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72nd FARC Member Murdered in Colombia Since Peace Agreement

Colombians protest against the murder of social leaders in Bogota.

Colombians protest against the murder of social leaders in Bogota. | Photo: EFE
teleSUR | September 27, 2018

The systematic targeting of social leaders and former FARC guerrilla fighters has become one of the main obstacles to peace in Colombia.

In Colombia, two former combatants of the demobilized Revolutionary Armed Forces of Colombia (FARC) were attacked in the Cauca department. One of them, John Faber Gomez, who was also a member of the National Protection Unit, died as a result of the wounds he sustained.

The armed attack took place after the Colombian government authorized the new Temporary Hamlet Zone for Normalization in the municipality of Patia, to replace the abandoned hamlet zone in Policarpa, Nariño.

The Common Alternative Revolutionary Force (FARC) party condemned the attack and demanded security guarantees from the government.

“Peace is in mourning. In the Cauca department, a member of the National Protection Unit and our party @FARC_EPueblo was murdered, 72 former combatants have already been murdered. #WeDemandTheRighttoLife #ThatPeaceDoesNotCostUsOurLives #WeWorkForPeace #TheyAreKillingUs,” Pablo Catatumbo tweeted Monday.

The systematic targeting of social leaders, human rights defenders, and former FARC guerrilla fighters has become one of the main obstacles to peace, especially because the state has failed to guarantee control over the territories left by the demobilized FARC.

In the framework of the United Nations General Assembly, the U.N. Secretary-General, Antonio Guterres, met with Colombian President Ivan Duque to ratify his commitment to the Colombian peace process and stress the urgency of providing security and development to conflict zones.

Cauca, Nariño, and Antioquia are the departments that record the highest number of murders. Human rights organizations have denounced the country’s General Attorney’s Office for lacking an investigation strategy that takes into account the existence of paramilitary groups, and the systematic nature of the murders against former combatants and social leaders.

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