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Tuesday, 22 November 2016 00:00

UN in Colombia concerned about violence and murders in conflict-affected areas

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Bogotá, November 21 - The United Nations Country Team and the UN Mission in Colombia express concern about violent actions, including recent killings, targeting social leaders in several conflict-affected areas.

The United Nations understands the fears voiced by affected social organizations and their call for urgent action to prevent the escalation of violence, which undermines confidence in the prospect of a stable and lasting peace on the eve of the expected signing of the Final Agreement between the Government of Colombia and the Revolutionary Armed Forces of Colombia-People’s Army (FARC-EP).

We support the decision of President Juan Manuel Santos to convene a high-level meeting of the National Human Rights Commission and the Attorney General's decision to advance investigations into the latest facts presented. We hope that speedy investigations, as requested by the Office of the Ombudsman, and the measures that may be taken by the various State agencies, will contribute to protect the civilian population and create greater tranquility among communities.

The Final Peace Agreement provides for the implementation of several measures aimed precisely at ensuring security for social organizations’ male and female leaders and human rights defenders as well as security for political action, in particular through the installation of the National Commission on Security Guarantees.

The Office of the United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights is currently conducting a series of field verification missions. Following their completion, the public will be informed of the results.

The United Nations Agencies, Funds and Programmes as well as the UN Mission in Colombia reiterate their commitment to protect the civilian population, within the framework of their respective mandates, and to provide continued support to build peace and respond to the expectations of the Colombian population, particularly in the conflict-affected territories.

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