On the same day that Guatemalan President Otto Pérez Molina announced a two-year moratorium on mining, human rights and environmental activist Santos Fidel Ajau Suret was gunned down after leaving the peaceful community roadblock known as La Puya. He was a 54-year-old community activist resisting the El Tambor mine.
Memorably, on June 13, 2012, activist and community leader Yolanda Oqueli Veliz was shot in an assassination attempt while leaving La Puya. As an act of intimidation, her house was sprayed with bullets on July 9, 2013, the same day as Ajau Suret was assassinated by two armed motorcyclists. Despite these efforts to destabilize resistance efforts, La Puya remains strong and continues to blockade the main entrance of the El Tambor mine.
On Sunday, in a celebration of life, peace and defense of the earth, community members from La Puya joined together beside the central market of San José del Golfo in support of the peaceful struggle for dignity, water and future generations. This gathering was organized shortly after a press release denouncing the murder of Ajau Suret and the intimidation of Oqueli Veliz.
You can read the full piece by Alexandra Pedersen here on Upside Down World.
You can also read more here about La Puya.