Open letter for peace and justice

Open letter for peace and justice
Open letter for peace and justice

By: Katerin Erazo, Journalist

In the green valleys and mountains of Northern Cauca, where the land is fertile and the culture ancestral roots take root deeply, the voice of a people who have suffered too much is raised and who cries out for peace and justice. It is in this scenario that the Association of Indigenous Councils of Northern Cauca, Cxhab Wala Kiwe, addresses a nine-page letter to the commander of the western bloc Jacobo Arenas of the Central General Staff of the FARC dissidents, alias Andrés Patiño. This letter, woven with the pain and hope of a people who refuse to be silenced, is a testimony of resistance and dignity in the midst of adversity.

In each page This extensive letter tells the story of a people marked by violence and dispossession. There is talk of murdered indigenous leaders, of entire communities displaced, of children forcibly recruited to fight in a war that is not theirs. The atrocious crimes committed by the illegal armed group in the region are denounced, from selective assassinations to indiscriminate attacks against the civilian population. Each word is a testimony of pain and resistance, but also of hope and determination.

The letter not only denounces the crimes and human rights violations committed by the illegal armed group in the department, but also questions its real commitment to peace and the indigenous community. Questions are raised about the sincerity and willingness to negotiate of the Central General Staff, pointing out contradictions and ambiguities in its speech and actions. Participation in illegal activities and non-compliance with acquired commitments call into question the seriousness and credibility of the insurgent organization in the peace process.

But beyond the complaints and questions, the letter is a call to action and solidarity. It is a reminder that peace cannot be built on impunity and violence, but on dialogue, inclusion and recognition of the rights of all people and communities affected by the conflict. It is necessary to move towards a comprehensive peace that addresses the root causes of the conflict and promotes peaceful coexistence and prosperity for all.

The association highlights the importance of defending indigenous territories and demanding respect for the autonomy and self-determination of communities. Denounces the presence and actions of the illegal armed group in these areas, which violate the territorial and cultural rights of indigenous peoples. The protection of land and natural resources is essential for the survival and well-being of communities, and any threat or aggression against these territories must be faced with determination and firmness.

Furthermore, the letter is a call to the international community and human rights organizations to support and accompany the efforts of indigenous communities in their fight for justice and peace. Solidarity and collaboration are essential to confront the challenges and obstacles that communities face in their search for dignity and rights.

In this frank and direct letter, indigenous leaders of Cauca also questioned the direction and actions of the dissidents, raising doubts about the true nature of their struggle. In a sincere appeal, they expressed their bewilderment at the lack of clarity in the objectives of this organization, contrasting the violent actions with the proclaimed legacy of Manuel Marulanda and Jacobo Arenas.

The figures presented are shocking: in just four years, there have been 374 murders, 42 explosive attacks, 214 harassment of homes and schools, 225 individual and 112 indiscriminate threats, in addition to the recruitment of 785 minors and 25 forced disappearances. A total of 1,777 violent actions against the Nasa communities in northern Cauca, figures that generate alarm and concern.

Meanwhile, they noted that clashes with state forces represent a minimal fraction of these figures, raising questions about the true objective of the dissidents. They criticized the participation of the Central General Staff in the peace process, denouncing dark interests that go against the principles of true reconciliation.

The letter also highlighted the lack of protection for the civilian population during ceasefires, evidencing the need for a real commitment to the security and well-being of communities. Furthermore, they denied accusations of links with the ELN, describing them as attempts to divert attention from the real problems.

In a warning tone, they demanded clear answers and concrete actions from the dissidents. As ancestral authorities in the territory, they hope to be heard and considered in the search for solutions that truly benefit the communities. The uncertainty and worry are palpable, but so is the determination to defend their land and their people.

In summary, the letter from the Association of Indigenous Councils of Northern Cauca is a powerful testimony of resistance and hope in the midst of adversity. It is a call to action and solidarity in defense of the life, dignity and rights of indigenous communities and all people affected by the conflict. It is a reminder that peace is possible, but it requires the commitment and will of all actors involved. It is a cry for justice in a world marked by injustice and inequality, and a light of hope in the darkness of conflict and violence.

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