Colombia: Pax Christi International signs onto letter from OIDHACO calling for support for the Living Rivers Movement
23/5/18 - NOTE: The following statement was issued in Brussels, 22 May 2018. Pax Christi International has signed onto this statement.
The international community must call for the protection of the Living Rivers Movement in the Antioquia department (Movimiento Ríos Vivos Antioquia) and an investigation into murders of the Movement's members.
The International Office for Human Rights - Action Colombia (OIDHACO) and the signatory organisations to this letter, would like to express their serious concerns to the European Union institutions, EU member States, Switzerland and Norway about the situation faced by the population affected by the Hidroituango development project in Colombia and about the Living Rivers Movement in the Antioquia department (Movimiento Ríos Vivos Antioquia), which is comprised of 15 associations of victims of the conflict; people affected by large-scale development projects; women and young people from the region where the project is located.
According to the Prevention and Protection Plan for the Movimiento Ríos Vivos Antioquia (MRVA) which the Movement developed with the support of the Interior Ministry, since 2013 and up until 1 March 2018, the MRVA suffered 151 security incidents, including the killings of two of its members. In light of these attacks committed by the state security forces, paramilitary groups and unknown perpetrators during evictions and peaceful protests, the MRVA requested guarantees from the Colombian State. In 2014 some of these collective measures were granted, however, they took more than two years to be partially implemented and are in need of urgent revision. The Colombian State has also granted individual protection measures to nine members of the MRVA and is studying the cases of five others. Recently, a group of Swiss Parliamentarians sent a letter to several Colombian State institutions1, urging them to implement the measures contained in the Prevention and Protection Plan...