María Ligia Chaverra has denounced the role of the businesses in the usurpation of land; and because of these denunciations there are grave threats against her life and attempts at judicial prosecution against her claiming she gave false testimonies.

Despite the government’s verbal and publicity efforts to show a successful process of restitution, the paramilitary structures continue exercising coercive force and control of the population in order to benefit the bad-faith business occupiers.
The absence of collective measures requested by the communities, who are supposed to benefit from provisional measures, continues without an effective response.

Bogotá. D.C., November 29, 2012
Comisión Intereclesial de Justicia y Paz