Agrarian Council calls on government to protect lives of activists

News from Colombia | on: Friday, 10 March 2017

The Agrarian Council (Cumbre Agraria), the national peasant farmer organisation, has organised a national assembly within the Interior Ministry in Bogotá in protest against the ongoing assassinations of community leaders in Colombia. They are calling for the government to take action against the growing paramilitary threat in the country and for the implementation of agreements dating from the Agrarian Strike in 2014.

In 2014 a national roundtable was established between the Colombian government and the Agrarian Council to negotiate a number of issues facing the Colombian countryside, and which had provoked that year's national strike. This week, however, the Agrarian Council declared the government had failed to fulfil their promises; in particular relating to the peasant farmer economy and guarantees and protection for social movements in Colombia.

The organisation highlighted the 120 social leaders who have been assassinated in the last 14 months in the country, including 30 killings so far this year. They have stated they will not leave the Interior Ministry until members of the government, including Interior Minister Juan Fernando Cristo, meet with them to discuss these issues and implement clear measures to protect the lives of social activists.

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