Ten years after the massacre at Chengue, the inhabitants of the village in the municipality of Ovejas, Sucre, returned to commemorate the event that changed their history.
This massacre was part of the violence that affected the Montes de María region from the 1990’s to 2005, during which paramilitary groups attacked various towns and villages. On January 17, 2001, paramilitaries came to take over the area before dawn and murdered 27 people. During the raid, they mistreated women, children, and men. They pulled them out of their homes and took them to the center of the village where they carried out the massacre. Finally, the paramilitaries set fire to the whole village: destroying their homes, belongings, means of organization, and entire life.
Ten years later, male and female leaders performed remembrance ceremonies with the support of different organizations. They invoked the memory of their lost families, neighbors and homes. That day, the families who remain displaced met up with some who have returned, and, in a public ceremony, recalled the life they wove there together.
Diana Karina Maldonado
Public Relations specialist
Photos taken for the Montes de María Development and Peace Program