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Colombia: Not Even the Pandemic Halts Killing of Social Leaders
Written by <a href="index.php?option=com_comprofiler&task=userProfile&user=33791"><span class="small">teleSUR</span></a>   
Monday, 20 April 2020 12:33

Excerpt: "Colombia's National Agrarian Coordinator denounced that social leader Teodomiro Sotelo was assassinated on Friday while working on his farm in the El Tambo municipality."

Men in the capital of Colombia, Bogotá. (photo: Raul Arboleda/AFP/Getty Images)
Men in the capital of Colombia, Bogotá. (photo: Raul Arboleda/AFP/Getty Images)


Colombia: Not Even the Pandemic Halts Killing of Social Leaders

By teleSUR

20 April 20


The harassment of farmers is framed in the dispute for the territory among armed groups.​​

olombia’s National Agrarian Coordinator (CNA) denounced that social leader Teodomiro Sotelo was assassinated on Friday while working on his farm in the El Tambo municipality.

"Armed individuals entered his property to murder him in front of his family and workers," local outlet El Colombiano reported and recalled that several farmers are migrating out of the area to avoid being new victims of violence.

This is, for instance, the case of five Afrorenacer Community Council members and 15 people from the Betania, Honduras, and San Juan areas.

They have been threatened by armed groups operating in their territory, as the Cauca Valley Network in Defense of Life and Human Rights denounced.

The harassment of farmers is framed in the dispute for control of the territory among groups linked to coca cultivation and drug trafficking. 

"Social leaders can count on the embassy's support at any time, also during the coronavirus. See and hear the concerns of the Cauca leader Hector Carabali."

"They're killing those who oppose them or denounce violent actions... What we experience here is very cruel. We are trapped by quarantine and violent people,” a southwestern Cauca resident explained.

The social leader Sotelo worked on the Territorial Council's board of directors and was part of a committee set up to build a highway.

He was also a member of the Development Board that is to hold talks with the government of President Ivan Duque to find alternatives to the problems of the region.

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