Aida Quilcué – walking the word
Indigenous minga arrives in london!
Saturday 26th September
Bolivar Hall, 56 Grafton Way,
London W1T 5DL
(Euston and Warren Street tube, Victoria line closed , Northern line is running)
Guest speaker: AIDA QUILCUÉ, a spokesperson of the Minga of Indigenous and Popular Resistance, champion for the rights of the indigenous communities in the Cauca Valley, Colombia.
With ‘La Minga’ film show, plus solidarity panel with Polo Democratico Alternativo UK and movements of Coordinadora Latinoamericana.
COMMUNITY SOCIAL WITH MUSIC
Sunday 27th September
6pm – 10pm
Telefono de la Esperanza
Unit 7, Fairfax House
Overton Road, Brixton
London, SW9 7JR
(Stockwell tube, Loughborough Junction rail, Victoria line closed, Northern line is running. Buses 36, 436, 185, P5, 133, 59, 159, 3, 415)
..bring food to share
The indigenous peoples have had enough, they will not put up with false promises, lies and trickery any more. They are out on the streets fighting: to ‘liberate Mother Earth’ from the destructive alliance between multinational corporations and the Colombian rich; and for a dignified future for their children and their communities. They are a moral force rising from below to reclaim what is justly theirs, life itself.
Minga of Indigenous and Popular Resistance
The indigenous peoples’ fight is being carried out through participative mass mobilisation – the Minga of Indigenous and Popular Resistance. In October last year, with a special focus against the misnamed ‘free trade agreements’ with the US, Canada and the EU, and resisting waves of riot police assaults, the Minga blocked the Pan American Highway for ten days, following on with two 40,000 strong marches over hundreds of miles that ended in the capital city, Bogotá. This committed and democratic movement is inspiring other impoverished, exploited and excluded sectors to unite in a common process, such that today the Minga is indeed becoming the cornerstone of popular resistance to Uribe’s regime.
Uribe has launched a ferocious campaign of repression and persecution. Aida’s husband Edwin was assassinated in an army ambush on 16th December 2008, and on 12th May 2009 her 12 year old daughter narrowly escaped an attack by four armed gunmen. These incidents are part of a pattern of deadly, genocidal, violence; 85 indigenous people have been assassinated so far this year alone. As has become notorious for trade unionists, state terror against indigenous people is carried out in complete impunity: nobody is found responsible even in the most blatant cases.
Meanwhile governments like that in the UK continue to foster the illusion of a Colombian democracy. Nothing is further from the truth, in a country where four million people have been forced from their homes, and tens of millions more are like them in destitution. The Colombia Solidarity Campaign delegation that visited this summer can testify that mining, water and timber corporations are planning to drive still more indigenous, campesino and African-descendant communities off their lands.
We have entered a new period where the outcome of events in Colombia and its neighbours matter on a world scale. The US plan for seven more air force and navy installations in Colombia reinforces its capacity to target and eliminate movements or governments that stand up to imperialism. The new deployment poses a threat to the security of the entire Latin American continent, a warning against the popular resistance that is on the rise.
The situation is coming to a head. Expect direct action across the Andean region this 12th October, the 517th anniversary of Colombus’s ‘discovery’ of the Americas (a date that is marked by the indigenous movement not as a discovery but as the Day of Disgrace, the start of the colonial conquest that continues still in modern form).
It is time to make the Minga visible here too, to internationalise its word and establish an active support network. We invite you to come and learn at first-hand the views of the indigenous movement, to join us in making solidarity protests around 12th October and help fashion an ongoing campaign of mobilisation and accompaniment until the Minga’s demands are met.