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Devant le consulat colombien (1010, Sherbrooke Ouest, au coin de Metcalfe)

This March 6th, in Colombia and elsewhere in the world, an homage will be made to victims of paramilitarism and state crimes. Project Accompaniment and Solidarity Colombia is calling a rally at 12:30 in front of the Colombian consulate (1010 Sherbrooke West, corner of Metcalfe) to then march in the streets of Montreal.

In Colombia, nearly 4 million people have been forcibly displaced within the country, mostly due to paramilitary death squads. Between 1982 and 2005, paramilitaries perpetrated 3 500 massacres and stole more than 6 million hectares of land for the implementation of exploitative economic mega-projects. Since 2002 and their supposed 'demobilization', they have assassinated 600 people each year. During the first term of current President Álvaro Uribe Vélez (2002-2006), at least 11 084 people were assassinated or 'disappeared' for political reasons. According to their own statements, paramilitaries control 35% of the national Parliament while more than 60 functionaries of all levels are accused of collaborating with paramilitaries, in the sadly infamous scandal of "para-politics". Just recently in January 2008 alone, paramilitaries committed 2 massacres, 9 forced disappearances and 8 homicides while the army perpetrated 16 extra-legal executions. To this date, the immense majority of these crimes go unpunished.

We must equally denounce the Free Trade Agreement that is currently being negotiated between the Harper government and Colombia, an agreement that only reinforces the current dynamic in Colombia by prioritizing policies of peasant extermination and exploitation of natural resources and land.

We manifest our solidarity with the victims of State Terrorism in Colombia for the liberation of political prisoners, justice, true reparation for the victims of the conflict, the effective dismantlement of paramilitary structures, the restitution of lands to displaced peoples, an end to impunity, that the Colombian government to stop criminalizing and repressing human rights organizations and Colombian resistance communities, that the Colombian government recognize the existence of the conflict within the country and for a negotiated political solution to the social armed conflict.

We also invite you on March 6th at 6:00 PM to the Simon Bolivar Cultural Centre (394 boul. De Maisonneuve west, metro Place-des-Arts) to a panel-forum being held on State Terrorism, paramilitarism and impunity in Colombia.

Contact : 514-966-8421

No more executions and disappearances No more forced displacements No more paramilitaries, No more state crimes