Activist killed - 42 assassinations of social leaders so far this year

News from Colombia | on: Friday, 28 April 2017

Another social activist has been assassinated in Colombia. On the morning of 27th April the body of Diego Fernando Rodríguez was found in the municipality of Mercaderes, Cauca. He was a peasant farmer leader and legal representative of the local community council.

This latest killing comes as the Patriotic March release a new report detailing 42 assassinations of community leaders and activists in Colombia.

The report denounces the Colombian government's failure to investigate these crimes and denial of any link between the killings. The Patriotic March has repeatedly reported the presence of paramilitary groups in areas of the country, some in areas close to military bases.

According to the report Cauca department, in south-west Colombia, was the most dangerous area of the country for social and political and human rights activists. 10 have been killed there so far this year.

U.N. High Commissioner for Human Rights Zeid Ra'ad al-Hussein has confirmed the figure, while the Colombian government is denying this. Interior Minister Juan Fernando Cristo claimed only 14 community leaders have been killed this year, although he added that ten further killings are being investigated.



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