3 teachers assassinated in Colombia during teachers' strike

News from Colombia | on: Friday, 9 June 2017

The Colombian Federation of Education Workers (FECODE) has denounced the killings of three teachers during an ongoing national strike by teachers in Colombia.

Washington Cedeño Otero, a teacher in the municipality of Puerto Escondido, Córdoba, was assassinated on 6 June. He was shot dead near the school where he worked in front of students and their families. Washington was a member of the Association of Teachers and Education Workers in Córdoba (ADEMACOR), affiliated to FECODE. According to ADEMACOR, 17 teachers have been assassinated in Córdoba department since 2010.

Johana Alarcon, a teacher in the city of Cali, Valle del Cauca, was shot dead on 7 June.

The body of Juan Artunduaga, a teacher in Pitalito, Huila Department, was found on 7 June. He had disappeared a few days earlier. Another teacher from Pitalito, Joel Riaño Quimbaya, was also shot on 7 June and is gravely ill.

FECODE have also denounced the disappearance of Luz Elizabeth Hernández Mora, a teacher who participated in the mass march in Bogotá on 6 June. She failed to return home.

In the midst of these attacks and a smear campaign, the strike, which has now lasted nearly a month, continues. FECODE have announced a series of marches and demonstrations for next week as they seek to meet with the Colombian President to negotiate a series of demands that include teachers' salary, healthcare and investment in public education.

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