SAN SALVADOR – Prominent environmental activist Ramiro Rivera, who survived an attempt on his life in August, was killed last weekend in the central Salvadoran province of Cabañas, a colleague said.
“It was an ambush,” Francisco Pineda, coordinator of the environmental committee in Cabañas, told Efe.
Rivera was fatally shot Sunday while driving to his home in the city of Ilobasco. Also killed was a 57-year-old woman traveling in the same vehicle, while a girl of 13 was wounded.
The attack happened even though Rivera “traveled with security” since the failed assassination attempt of Aug. 7, Pineda said.
He said Rivera played a leading role in battles against proposed mining projects in the region.
“We see that the fundamental cause (of the murder) can only be his being against those projects and in defense of the lives of present and future generations,” Pineda said of his murdered colleague.
He added that he and four other environmental activists in Cabañas have been threatened.
El Salvador’s minister of justice, Manuel Melgar, said Rivera’s killing was “very probably” a planned assault and not “a common robbery,” Colatino newspaper said on its Web site.
National police director Carlos Ascencio said investigators are seeking a possible connection between this week’s slaying and the June murder of environmentalist Marcelo Rivera. EFE