[News] Honduras: Colombian ex-Paramilitaries Recruited by Pro-Coup Forces

Anti-Imperialist News news at freedomarchives.org
Thu Sep 17 09:57:28 EDT 2009

Honduras: Colombian ex-Paramilitaries Recruited by Pro-Coup Forces

Written by Jason Wallach
Wednesday, 16 September 2009

The Colombian 
El Tiempo reports that high powered former 
paramilitaries in Colombia are recruiting 
ex-paramilitary members for work in Honduras.

The short article which appeared in the Sept. 13 
edition of the paper, claims that 40 men 
participated in a “training” that took place at 
the “El Japón” ranch, close to the rural town of 
La Dorada, half way between Medellín and Bogotá. 
The ranch was ex-propriated from its former owner 
and convicted narco-trafficker Jairo Correa 
Alzate, and turned over to the DNE (Dirección 
Nacional de Estupefacientes), the Colombian version of the DEA.

The 1000 hectare ranch was parceled out in 2004, 
supposedly under the charge of the DNE, but 300 
hectares were leased to Gustavo Isaza, who is 
linked to the brutal Omar Isaza Self-defense 
Front, a decommissioned branch of the former AUC 
paramilitary group. According to the paper’s 
sources, the recruits were offered salaries of 
US$750 per month to “guard ranches” in Honduras.

The recruits were reportedly waiting for 
higher-ups to decide whether they would be 
transported by plane through Panamá, or illicitly by boat up the coast.

In Honduras, the National Front Against the Coup 
has repeatedly 
the presence of foreigners employed as 
paramilitaries who target key leaders in the 
resistance movement against the coup. Bertha 
Olivo of the Committee of Families of the 
Detained and Disappeared told El Tiempo about a 
group of 120 paramilitaries funded by pro-coup 
businessmen. Reports point to various 
concentrations of paramilitaries in San Pedro 
Sula, and the Santa Barbara Department.

Tomás Andino, an elected Deputy from the leftist 
UD party said, “Many rightwing extremist 
organizations from different countries have 
offered support to the de facto government. They offer manpower and weapons.”

“We know of combatants from Cuba and El Salvador, 
so the possibility of Colombians doesn’t surprise us.”

Incidentally, in spite of suffering a long 
history of paramilitary violence in the region 
where recruiting is strongest, there still 
remains a strong grassroots movement for social 
and economic justice. Read this 
with Miguel Ángel Gonzalez Huepa, who recently 
released after 17 months in captivity as a 
political prisoner. He is the leader of the 
Farmers Association of the Cimitarra River Valley 
(ACVC), the region where mercenary recruitment is very strong.

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