An indigenous leader has been murdered during a party at his home in central Colombia shortly after midnight on January 1, a local indigenous organization said Tuesday.
Reinaldo Domico was killed as he changed the music on the stereo at a New Years party he was giving for family and friends. According to his wife the assassin entered the house at the back, went straight up to Domico and shot him four times in the head, neck and back.
Reinaldo Domico was a leader of Embera indigenous communities in the area of Dabeiba and had also acted as advisor to other indigenous groups around Colombia.
The OIA reports that Domico had received a threat by telephone warning him to “be careful’ during elections in 2011. The caller claimed to be from the “Gaitanistas”, a neo-paramilitary group also known as the “Urabeños.”
Indigenous leaders are frequent victims of Colombia’s armed conflict, often caught between groups fighting over land that indigenous communities have traditionally occupied.