[News] Honduras: Colombian ex-Paramilitaries Recruited by Pro-Coup Forces
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
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 papers
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
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 doesnt 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.
522 Valencia Street
San Francisco, CA 94110
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