52 Activists Killed in Colombia This Year, Authorities Report

A total of 52 human rights activists and community leaders have been killed in the first quarter of the year, according to a report from the Ombudsman’s office.

According to the report, 13 were killed in January, 18 in February, and 21 in March.

The figure is a 48.5% increase compared to the 35 that occurred last year in the same period.

A total of 145 murders of activists occurred for the entire year of 2021.

Of the 52 killed, 48 were men and four were women.

The victims included 28 community leaders, nine indigenous leaders, four farming leaders, and three student leaders.

According to human rights monitors, Colombia is one of the world’s most dangerous countries for activists.

“The homicides against social leaders and human rights defenders seriously affect the foundations of democracy because they are the ones who consecrate their lives to defend the rights of their communities,” Ombudsman Carlos Camargo said, as quoted by Colombian newspaper El Tiempo.

“For this reason, the State cannot lower its guard to protect them and provide them with the tools that facilitate their admirable work,” Camargo added.

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