• Urgent Action

Urgent Action: Protect Environmental Defenders at Risk (Colombia: UA 18.21)

February 16, 2021

On 8 February, unidentified persons distributed threatening pamphlets giving 72 hours for Luis Alberto González López to leave the territory before the military would place a target near his residence in the city of Barrancabermeja. Luis González López is the vice-president of FEDEPESAN, an organization that protects the environment in the Magdalena medio region (central Colombia). The pamphlet was signed by the National Liberation Army (ELN). Since September 2020, armed groups sent at least 5 threaening messages to the members of FEDEPESAN. We urge the Ministry of Interior to grant FEDEPESAN members collective protection measures in consultation and agreement with their members.

  1. Write a letter in your own words or using the sample below as a guide to one or both government officials listed. You can also email, fax, call or Tweet them.
  2. Click here to let us know the actions you took on Urgent Action 18.21. It’s important to report because we share the total number with the officials we are trying to persuade and the people we are trying to help.
Daniel Palacios Director of the Minister of interior Carrera 8 No. 7 – 83, Bogotá D.C., Colombia Email: [email protected]
Ambassador Francisco Santos Embassy of Colombia 1724 Massachusetts Ave NW, Washington DC 20036 Phone: 202 387 8338 Email: [email protected] Twitter: @ColombiaEmbUSA @PachoSantosC Facebook: @ColombiaEmbassyUS Salutation: Dear Ambassador

SAMPLE LETTER Dear Mr. Palacios, I am writing to express concern for the safety of the members  of the Federation of Artisanal, Environmental and Tourist Fishermen of the Department of Santander (Federación de Pescadores artesanales, ambientalistas, y turísticos del departamento de Santander, FEDEPESAN) an environmental organization that defends the water and ecosystems in their region. Since September 2020, their members received at least 5 threats to their lives, the last one  on 8 February, when unidentified persons distributed a threatening pamphlet near FEDEPESAN Vice President’s house, notifying him that he had 72 hours to leave the territory before becoming a target of the National Liberation Army, ELN. I urge you to grant FEDEPESAN members collective protection measurement, in consultation and in agreement with their members. Yours sincerely, [YOUR NAME] ADDITIONAL RESOURCES