Threats against human rights defender Luz Marina Arteaga

Subject: Protection scheme for human rights defender Luz Marina Arteaga in the town of “El Porvenir”, department of Meta

The situation faced by community leaders had worsened in Vichada in no small part due to lack of compliance with the order of the Constitutional Court: The Right of Access to Land by the Peasant Population, Order SU 426 of August 11, 2016, of which Ms. Luz Marina Arteaga was one of the leading plaintiffs. The order of the Court, SU426, makes provision for the return to the peasant farmers in El Porvenir of their land, which has not yet been fulfilled despite the order having being issued in 2016. This had allowed the invasion of their land by others.

We urgently request that the UNP provides Ms. Arteaga with protection measures she has been requesting. In order to achieve this it will be important to coordinate with the appropriate local authorities to ensure that Ms. Arteaga has an enabling environment, that allows her to return, and to continue her human rights work.

To highlight some of the facts, which I am sure you are aware of, on 16 April 2019, Ms. Arteaga received a telephone death threat from the neo-paramilitary commander of the group known as “Los Rastrojos”. At that time, Ms. Arteaga requested protection measures from the National Protection Unit.

On 2 October she was informed that strangers had her house under surveillance, and were asking about her whereabouts. Due to the high risk of threats and persecution, Ms. Arteaga was forced to leave and could not return.

The ABColombia 2018 Delegation of Parliamentarians visited Matarraton, El Porvenir and spoke with Luz Marina Arteaga