—Luis Eduardo Guerra, 37 days before his death
Yesterday, members of the Peace Community of San José de Apartadó traveled, on foot and by mule, through heavy rains and oppressive sun, to visit the grave of Luis Eduardo Guerra. Built in the typicalcampesino style, it is a small wooden house with an aluminum roof, weathered and hidden among tall grasses and guava trees. The journey commemorates the 2005 massacre of seven Peace Community members and a local man. Among the community members was Luis Eduardo, co-founder and celebrated leader.
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Join us in celebrating an amazing decade of FOR’s accompaniment in Colombia.
For 15 years, the Peace Community of San José de Apartadó has organized, spoken out, marched, and built a global network of allies; against dramatic odds, in spite of more than 180 community members having been killed, these brave farmers have managed to stay on their lands. This feat is hard for us in the global North to imagine — the courage it takes to face death and stay put.
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Northwestern Colombia: The news arrives slowly — paro armado, an armed strike — a faint rumor that trickles, passing from person to person, word of mouth: que no baje al pueblo, don’t go into town today. The radio crackles; static that breaks the hazy, afternoon heat:
… all public transport companies in Urabá will suspend services for fear of what could result as consequence of an armed strike ordered by the former “Gaitanista” Self-Defense Forces, today known as drug-traffic gang, the “Urabeños,” in order to observe the burial of leader Juan de Dios Úsuga David, alias “Giovanni,” shot to death by police.