Northern Cauca

“The Peace of Mama Kiwe (Mother Earth) in Freedom, of the Woman Unchained and Unsilenced”: The Meaning of Peace in Colombia from Indigenous Cauca

We make available here for download an English translation of an outstanding text written by Vilma Almendra Quiguanás, published originally as a chapter in Raquel Gutiérrez' (ed.) Palabras para tejernos, resistir y transformar en la época en que estamos viviendo..., Pez en el Árbol: Oaxaca/Puebla, Mexico (2011).

It's clear: they want to finish us off

By: Tejido de Comunicación - ACIN
Sunday, July 8, 2012*

In Northern Cauca, Colombia, things have never been clearer. Ever. We’ve marched, mobilized, and made every effort to demand that all the armed actors leave our territories. In mobilizations, assemblies, and public hearings, we’ve denounced the abuses committed against members of our community by the army, the police, the right-wing paramilitaries, and the guerrilla.

Cauca: We will only accept respect for our Indigenous Guard

By: Tejido de Comunicación – ACIN
Saturday, July 14, 2012 18:31

The coordinated actions of our communities have demonstrated to the world that the strength and clarity of our collective efforts can have an impact. As in other occasions, the mainstream media has covered these events without understanding what they actually mean. But we live in a complicated context, one in which there is always someone trying to take advantage. 

Siberia-Caldono, Cauca: Indigenous and Campesino Communities Rise Up Against the Murder of Éduar Fabián

By: Tejido de Comunicación - ACIN
Sunday, July 22, 2012

The inhabitants of El Crucero-El Rosario, a village situated in the La Laguna-Siberia reserve in Cauca, Colombia, got up early today. But it wasn’t to go to work in the fields; today, they’re getting together to cook food for the hundreds of indigenous community members and campesinos who have been there for days, accompanying the family of Éduar Fabián Güetio, a young man killed by the Colombian public forces.

Colombia: True autonomy is in the hands of indigenous communities of northern Cauca

By Tejido de Comunicación, ACIN
Thursday, July 19, 2012

It is abundantly clear that where the Colombian public forces operate with awkward ineffectiveness, indigenous communities in northern Cauca have demonstrated their autonomy and decisiveness.

Yesterday afternoon, a group of indigenous guards from the community of Toribío, armed only with bravery and consciousness, headed towards the village of Belén to capture FARC militants who were trying to ready explosives for use against a nearby communication tower.

Cauca: a knot in the war

By Alfredo Molano Bravo
Originally published in El Espectador
July 22, 2012
http://www.elespectador.com/opinion/columna-361599-el-nudo-de-guerra

"At the time of independence from Spain, the landlords attacked them until they were nearly exterminated. In the 1920s, indigenous leader Quintín Lame launched a struggle for control over ancestral territories, mobilizing indigenous peoples throughout the northern regions of Cauca and Huila and southern Tolima. Their uprisings were put down, but it was in this context that the Revolutionary Armed Forces of Colombia (FARC) was born."

A Bunch of Indians!

By: Catalina Ruiz-Navarro
Originally published in El Espectador on July 18, 2012

“Muchos Indios” (lit: “Many Indians”) is how a website recently titled a news piece about how the indigenous guard threw the National Army out of their territory in Cauca, Colombia.
In Colombia, the colloquial expression “Indian” is used as an insult, while “White” is a compliment. To be “Indian” is to be ugly, savage, invisible, exotic; indigenous communities are valued only by tourists – always and only when in traditional dress.

To the People of the Great Territory from the Cxhab Wala Kiwe (Territory of the Great People): I’m the one who is grateful

As I thank you for the good-bye letter you sent me and made public, I need to recognize that there is a lot contained in your words. I will reply as I can, knowing I will not be able to do them justice. Your letter expresses a spirit that moves and inspires me to honor it on its own terms. This is why I start from the wisdom expressed in the conclusion, where you invite me to keep the friendship and gratitude and to continue without resentment and bitterness.

The march of Colombia's war

Indigenous people in Colombia are fighting their perpetual struggle against the militarization of their communities. In a horrific incident earlier in February, Colombia's guerrillas (the FARC) massacred dozens of Awa indigenous people in Narino. FARC claimed the massacre was a reprisal for Awa's cooperation with the military, who came earlier and coerced some people to cooperate with them.

More stories on the mobilization

The international Freedom of Expression Exchange has a good article on the press aspects of the indigenous march in Colombia.

Below is a declaration of European Parliamentarians.

Parliamentary declaration
About the repression of the indigenous and trade unionist movements in Colombia

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