Another Indigenous Human Rights Activist Killed in Colombia
Alicia Lopez Guisao, a leader of Colombia’s Asokinchas community, helped distribute food to Indigenous and Afro-descendant communities.
Colombian Indigenous and campesino leader Alicia Lopez Guisao was killed in Medellin on Thursday, adding to the growing list of recently murdered human rights activists in the South American country.
The number of social and human rights defenders killed in the last 14 months now stands at at least 120, according to a Friday press release from the Defense of the People.
“The retreat of the FARC from the zones where they previously exercised control has allowed for the entrance of new armed actors who fight for territorial and economic dominance,” states the report. This marks a concerning trend requiring immediate action since the attacks are “pertaining to groups with similar characteristics, and which occurred in the same period and geographic area,” it adds.
Guisao, who was shopping at a grocery store at 8:45 am local time, was shot repeatedly by two unknown gunmen who entered the store, El Tiempo reports.
The People’s Congress, the left-wing organization that Guisao worked for organizing Indigenous peasants, believes the gunmen may have been connected to right-wing paramilitary groups.
“With great sadness and indignation we received and transmitted the news of the murder of comrade Alicia Lopez Guisao,” The People’s Congress said in a statement.
“Her murder is an example of the fact that the right-wing organizations that operate today in the city of Medellin are the same paramilitaries who have murdered others in recent years.”