Luis Alfredo Socarrás Pimienta, an indigenous leader with the Wayúu tribe, was murdered outside his home in Riohacha, Colombia on July 27th. A human rights activist and leader of several demonstrations against the abuse of indigenous people and for better living conditions, Socarrás Pimienta was thought to have been shot dead by a hitman who then fled the scene. Following the murder leaflets were given out citing the names of murderers’ next targets which included a dozen more members of the Wayúu tribes, according to Survival International.
The Inter-American Commission on Human Rights (IACHR), under the Organization of American States (OAS), condemned the murder and urged Colombian authorities to track down Socarrás Pimienta’s killers.
In addition the IACHR also called for Colombia “to attend to the needs for protection and security of those who defend the rights of the indigenous peoples of Colombia, to ensure that crimes such as this one do not happen again” in a press release.
According to Survival International, over1,400 indigenous people have been killed since 2002 in Colombia.
The Wayúu tribe is a matrilineal society which speaks a unique language, Wayunaiki, and inhabits the Guajira state of Colombia.
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