The Land of Fire – Colombian Communities Under Threat
Thursday 2 December, 18:30 – 20:30AI-UK Human Rights Action Centre, 17-25 New Inn Yard , EC2 3EA
Starting with a 5 minute video The Luis Carlos Pérez Lawyers’ Collective: helping small-scale farmers defend their human rights
Julia Figueroa / Judith Maldonado, Luis Carlos Pérez Lawyers’ Collective (CCALP)
Berenice Celeyta, Association for Reseach and Social Action (NOMADESC)
Andy Higginbottom , Colombia Solidarity Campaign
Rob Hawke, Peace Brigades International (PBI) UK Section
Louise Winstanley, ABColombia
Chair: Shane Enright, Amnesty International UK
Catatumbo, a remote hinterland in the north eastern region of Colombia protected for its biodiversity and indigenous cultural heritage, is also home to some of the largest untapped reserves of coal and oil on the planet, as well as a lucrative corridor for the production and trafficking of cocaine.
The Luis Carlos Perez Lawyer’s Collective (CCALCP), supports grassroots organisations in the region with legal advice and training, and advocates on a national and international level to raise awareness about the socio-economic impact of armed violence and large scale extractive projects in the region. Despite enjoying the support of the international community, the lawyers of CCALCP continue to suffer routine threats, robbery, and harassment from illegal armed groups, and have been the victims of illegal state surveillance.
NOMADESC – the Association for Research and Social Action is based in the Valle del Cauca Department, and plays a key role in investigating rights abuses in the region and has empowered hundreds through a broad rights-based approach to development and advocacy.
Berenice Celeyta is particularly interested in the impact of large government projects, or multinational companies operating in the area and how they affect the human rights of local indigenous populations.