Two men attacked Sofia Gatica in district Acosta, Córdoba today, a few meters away from where she works. Just 72 hours after environmental activist Sofia Gatica received a terrifying death threat, she continues in fear for her life.
“They didn’t speak. One jumped on top of me and they kicked and beat me. I screamed loudly and the neighbors came out to help me.”
Sofia has been spearheading a blockade against construction on a new Monsanto plant in Malvinas, Argentina. The blockade is in place 66 days and will remain indefintely. It appears Monsanto has taken notice of the disruption.
The assailants did not steal anything and they took off on motorcycle shortly after the attack. Sofia filed a complaint this afternoon with local police. The identities of the attackers today as well as the man who threatened Sofia earlier this week are still unknown but it seems obvious who sent them.
“I didn’t want to have guards watching over me” Sofia told Canal 10 of Cordoba. “I just want the people of Monsanto to leave me in peace.”
Despite the threats on her life and attacks Gatica refuses to leave the Malvinas campsite and will continue to protest the new Monsanto plant construction in Argentina. There is now an armed guard stationed on her property.
Sofia is mother of three children and has one grandchild. Her fourth child died shortly after birth due to exposure to agrochemicals. Her remaining children have all tested positive for agrochemicals in blood analysis.
Gatica won the 2012 Goldman Environmental Prize for her environmental work with Madres de Ituzaingó Anexo. The Goldman Prize is the world’s largest prize for grassroots environmentalists. Each of the winners, chosen from the planet’s six inhabited continental regions, demonstrate exceptional courage and commitment, often working at great risk to protect our environment.