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Colombia: Indigenous Guard of Cauca wins the 2020 Front Line Defenders Americas Award for Human Rights Defenders at Risk

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'Front Line Defenders Award for the Americas Region Presented to Guardia Indígena de Cauca', 8 October 2020

The Guardia Indígena de Cauca (Indigenous Guard of Cauca) has been named as the 2020 Americas Regional Winner of the Front Line Defenders Award for Human Rights Defenders at Risk. The organisation is honouring the defenders for their protection of indigenous communities and their rights, their territories and the environment, as well as the Guardia’s model of nonviolent collective protection... The Indigenous Guard of Cauca - Kiwe Thegnas (Defenders of Life and Territory), member of the organization Asociación de Cabildos Indígenas del Norte del Cauca (ACIN), CRIC branch, is a community life and ancestral resistance composed of women, men, boys and girls who defend their territories in a peaceful, unarmed way... Their communities have been subjected to multiple forms of violence resulting from the presence of armed actors, the drug trafficking economy and multinational exploitation... The Guardia represent a unique model of collective protection in one of the world’s most dangerous places to be a human rights defender. Throughout yeas of the armed conflict, the Guardia offered an unarmed, peaceful defence of their community, traditions, culture, way of live and Mother Nature. Despite the peace agreement, HRDs, including the Guardia, continue to face lethal attacks and extreme risk...