Judge Luis Pérez of Colombia’s National Electoral Council has published accusations that retired Colombian police General Luis Poveda has in writing, called human rights activists in Colombia “rats” and “assassins” despite an ongoing crisis of assassinations of rights activists fighting for indigenous and afro-colombian welfare, and resisting crime.
According to Human Rights Watch, the current administration of President Ivan Duque is intentionally neglecting to protect human rights defenders, and the former General’s words came after Judge Perez forwarded a tweet regarding Colombia’s Peace Tribunal upping the count of “disappeared” victims of Colombia’s armed conflict from 2,000 to over 6,000 cases.
“No more defense of the murderous rats that today pose as human rights defenders, no more defense of evil and criminality with ornate writings”—General (ret) Luis Humberto Poveda.
Many supporters of current President Ivan Duque, and his political patron Alvaro Uribe choose to ignore the security crisis facing human rights activists in the country or attempt to characterize the activists as sympathizers with current or former communist insurgent groups, while in most cases, the opposite is true; the human rights defenders are resisting organized crime, whether from left-wing insurgents, right-wing paramilitary groups, or apolitical mafia groups.
President Duque has gone so far as to deny recent massacres in Colombia, euphemizing them with the novel term “Collective Homicides.”
En respuesta a este mensaje quien fuera Director de Protección de @PoliciaColombia hasta Mayo de 2020 el General Luis Humberto Poveda en mensaje de WhatsApp afirma que los defensores de derechos humanos somos “ratas asesinas” y “la voz de los criminales” ¿ Quién los forma ? https://t.co/zjHVorJEDMpic.twitter.com/hudQhjlvYZ
— Luis Guillermo Pérez (@LuisGPerezCasas) March 6, 2021