More on the situation faced by Ricardo Esquivia (co-founder of the CEDECOL Peace Commission) and his partners, and another chance to send a letter advocating for U.S. government engagement. Over 80 clergy and lay leaders in attendance at the UCC Connecticut Conference fall assembly signed a similar open letter two weeks ago.
Theo Sitther writes about recent threats facing Colombian peacemakers and community leaders, including Jorge Luis Montes Hernández and long-time MCC partner Ricardo Esquivia Ballestas, in the latest Third Way Cafe.
As communities in this region begin to organize for their rights, their leaders are coming under threat. On September 13, 2013, a threatening letter signed by paramilitaries falsely claimed that community organizers were members of the FARC guerrillas. Just days later, prosecutors arrested Jorge Luis Montes Hernández, one of the threatened community leaders, alleging that he is a member of the FARC and charging him with criminal conspiracy, homicide, forced displacement, extortion, and other charges. A source has indicated that similar charges could be brought soon against Ricardo Esquivia.
Read the entire article here.