Source Defensores en Linea
By Marvin Palacios
Tocoa, Colón.- The administrator of the La Confianza Peasant Settlement, Noel Isaac Del Cid, 32, was murdered on Saturday, January 5; shot several times by an unidentified gunman.
The Peasant Settlement La Confianza, located in the jurisdiction of the municipality of Tocoa, belongs to the Unified Campesino del Aguán Movement (MUCA).
In this same settlement, in November 2016, the president of MUCA, José Angel Flores Menjívar and Silmer Dionisio George, were also shot dead.
Both Flores Menjívar and George had precautionary protection measures issued by the Inter-American Commission on Human Rights (IACHR).
Peasant organizations fear that with the murder of Noel Isaac del Cid, the climate of violence, intimidation, threats, murders and disappearances against the rural organizations of the Aguan will result in an escalation of a bloody conflict generated by the ambition of landowners in the area.
Speaking to Defensores en Linea community leader Yoni Rivas sAID, “This KILLING reflects the fact that paramilitary structures remain active in Lower Aguán … community leaders are repeatedly threatened and persecuted for defending the rights of peasant communities.
Since the coup d’etat of 2009, there have been more than 100 violent deaths of peasants, police and private security guards in Bajo Aguán; but the vast majority of those who died were land rights activists.
On November 17, 2016, the Agrarian Platform of Bajo Aguán warned about the strategies used by the government and powerful economic groups, in order to create terror in the area and discredit the work of human rights defenders and organizations that have denounced and accompanied the peasant groups.