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"We cannot allow that the armed groups' intolerance continues to affect the citizens' lives and well-being," the Social and Popular Political Mass Movement stated.
On Tuesday, Colombia’s Social and Popular Political Mass Movement (CPSMM) reported that a car bomb attack against the Joel Sierra Human Rights Foundation (JSHRF) in Saravena municipality in the Arauca department killed one citizen and injured three others.
"We cannot allow that the intolerance of illegal armed groups continues to affect the peace of the Saravena municipality’s community," the JSHRF stated, adding that the attack caused significant economic losses since it destroyed houses, shops, and government buildings.
Around 22:15, a white van parked near the foundation’s building, where social leaders were giving a workshop on human rights. Upon blowing up the vehicle, the attackers fled the scene shooting at the people inside the establishment.
The Arauca Governor Alejandro Navas promised to lead an extraordinary security council to speed the apprehension of the crime's perpetrators, whose identity remains unknown.
A 14-year-old Indigenous activist in Colombia was killed after reportedly being ambushed while protecting Indigenous land.
At least 145 rights defenders in the country were killed in 2021, says a govt count, including Indigenous leaders, farmers & union organizers.
The Arauca department currently undergoes a humanitarian crisis due to paramilitary groups, which seek to extort the population to gain new territories for their drug trafficking activities. On Jan. 5, President Ivan Duque deployed two 600-soldiers Army battalions, which were supposed to boost intelligence and counter-intelligence operations in the area.
The JSHRF denounced that this military deployment has only served to guarantee the oil infrastructure of the transnational companies but not to protect the population.
"We emphatically call on the armed groups to bring the civilian population out of the conflict since it deserves to leave in peace,” the JSHRF representative Sonia Lopez highlighted.