Colombian state accepts responsibility in murder of human rights activist

News from Colombia | on: Wednesday, 23 August 2017

By Nicholas Hourigan

On the 11th August 2017, the Colombian Interior Minister Guillermo Rivera Floréz officially recognised the responsibility of the state in the killing of Pedro Durán Franco.

Durán, father of four and human rights activist in Cúcuta, North Santander with a passion for causes such as indigenous and trade union rights, was shot on 12th August 2003 whilst he was travelling by bus in the city of Cúcuta, North Santander Department.

The recognition comes more than a year after the North Santander Administrative Tribunal held that the state was in fact responsible for the killing of Durán.

The pardon comes in the middle of the present situation of approximately 53 social leaders having been murdered across the country this year.

Martha Maldonado, President of the Communal Federation of Cúcuta, stated, “We accept this recognition of the government. In any case, the request which we make is that we would like with this precedent, the threats and killings of social leaders to end not only in North Santander, but across the country.”

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