The Italian Association of Democratic Lawyers, the European Association of Lawyers for Democracy and World Human Rights and the International Association of Democratic Lawyers strongly protest against the assassination of various indigenous leaders in Colombia.
Eleven members of the indigenous movements in total have been assassinated since the beginning of August, following threats made by paramilitary right-wing groups. Only in the last week Nicolás Valencia Lemus, Celestino Rivera and Cesar Hurtado Tróchez have been killed.
Yesterday, the 14th of October, Hermes Arbey Díaz (Huellas Caloto), Mauricio Menza (Jambaló), Benjamín Ramos (Resguardo de Tálaga Caldono, Mariano Morano Dizú (Presidente de la Junta de Acción Comunal de La Palma Pitayó), Enyi Ulcué (Pueblo Nuevo, Caldono), John Freddy Piñacue, Mario Guetoto (Delicias) Diomedes Quinto (San Andrés de Pisimbalá), Joaquín Cotocué de San Andrés (Pisimbalà), Milciades Tumbo (San Andrés de Pisimbilá), José Ferney Pardo (Inzá, Tierradentro), Adolfo Quitumbo (Yatacue de Corinto), Harold Cucuñame (Honduras, Zona Occidente), Delio Quitumbo (Toribío), Mario Huetoto.(Resguardo de Delicias, Buenos Aires) have been seriously injured by police and armed forces attacking a peaceful demonstration of ten thousand indigenous who had blocked the road Panamericana.
Leonardo Chocué (Tierradentro), Eduardo Cotoina (Tierradentro) and Pablo Dagua (Corinto) have been arrested.
The commander of the armed forces on place, general Paéz Varón, affirmed that he had the order to commit a massacre.
We are facing extremely serious violation of human rights and crimes against humanity. We support the request of immediate protection raised at the Interamerican Court of Human Rights by the indigenous organizations. We call for respect and recognition for the indigenous movement, the immediate release of the arrested, and the immediate cessation of unlawful killings and other crimes against humanity. A fact-finding commission will be established on all these, whose results will be reported to the International Criminal Court, stressing the direct responsibility of President Uribe ad of the Governor of Cauca, González Mosquera.
Italian Association of Democratic Lawyers
European Association of Lawyers for Democracy and World Human Rights
International Association of Democratic Lawyers