The International Office for Human Rights Action on Colombia

International statement condemning attacks and threats against Afro-Colombian and indigenous leaders

The European organisations and networks who have signed this statement reject the murder attempt against leaders from Afro-Colombian collectives from the Cauca department ACONC, PCN and ASOM and threats against the indigenous women’s organisation Wayúu Wo

On 5 May, leaders from the Association of Community Councils of Northern Cauca (Asociación de Consejos Comunitarios del Norte del Cauca – ACONC), the Black Communities Process (Proceso de Comunidades Negras – PCN) and the Association of Women of African Descent from Northern Cauca (Asociación de mujeres afrodescendientes del Norte del Cauca – ASOM), were the victims of an attempted murder and massacre when guns and a grenade were fired in the village of Lomitas, in the municipality of Santander de Quilichao, Cauca department.

France 24 reports about Humanitarian Space (Buenaventura-Colombia)

International attention following the critical Human Rights violations in Buenaventura. Watch the reportage by Pascale Mariani, Juan Orozco and Fernade Van Tets (France 24).

The reportage is followed by English analysis of Antonio Sampaio (The international Institute for Strategic Studies). Also available in French by Jean Jacques Kourliandsky (IRIS sur les Questions Ibériques)

The international community must act to protect Colombian indigenous peoples from violence and killings

Of 102 indigenous peoples, 66 are at imminent risk of extinction. August 9 marked the International Day of Indigenous Peoples. However, the situation of indigenous peoples in Colombia does not leave much to celebrate.

According to the National Indigenous Organisation of Colombia (ONIC), between 2009 and 2012, 438 indigenous people were killed and more than were 22,000 forcibly displaced. Between January and July 2013, 23 were killed and 1,506 displaced. The ONIC reports that 66 indigenous people are about to disappear, some with populations of less than 500 inhabitants, 18 with less than 200 and 10 made up less than 100 individuals. The ONIC also reports that indigenous peoples are “victims of a genocide that is forcing cultural and physical extermination”. The organisation also notes that “the situation of violence and destruction is intensified through killings, enforced disappearances, forced displacement, forced recruitment, sexual violence, threats and other crimes, affecting the 102 indigenous peoples in Colombia both collectively and individually, and causing them serious harm”. Only 2% of the Colombian population is indigenous, yet they account for 7% of internally displaced persons (CODHES). According to UNDP figures, 70% of Colombian indigenous children suffer from chronic malnutrition, and 63% of the indigenous population lives below the poverty line. This is despite the wealth of natural resources in indigenous territories.

Free, prior and informed consultation must be a fundamental condition before any projects are implemented in indigenous peoples and afro-Colombian communities’ territories

The EU must take steps to develop and implement a binding normative framework to ensure respect for and protection of the human rights of communities affected by projects implemented by European companies.

Brussels, April 26, 2013: on April 24, the Human Rights Subcommittee of the European Parliament – part of the Committee on Foreign Affairs – hosted an important hearing on extractive industries and indigenous peoples.

We support the indigenous peoples of Cauca in their peaceful resistance and search for peace

Serious violations of the civilian population´s human rights and infractions of International Humanitarian Law, in confrontations between the FARC and the Colombian Army.

Oidhaco supports the decision of the indigenous peoples of the Cauca department in the south-west of Colombia who, after suffering renewed serious human rights violations and infractions of IHL, have decided to reject all armed presence in their lands.

Development – Environment and Human Rights in Colombia

Document redacted on the occasion of the hearing of the Committee on International Trade (INTA) of the European Parliament on the EU-Colombia-Peru Multiparty Agreement on 29 February 2012.

The document presents the situation with respect to the following topics: Poverty and inequality, Labour rights and violence against trade unions, Environment, Right to food, Lands, Indigenous, Peoples and Afro-Colombians, General human rights situation