MUCA denounces new evictions and macabre plans against campesinos

Posted on February 12, 2010

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MUCA evictionsNext February 25 a Truth Commission will be established to supposedly investigate the facts around the coup d´état and end this period of history in Honduras. The National Front of Popular Resistance (FNRP) and the different organizations reject what they consider this to be the last piece of a pantomime orchestrated to pretend that Honduras has gone back to normality. It also denounces the kidnappings, torture, and assassinations against members of the Resistance and the forced evictions of the Unified Campesino Movement of Aguán (MUCA), who keep defending their lands, seized by businessmen tied to the coup.

The lower Aguán region, in the northern department of Honduras, has been the scene for these violent evictions that have left many injured.

The MUCA has denounced that this past February 12 and 14, armed military and police members, with the help of security guards hired by Miguel Facussé, attacked a group of campesinos who had started retaking the land since December 9, 2009. According to this organization, those lands were seized by the businessmen Miguel Facussé, René Morales and Reynaldo Canales, who took advantage of the coup, and put a stop to a land redistribution that had begun under Manuel Zelaya´s presidency.

“The campesinos of MUCA have had to face constant death threats and violent evictions by the military, national police and security guards (paramilitaries), made up mainly of reserves under the command of two Colonels in the region,” denounced Wilfredo Paz, a MUCA spokesperson.

February 12, members of MUCA who were on land that was retaken for the Concepción community, Tocoa municipality, Colón Department, were attacked with fireguns and left many injured. Among them, Margarito Peralta who is in serious condition in the hospital.

“We were in the farm when a police patrol and three cars with the security guards of Miguel Facussé, arrived, all wearing ski masks,” said Juan Ramón Chichilla, a MUCA member. “They began to threaten us, saying they were going to capture and kill us. After half an hour, another patrol came with more members of the Preventative Police and armed forces and began shooting at us.

A shoot-out began leaving people injured from both sides and while we ran away, they continued shooting at us. We are living a state of terror and the whole community feels under constant threat due to the military presence and the helicopters that fly over the region, close to the palm trees,” said Chinchilla.

Militarization of Bajo Aguán

Militarization of Bajo Aguán

MORE EVICTIONS

On February 14, the paramilitaries together with members of the police and military, attacked MUCA members in the Aurora cooperative, near the Aguán River.

“The security guards came disguised with military uniforms and begun shooting. There were many injured and at least two dead,” explained Wilfredo Paz.

The MUCA campesinos didn´t attack anyone. They just want to retake their lands, but the forces of repression and paramilitaries shoot at us and they will have to defend themselves.

A campaign has began to discredit our movement. They are saying there are guerrillas in our lands, which is completely untrue. It´s only campesinos defending their lands,” he said.

According to MUCA, the military and police are preparing an offensive with more than 500 forces to “raze up the region” which would come to a massacre.

“They don´t have respect for anyone and don´t care if there are women, elderly or children. When they arrive they shoot to kill. We ask human rights organizations, national and international, that arrive to Bajo Aguán because the next few hours will be crucial,” said Paz.

“We also ask the international community and solidarity organizations to denounce what is happening and put pressure so that negotiations are revitalized, because in this region life is not worth anything, human rights are not worth anything. The only that is left is the interests and money of business people.”

MUCA denounced also that there is approximately 300 orders of arrest against their members.

SOURCE: UITA