The indigenous community found the bodies of the minors in the vicinity of the town of El Estrecho and proceeded to watch over and bury them. Manuela Cano/PNN
This Saturday, May 20, the National Organization of Indigenous Peoples of the Colombian Amazon (OPIAC) denounced the death of four indigenous minors at the hands of armed groups and who, according to the organization, were escaping from being recruited.
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In its complaint, the organization directly blamed the Carolina Ramírez front, of the Central General Staff, belonging to the Farc dissidents.
They indicated that the minors were victims of forced recruitment and, when trying to escape from the guerrilla camps, located on the border between Amazonas and Caquetá, they were assassinated by the subversives. The indigenous community found the bodies of the minors in the vicinity of the town of El Estrecho and proceeded to watch over and bury them.
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Opiac repudiated the facts, assuring that the indigenous communities “have constantly suffered violations of human rights and violations of international humanitarian law.”
Given what happened, the Minister of the Interior, Luis Fernando Velasco, spoke, who assured that together with the Criminal Investigation Directorate and Interpol of the National Police and the Colombian Institute of Family Welfare (ICBF) they will move this May 20 to the area to deal with the situation.
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The foregoing, in response to the same complaint from Opiac in which it requested the Government to be present in the place and take measures and actions that guarantee their safety.
Similarly, he pointed out that a special security council will be created to clarify the facts and find those responsible for the massacre of minors.
“The Vice Minister of the Interior, the director of the DIJÍN Police and the deputy director of the ICBF leave this afternoon for Putumayo to accompany the security council. The murder of minors is more than intolerable and those responsible must answer to justice”.
President Gustavo Petro also referred to what happened. He expressed his outrage through his Twitter account:
President Petro tweets about the massacre of indigenous minors in Caquetá and Amazonas. @petrogustavo/Instagram
“The murder of 4 indigenous minors in Putumayo is an atrocious crime, a slap to peace that violates the foundations of International Humanitarian Law. I have called an extraordinary security meeting to announce measures against these events,” said the president.
The Ombudsman’s Office has issued several alerts warning of the risks of clashes between illegal armed groups, who dispute control of territories in Caquetá. In this regard, this was the most recent call from the entity:
“With Imminent Early Warning 018, we are warning about the current risk situation for the civilian population in the area of the mountain range of the municipality of San Vicente del Caguan. It is crucial that the State take urgent actions to guarantee the life, integrity, security and freedom of the civilian population”, indicated the Ombudsman, Carlos Camargo Assis.
Carlos Camargo Assis, Ombudsman. Photo: Ombudsman’s Office.
The alert also states that the populations most at risk of being caught in the fighting are the Campesino Reserve Zone, the Óscar Mondragón Territorial Space for Training and Reincorporation (ETCR) and the indigenous reservations of Altamira and Banderas del Recaibo, located in the municipality of San Vicente del Caguan (Caquetá).
According to the Ombudsman’s Office, so far in May there has been a disappearance of a 37-year-old man, the murder of another person and the presence of armed men, who identified themselves as members of the Farc dissidents. Added to this is the murder of the four indigenous minors denounced by Opiac.
During May, there are two armed confrontations between the dissident fronts of the Farc Segunda Marquetalia and the so-called Central General Staff; the first took place on May 12 in the village of Las Perlas and the second, on May 15 in the sector of the village of Las Morras. Similarly, the two events that occurred in Caquetá.