Murdered social leaders are 5th and 6th victims in Chocó so far in 2018

Authorities in Chocó, western Colombia, have confirmed the death of Wilson Arnulfo Quetama Hurtado, just one week after Claudio Chávez, another member of the same community, was also murdered. They are the fifth and sixth social leaders killed in Chocó so far in 2018.

Wilson was a leader of the Victims’ Association, which campaigns for compensation for victims of the armed conflict, in the municipality of San José del Palmar. He was also a coordinator for the community council which advocated increased political participation for civil society groups marginalised from the political system.

Chocó, one of the poorest regions of Colombia, has been heavily affected by political violence and a chronic lack of state intervention or development. Since the peace agreement was signed in November 2016, it has experienced high levels of instability as armed groups compete to assume control of illicit activities in the region and of territories vacated by the demobilised FARC, which has disarmed and reformed as a political party.

At least 30 social leaders have been killed in Colombia so far in 2018.