Thursday, January 28, 2010

The Unified Campesino Movement of Aguan attacked

The Unified Campesino Movement of Aguan attacked - Campesinos Seriously Wounded.
The La Voz de los de Abajo delegation received reports this afternoon from the CNTC and, via telephone, from a leader of the MUCA in Colon of the following urgent situation in communities affiliated to the CNTC.

While Pepe Lobo, the new de-facto president, assumed office with pomp and ceremony; the real face of the “reconciliation” coming to Honduras on January 27th was revealed again as repression in northern Honduras left 3 campesinos seriously injured - one in critical condition.

Edwin Diaz and Reynaldo Reyes were wounded in the leg and foot and Marco Antonio Estrada was shot in the face in the face when National Police and privately contracted paramilitaries came into the campesino community in Aguan and opened fire.

The Movement Unification de Campesinos de Aguan (MUCA), in English The Unified Campesino Movement of Aguan, was founded 16 years ago by campesinos whose lands, were illegally sold to three large landowners in the region. The landowners Miguel Facusse, Rene Morales and Reynaldo Canales are members of the Honduran oligarchy and powerful figures in the region. In 2001 the campesinos recuperated their lands while fighting the illegal sale in the agrarian legal system. After 8 years, the MUCA communities were violently forced off the land on December 19, 2009 and again on January 8, 2010. On January 14, there was another violent attack that evicted campesinos from the section of lands that are claimed by Rene Morales.

Today, January 27th, at 6 a.m. the campesinos recuperated their land again. At 10:30 a.m. a truck carrying troops from the National Police and a private car carrying paramilitaries hired by Rene Morales drove into the community, opened fire and drove off. Diaz, Reyes and Estrada were wounded by the gunfire. The community was able to call for medical help and an ambulance came. As the ambulance with the three campesinos inside attempted to go to the hospital it was stopped by army troops that arrived on the scene and was delayed for at least 10 minutes. Diaz and Reyes are in the hospital in La Ceiba while Estrada was transferred to San Pedro Sula because of the seriousness of his condition. The police and military are at the hospitals, causing concern for the campesinos safety according to the MUCA because Rene Morales is known to have ties and influence in the military battalion stationed in the region.

The MUCA and the CNTC are very worried about more attacks against the campesinos of the MUCA and about the safety of the 3 campesinos. It is also unknown as of this report whether Marco Antonio Estrada will survive the attack.

Please send an email to de-facto president Lobo condemning this attack and holding him responsible for the safety and security of the campesinos of the MUCA. Go to the link below and fill out the contact form for Mr. Lobo.

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