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The list seems endless. The systematic violence in Guatemala against the leaders of the resistance to mining, dams and other megaprojects grows by the day. Women, men and children are being threatened, persecuted, imprisoned and killed with absolute impunity.
Last Tuesday 16 April, a day before the celebration of the International Peasants’ Struggle around the world, they confirmed the death of Daniel Pedro, who had been kidnapped ten days before in Santa Eulalia municipality, Huehuetentango.
Daniel Pedro was a founding member of “amoyeb” and of the ganjobalano parliament, leader and member of the Qanjobal ALMG Linguistic Community and of the Santa Eulalia social movement, one of the main promoters of the community consultation of the ganjobal people of Santa Eulalia. Thus, his direct link with the assembly of peoples of Huehuetenango (ADH) and the Council of People of the West of Guatemala (CPO), reads a press release of both organizations.
The social movement of Santa Eulalia has been exposing and struggling against human rights and peoples’ rights abuses linked with the building of a hydroelectric dam on the rivers that go through San Luis plot of land. They have also supported the struggle of Santa Cruz Barillas against a hydroelectric company subsidiary of Spanish corporation Hidralia.
Real World Radio’s collaborator Anny Matzir, of CEIBA, interviewed ADH member Francisco Rocael. He made a call to the authorities to clarify the reason for Pedro’s kidnapping and murder.
“We have information that there was a mobilization in the north of the country and the peoples that live in the West of Guatemala are more united, this is the only way of stopping the systematic repression”, said Rocael.
Meanwhile, Isabel, a community leader of Santa Cruz Barillas, spoke about the work of Daniel Pedro and the way in which the life of the communities has been affected by the presence of corporations in their territories.
Interviews by Anny Matzir (CEIBA-Friends of the Earth Guatemala)
“No queremos ser mártires, no queremos que hayan más mártires en este país, pero también hay una responsabilidad histórica de hacer valer la palabra y demostrar que tenemos derecho a la construcción de un mundo mejor. Y no podemos huir a esa responsabilidad”, dijo a Radio Mundo Real la dirigente garífuna Miriam Miranda, coordinadora de la Organización Fraternal Negra Hondureña (OFRANEH).
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