Today, an unprecedented number of human rights, Afro-Colombian, indigenous, religious and women's groups urged the United States Congress to give priority attention to the gross violence that displaced minorities and women face in Colombia.The Washington Office on Latin America (WOLA) along with over 50 US organizations and activists sent a letter to Congress in favor of US House Resolution 1224, which supports measures in Colombia to correct the systematic oppression and root causes of violence that internally displaced Afro-Colombians, indigenous peoples and women suffer on a daily basis.
"All of these signatory groups are calling attention to the millions of Colombians who live a life of tragedy. Afro-Colombians and indigenous persons, including the over 4 million internally displaced, are violently chased out of their lands, harassed and even killed," said Gimena Sanchez, WOLA's Senior Associate for Colombia. "This movement of support for Colombia wants the US Congress to get more involved now." The letter comes just days after the April 8th massacre of eight Afro-Colombian miners allegedly by paramilitary forces in northern Cauca, Colombia -- an area where WOLA has visited and monitored closely.