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Colombian Army Forced to Retreat – Why did Armed Peasants Open Fire?

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COLOMBIA – In Guaviare Colombia, peasants fired upon a follow-up military incursion onto their land, driving the military unit into retreat. 

The peasants had pushed to the bring of destitution by the Colombian Army who had been destroying their crops upon the orders competing large agribusiness land-owners. 

 

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Local media report this Friday of a new attack by the Colombian Army on peasants in the department of Guaviare, with the aim of forcing them to eradicate their crops. 

The attack occurred in the Guayabero region, in the departmental jurisdiction of Guaviare, where the military forces were pushed back by the armed inhabitants of the area. 

First giving warnings to the military, the peasants drove away the members of the Army that were deployed in the area, firing warning shots over their heads. 

In the midst of the Covid-19 pandemic, since April 25 the Army began forced crop eradication work in various rural areas.

The Peace Agreement signed by the Government and the Revolutionary Armed Forces of Colombia-People’s Army (FARC – EP), contemplates a program of voluntary substitution of illicit crops such as coca. However, the Iván Duque government has favored forced eradication and not voluntary replacement. 

In recent days, the Peasant Ethnic and Community Alliance of Guaviare and Sur del Meta in Colombia denounced the abuse of peasants by the Army, the police and other bodies, who have used violence and intimidation to fulfill their objectives. 

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