Action Alert: Denounce Murder in El Tamarindo, Colombia

Late last week we received an urgent communication from the Rev. Jairo Barriga of the Presbytery of the North Coast in Colombia concerning the murder on April 12, 2013, of a young man, Narciso Enrique Teherán Mejia. His murder followed a series of death threats and paramilitary operations in an area called El Tamarindo in the municipality of Galapa, near the city of Barranquilla. Please read the background, and then take the action described below.

In the name of the Prince of Peace,

Rev. Shannan Vance-Ocampo                 Rev. Linda Eastwood

Director of Colombia Programs                Coordinator of the Accompaniment Program

 

Narciso Enrique Teherán Mejia was shot point blank in his face while sleeping in his home on April 12, 2013. His murder followed a series of death threats and paramilitary operations in an area called El Tamarindo in Colombia.This young man was the son of a land restitution activist. 

The Iglesia Presbiteriana de Colombia has been supporting this community for some time in their process of land restitution. This community has been together since 2001 and includes over 135 forcibly displaced families. Beginning on January 28, 2013 a paramilitary group called “El Cartel de la Costa” has been carrying out intimidation, evictions and threats to these families. Homes have been burned to the ground, crops have been destroyed, and community leaders have been threatened, in addition to the murder described above.  

Please join us in prayer for our sisters and brothers in the El Tamarindo community and for the grieving family of Mr. Teherán. You can help by writing to the following to key contacts listed below.

  • Let them know that you are a U.S. citizen (and name any other titles, leadership and membership you have in organizations such as the Presbyterian Church or the Presbyterian Peace Fellowship).  
  • Give them some of the background, and tell them that you demand an immediate investigation into the deteriorating situation in El Tamarindo.
  • Demand immediate protective measures to be put in place for the IDP (internally displaced person) families in El Tamarindo.
  • Request a response to your letter detailing the actions they are undertaking on behalf of the community of El Tamarindo. 

 

Fax a letter to the U.S. Embassy in Bogotá and an e-mail to the U.S. State Department.

1. ATTN: The Honorable P. Michael McKinley, U.S. Ambassador to Colombia

Fax to: 011-571-275-4600
E-mail to: AmbassadorB@state.gov

2. ATTN: Assistant Secretary of State Roberta Jacobson, Bureau of Western Hemisphere Affairs

E-mail: WHAColombiaDeskOfficers@state.gov

 

Send e-mails or letters in English or Spanish to these members of the Colombian government:

Name Title Address Email
Juan Manuel Santos Presidente de la República (President of Colombia) Casa de Nariño Carrera 8 No. 7 -26 edificio administrativo c/ 7 no. 6-54 Bogotá D.C. Colombia fsantos@presidencia.gov.co
Angelo Garzon Vicepresidente de la República (Vice-President of Colombia) Carrera 8 No.7-57 Bogotá D.C. Colombia contactovicepresidencia@presidencia.gov.co
Fernando Carrilo Florez Ministro del Interior (Minister of the Interior/Colombia) Carrera 8° no. 7 - 83 Bogotá D.C. Colombia servicioalciudadano@mininterior.gov.co
Eduardo Montealegre Lynett Fiscal General de la Nación (Justice Department/Colombia) Diagonal 22B No. 52-01 (ciudad salitre) Bogotá D.C. Colombia contacto@fiscalia.gov.co and denuncie@fiscalia.gov.co
Jorge Armando Otalora Gomez Defensor del Pueblo (Defender of Towns/Colombia) Calle 55 No. 10 – 32 Bogotá D.C. Colombia N/A