PBI-Guatemala mourns the murder of Nelson Reyes who had participated in Tz’ikin Network processes

Published by Brent Patterson on

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The Peace Brigades International-Guatemala Project has posted: “Yesterday, December 27, 2020 Nelson Reyes was killed by several gunshots, by unknown men in the Nazareth neighborhood of Chisec, Alta Verapaz.”

PBI-Guatemala shared an article by the Tz’ikin Network, “a community communication effort of filmmakers, audiovisual collectives and community video groups from the Mayan and Ladino Indigenous Peoples of Guatemala.”

That network pursues “actions aimed at decentralizing, democratizing and decolonizing the media audiovisual production.”

The Tz’ikin Network says: “The information has not been fully clarified, but what has been known is that Nelson was on a motorbike accompanied by his young son, home to his in-laws, when he was shot.”

“The killers fled on a motorcycle. Nelson passed away, fortunately his young son was unscathed. Nelson leaves two young children in orphanage.”

It adds: “It is intolerable that we live in a country with these levels of violence and impunity.”

Andrea Ixchíu has also tweeted this article along with the comment: “They assassinated Nelson Reyes in Chisec, Alta Verapaz. An enthusiastic young man, he participated in processes of the Tz’ikin Network where he collaborated for a time. Justice for Nelson. Solidarity with your family and loved ones. I repudiate this violence, let this be clarified!”

In 2018, 3,881 people were murdered in Guatemala. That puts the homicide rate at 22 deaths per 100,000 people (down from 45 deaths per 100,000 in 2009).

In comparison, in 2019, the murder rate in Ontario, Canada was 1.69 deaths per 100,000.

While representing an estimated 4.9% of the Canadian population, Indigenous people accounted for 24% of all homicide victims in 2017. The homicide rate for Indigenous people that year was 8.76 homicides per 100,000 Indigenous population.

PBI-Canada expresses our condolences to the friends and family of Nelson Reyes.

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