Colombia: 20 Social Leaders Killed in the First 20 days of 2020

January 28, 2020

Colombia was the country where the most social leaders were killed in 2019, according to the Irish NGO Front Line Defenders, and is also the country with the most internal displacement, a record that has been set for four consecutive years from 2015 to 2019.

The bloodbath of social leaders that ended in 2019 has continued into 2020, setting off alarms in the United Nations.

A spokeswoman for the Office of the UN High Commissioner for Human Rights said the agency is concerned about the persistent killing of social leaders in Colombia and urged the national government to prevent it.

However, that has done little to abate the murders when social leader Jorge Luis Betancourt was murdered on January 13 in the municipality of Montelíbano, in the department of Córdoba, in northern Colombia. At about the same time indigenous and social leader Jáiber Alexánder Quitumbo was murdered in Toribío, Cauca, in south-western Colombia.

Colombia is not by chance the most dangerous country for indigenous and social leaders. The reality is that at least 20 social leaders were killed in the first 20 days of 2020 which is a clear indication that it is not coincidence but a pattern of purpose-designed by the policy of the US-backed Duque government.

Source: teleSur, translation Resumen Latinoamericano, North America bureau