Peasant leader murdered in Southwest Colombia

News from Colombia | on: Thursday, 10 August 2017

Last Sunday 6th August Nidio Dávila was brutally murdered after being dragged from his home by a group of up to twenty men.

The murder continues a pattern of growing paramilitary violence against political activists. Nidio Dávila was a local peasant leader, a member of the FENSUAGRO affiliated ASTRACAN peasant association. He was also a member of the Patriotic March social movement.

The group of twenty men were wearing insignia indicating they belonged to the Gaitanista Self-Defence Force, the most powerful paramilitary group currently operating in Colombia, albeit under different names. After Nidio Dávila was dragged from his home he was murdered in front of the local population. According to local reports the killers warned the locals that they dare not engage in programs to replace coca with legal crops.

Nidio Dávila was a local member of the recently established National Coordinating Committee for Coca, Ampola, and Marijuana Cultivators (COCCAM). The organisation is working to establish a strategy for an effective and sustainable gradual replacement plan as has been agreed in the peace agreement.

The murder of Nidio Dávila was the second to hit COCCAM in the region and according the Patriotic March he was the 74th political activist killed this year.

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