Colombia: Peasant leaders who oppose business projects are arrested
During the month of December, three peasant leaders from Nariño, Bolívar and Meta were detained, all of them recognized for their work in defending the territory and their opposition to business projects. The detainees are: Adelso José Gallo Tozcano, Teofilo Acuña and Robert Daza. Adelso Gallo has led struggles against oil companies such as Repsol, Oxy and BP in Arauca and has even denounced these companies internationally. Teofilo Acuña, who is a spokesperson for the Interlocution Commission of Sur Bolivar, Centro y Sur del Cesar, has led struggles in defense of the territory, especially through opposition to Anglogold Ashanti mining projects, it is important to note that Acuña was victim of a judicial set-up in 2011 and was acquitted by the 84th Prosecutor of the Human Rights and International Humanitarian Law Unit of Cartagena, which recognized that the exercise of his rights and those of his union was stigmatized by members of the public force. Finally, Robert Daza, a member of the Comité de Integración del Macizo Colombiano, is recognized for his support in the creation of agroecological transition projects. The BHRRC invited Oxy, BP, Repsol and AgloGold Ashanti to send us their comments on these arrests through the Business Response Mechanism. AngloGold Ashanti and BP responded. Oxy and Repsol did not.