Human Rights Defender Killed every other Day  


A Human Rights Defender

Killed Every other Day in 2017 in Colombia

(Between 1 and 23 January 2017)


In the first 23 days of January 2017, 11 human rights defenders have been killed. One of those killed was Afro-Colombian human rights defender (HRD) Emilsen Manyoma and her partner Joe Javier Rodallega.



On 17 January 2017, the bodies of Afro-Colombian human rights defender (HRD) Emilsen Manyoma and her partner Joe Javier Rodallega were found in Buenaventura. They had been missing since Saturday 14 January 2017. Just a few days before their disappearance, Rodallega reported being threatened and said a truck had been circling Manyoma’s house (see video below).


The local NGO who works with the communities in this region of the country, the  Inter-Church Commission for Justice and Peace, an ecumenical human rights organisation and partner of ABColombia member Christian Aid,  reported that both bodies were severely wounded and that Rodallega’s hands had been tied.  Contagio Radio said that both bodies had been beheaded.


Emilsen Manyoma was a prominent leader in the Bajo Calima region, as well as an active member of the community network CONPAZ. She had been a brave and outspoken critic of right-wing paramilitary groups and the displacement of local communities by business interests. She denounced paramilitary control and drug trafficking operations in the Calima and San Juan Rivers, and the Buenaventura District, as well as, the lack of action and tolerances by the police of drug trafficking. [1]


During 2016 s part of the recently created Truth Commission, Emilsen Manyoma played a key role in documenting attacks on human rights leaders in the region.


References:


[1] Statement by: Comisión Intereclesial de Justicia y Paz,  Asesinada lideresa de CONPAZ, Emilsen Manyoma y su esposo, Buenaventura, Martes 17 de enero de 2017


Useful links:


5 August 2016

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