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Two other social leaders killed in Colombia

December 25, 2019


Two other social leaders have been killed in Colombia in the last hours, in the context of the wave of violence that the country is suffering after the signing of the peace agreement between the Government and the extinct FARC guerrillas.

One of the victims is Lucy Villarreal, a social leader from the city of Tumaco (southwest), who was killed on Christmas Eve when she was leaving a workshop with children, as reported on Wednesday by the governor of Nariño, Camilo Romero, on Twitter.

Two other social leaders killed in Colombia
Two other social leaders killed in Colombia

“The sadness is immense. This news tarnishes Christmas,” said Romero, who has referred to Villarreal as “leader, carnival cultist and defender of life.”

On the other hand, Reinaldo Carrillo, a member of the National Association of Peasant Users (ANUC), has been shot dead at dawn on Wednesday in the town of Pitalito, department of Huila (center).

Colombian authorities are already investigating whether his murder is related to his participation in several cases of land restitution, according to local press reports.

“Unfortunately, Colombia woke up to the news of two social leaders killed on Christmas Day,” commented the Revolutionary Alternative Force of the Common, the political party that emerged from the FARC, on Twitter.

These two deaths are added to those of Natalia Jiménez and Rodrigo Monsalve, a couple of environmental activists who disappeared on Friday, when they were heading to La Guajira (north) to celebrate their honeymoon, and whose bodies were found on Monday with their heads hooded, tied hands and grace shots.

More than 160 social leaders and human rights defenders have been killed in 2019 in Colombia, according to local NGO figures, who warn that there could be many more.

Colombia suffers a wave of violence since the signing of the peace agreement in 2106, mainly due to the struggle between rival groups to seize former FARC businesses, such as drug trafficking, extortion or illegal mining.

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