Week of violent deaths in Arauca

News from Colombia | on: Wednesday, 5 November 2014

Within the last week six people are known to have been assassinated in the department of Aracua and at least another three have disappeared. In one region a group of armed men dressed as civilians, probably paramilitaries, have been seen on numerous occasions.

On the 28th October Jose Rolando Sosa was killed on the bank of the river Arauca. The corpse of a man who is yet to be identified was found in the same area on the same day. The body of Jose Luis Diaz Ospina was found by farmers on the morning of 1st November. On the 2nd November another two people were killed in Arauca. Arnulfo Sucerquia Lopez, a farmer, was killed in the early hours of the 2nd November. Carlos Alexander Castaneda Ramirez, a 33 year old man, killed later on the same day. On the 4th November a 35 year old was shot in broad daylight in Arauquita.

In addition to these murders a 22 year old man who was under house arrest in Arauquita was kidnapped from his home and two female relatives disappeared when they were travelling along the Saravena highroad. Their families have released a plea to whoever knows where they are to send them back to their families.

A local human rights organisation, the Joel Sierra Foundation, have joined these families in asking that civilians be left out of the armed conflict and that political solutions to the conflict be pursued instead. They have also requested that the authorities look into these recent incidents and help to protect the rights of the people living in the area.



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