Community leader, Tulio Sandoval Chía, 61, was murdered by unknown men on the evening of Friday, 11 January 2020, at his house in the village of La Silla in the north-eastern municipality of Santander.
The killing was condemned by the Catatumbo Peasant Association (Ascamcat), who pointed out that Sandoval was coordinator of the peasant committee of La Silla village and was part of the programme to replace illicit crops. He was also a member of the Patriotic Union movement.
A spokesperson for Ascamcat highlighted the fact that fifteen of their members have been killed in recent years. None of those killings have as yet been resolved.
This murder follows that of community leader Jhon Freddy Álvarez, who was shot dead on the previous Saturday in the municipality of Algeciras, department of Huila (south), where three days before they also assassinated the former treasurer of the Community Action Board, Mireya Hernández.
And the Tuesday before that community leader Gloria Ocampo, 37, was also murdered along with another person in a rural area of Putumayo department, on the border with Ecuador, and which was the first murder of a social leader in 2020, in Colombia.
The head of the United Nations Verification Mission for the peace process in Colombia, Carlos Ruiz Massieu, said in a recent statement that the main challenge for the Colombian state is to improve the security of demobilised FARC members, social leaders and human rights defenders.