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Displacement, Las Pavas

New Threats to the Community of Las Pavas by Palm Oil Company Aportes San Isidro

On September 27, 2012 Miriam Villegas, Director of the Colombian Institute for Rural Development, INCODER, the office responsible for the titling of Las Pavas lands announced that 11 plots are vacant land (state land) and that 10 of them should be titled to families of Las Pavas. This small victory for the community comes at a time of many threats. In mid-July 2012 the palm company Aportes San Isidro, responsible for having illegally evicted the Las Pavas families in 2009, brought 150 workers to plant palm on lands that are under investigation by INCODER. INCODER said that palm planting is a violation of the administrative process. Employees of the company including its lawyer Danilo Palacios made threats and physical attacks on members of the community and the international accompaniment. The following translated denouncements were made by the Las Pavas community attorney.

Saturday September 29, 2012

Today on September 29, 2012, at 10:30 am Mr. DANILO PALACIOS BENITEZ, Mr. MARIO MONTERO MARBLE and another heavily armed man of unknown IDENTITY, went where two young members of ASOCAB were preparing land for planting and made verbal threats and profanity and demanded they stop working. When the two farmers refused, one of the armed men rushed towards, pushed and threatened to hit them in the face with the butt of the gun. All the while Mr. MARIO MARBLE aimed his his gun at them. Seeing that the young men did not back down the armed men left saying that they would not allow anyone to sow again and that if they did there would be consequences.  (More about Aportes San Isidro armed security).

Monday October 1, 2012

Again the rights of the community of the Peasant Association of Buenos Aires – ASOCAB rightful claimants of the Las Pavas farm have been threatened by oil palm company APORTES SAN ISIDROS.A.S., persistent in its aggressive attacks against the lives and property of this rural community affected by the conflict.

Sunday morning while going to their plots to work, they found 6 homes completely destroyed. These homes where ready to be lived in by families who are part of the return process of the Las Pavas farm under investigation by INCODER. 

The farming community has no doubt that these attacks were carried out by palm company personnel, who days earlier had threatened to destroy everything ASOCAB built, in addition to destroying their crops, fences, attacking them and threatening them with death.

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INCODER will be at the Las Pavas farm again from October 10 to 19, 2012 for the visual inspection of the remaining plots of land claimed by the families of Las Pavas. Pray that justice prevail and that just as these 11 properties were recognized as state land and returned to the families that the rest of land claimed by them would be returned to them as well. Also that the authorities do their job and control the violent employees of Aportes San Isidro and cease their attacks on the community.

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About CPT Colombia

CPT (Christian Peacemaker Teams) Colombia is an International organization seeking to be allies for and partner with communities who are threatened with displacement and violence. We try to support their initiatives to promote justice and peace and their resistance to attempts by those who oppress them and seek to dispossess them of their land, culture and livelihoods.

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