Three community authorities from the Huehuetenango province in Guatemala were kidnapped and tortured for 15 hours by members of a neighboring community for “stealing electricity,” according to local sources who claim the other group have been persecuting them over their opposition to the British electricity company.
Alfredo Pedro Domingo and other two members of the National Struggle Front (FLN) were returning home at 10 p.m. local time from an encounter and training workshop on local crop production, to which people from northern Huehuetenango attended, when allegedly held against their will by members of the Paykonob' Chiquito neighboring village.
The victims claim to have been tied up to a pole while their captors shot cold water on them while being insulted, threatened, and accused of stealing electricity.
The Ancestral Pluri-National Government of northern Huehuetenango (Payxail Yajaw Konob' Akateko, Chuj, Popti’, Q’anjob’al) identified Pascual Tomas Andres, Miguel Pascual Martin, Juan Tomas Francisco, Pedro Felipe and Ramon Francisco Mateo, all from Paykonob' Chiquito and are supportive of the official government and mayor of Huehuetenango who endorses the British company projects in the region, as the those responsible for the aggression.
In a press release, the Pluri-National government said the attackers blocked the road with stones to force them to stop and later take them as prisoners. They then called the local police to hold them in San Miguel Acatan, a municipality within Huehuetenango.
“Around midnight, the Municipality Commissioner, by orders of the Municipal Authorities, took them from Paykonob' Chiquito to imprison them at the municipal capital.”
All three were released Saturday at 1 p.m. local time after 15 hours of being illegally detained. Alfredo Pedro Domingo claims to be in bad health after the events and intends to do some medical examinations and later file a complaint to the local authorities.
The FNL opposes the presence of the electric British company ENERGUATE, which they claim charges exaggerated prices for services, and support the nationalization of electricity production. The conflicts over the electric company have caused multiple clashes between neighboring communities in Huehuetenango.
The FNL claims that Jose Marcos Pascual Manuel, mayor of San Miguel Acatan and member of the LIDER Party, along with other members of Paykonob’ Chiquito oppose the FNL over their fight against ENERGUATE.
On Sept. 19, 2016, Domingo was also kidnapped, tied and beaten up along with other five members of the Local Council of the FLN in the same community.