Timeline for entries tagged “Afro-Descendant Communities”

A chronology of events related to peace, security, and human rights in Colombia.

March 4, 2020

  • Assailants in Cali kill Arley Hernán Chalá, a bodyguard of prominent Chocó social leader Leyner Palacios, who is not with him at the time. Chalá is shot 18 times outside his home. “This must have been a message for me and for our process,” says Palacios, a survivor of the 2002 Bojayá massacre who was forced to leave Chocó in February after receiving threats. The threats continued even after Palacios met with President Duque and foreign ambassadors in January.

Tags: Afro-Descendant Communities, Attacks on social leaders, Valle del Cauca

January 11, 2020

  • Visiting Bojayá, Chocó, President Duque promises to increase military presence and social investment in the battered municipality.
  • That day, Bojayá social leader Leyner Palacios, who had met with President Duque three days before, receives a truculent letter from the commander of the Titan Joint Task Force, a Chocó-based military unit. Palacios had denounced episodes of collusion between members of the security forces and Gulf Clan paramilitaries. In what he calls a “freedom of information request,” Commander Darío Fernando Cardona Castrillón asks Palacios to provide “names or surnames of the security-force members, and the place and date during which such illegal acts were committed, so that respective investigations may be initiated.”

Tags: Afro-Descendant Communities, Armed Groups, Army, Chocó, Civil-Military Relations, Gulf Clan, Military and Human Rights, Stabilization

January 8, 2020

  • Amid reports of 23 homicides of social leaders in December, a large-scale “Gulf Clan” paramilitary incursion in Bojayá, Chocó, and the murder of human rights defender Gloria Ocampo in Putumayo, the Presidency convenes a rare meeting of the National Security Guarantees Commission that was established by the peace accord.
  • Bojayá social leader Leyner Palacios, who denounced serious recent threats on his life, is invited to join the Commission’s meeting. Palacios is known nationally as a survivor of the 2002 FARC indiscriminate bombing that destroyed the village’s church, killing 79 people—including 5 of Palacios’s relatives—seeking refuge inside.
  • High Commissioner for Peace Miguel Ceballos voices doubt that 300 Gulf Clan members could be deployed all at once in Bojayá, as local groups have denounced.
Photo source: David Romo, Colombian Presidency
Photo source: David Romo, Colombian Presidency

Tags: Afro-Descendant Communities, Armed Groups, Attacks on social leaders, Gulf Clan, High Commissioner for Peace, National Security Guarantees Commission