The raramuri indigenous leader and land defender, Julian Carrillo, was killed by a group of armed men Wednesday in the municipality of Coloradas de la Virgen in Chihuahua, reported Amnesty International. Carrillo was a human rights champion and a strong defender of the lands and territories of the indigenous people from the Sierra Tarahumara in Mexico.
Indigenous Wixarika Leader and Activist Murdered in Mexico
Erika Guevara Rosas, director for the Americas of Amnesty International said, "Once again it is demonstrated that without changes that address the structural causes of violence against human rights defenders, the provision of a police escort or a telephone is not enough to stop the wave of violence faced by those who dare raise their voices to defend their territory," reported Amnesty International.
Carrillo was killed on the night of October 24 by unidentified armed men, in Coloradas de la Virgen where he was a communal leader. Five other members of his family have been killed over the last two years.
On February 5, 2016, his son Víctor Carrillo was murdered; On March 31, 2017, one of his nephews, Antonio Alberto Quiñones, was murdered; On July 30, 2017 another of his nephews, Guadalupe Carrillo Polanco, was murdered; and, finally, on July 1, 2018, his son-in-law, Francisco Chaparro Carrillo, was murdered.
Amnesty International is urging the authorities to act immediately and put a halt on the killings of human rights defenders. "The murder of Julián Carrillo should not remain unpunished. It is imperative that the Mexican authorities identify the material and intellectual authors of this crime," said Erika Guevara Rosas
Rosas added, "The local and national authorities must take adequate protective measures immediately to protect the life and integrity of the family of Julián Carrillo and the members of the community, and to defend their right to the territory in Coloradas de La Virgen."
The community of Coloradas de la Virgen is in a judicial battle because there has been exploitation of natural resources in Ancestral Territories, which is prohibited by the Mexican Laws, if a consultation process is not carried out.
Julian Carrillo was killed just a few weeks after the community denounced the existence of a mining concession in its territory that was headed by three individuals. According to the community, this concession would have been granted without prior and informed consultation, Amnesty International reported.