International Civil Society Organisations in Alert for Assassinated Social Leaders and Worsening Humanitarian Crisis in Colombia

As International Organisation we express our profound concern regarding the severe deterioration of the armed conflict in Colombia, which has already in 2020, taken the lives of 23 people, including four women and two ex-combatants in the process of reincorporation.

This serious humanitarian situation is putting the sustainability of the Colombian peace process in jeopardy. Conveyed, amongst other things, in the massive displacement of approximately 4,000 people due to incursions by illegal armed actors, in the municipalities of Tumaco (department of Nariño), Nuquí (department of Chocó) and Tarazá (department of Antioquia); together with the confinement of the communities of Jiguamiandó, Curvaradó and Pogue in the department of Chocó due to the presence of armed actors; and, the massacre on 11 January 2020, in Jamundí (department of Valle del Cauca) that cost the lives of at least five people.

Recent information, in an important national media publication, on a possible new case of the use of illegal interceptions by State intelligence and cybersecurity services against peace negotiators, human rights activists, Senators, journalists and magistrates of the Supreme Court of Justice, adds to this atmosphere of anxiety, uncertainty and fear in Colombia.

We urge the Colombian government to take effective measures that go beyond individual protection of threatened persons, or the militarization of the territories. To the full implementation of the Peace Accord and embracing the public policy proposal presented by human rights organisations in the National Commission for Security Guarantees, the ‘Dismantling of Successors Organisations of Paramilitarism and their Support Networks’, which has been endorsed by the Office of the United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights and the United Nations Verification Mission. Without a doubt, this would contribute to moving towards definitively overcoming the armed conflict and the construction of peace in Colombia.

We encourage the International Community to continue accompanying communities and human rights defenders, as well as, supporting their invitation to the United Nations Special Adviser on the Prevention of Genocide, Mr. Adama Dieng, for an urgent official visit to Colombia.
As International Civil Society Organisations we reaffirm our solidarity with the families and communities affected by these crimes and our commitment to a political solution to the armed conflict. We urge legal and non-legal armed actors to respect the fundamental rights of the civilian population and international humanitarian law.

International Community in Alert for a Colombia in Peace
27 January 2020