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Punished for protesting

Farmers and indigenous peoples in Latin America are subject to government and military sanctions.

The security situation of human rights defenders and social leaders from various sectors in Colombia is very serious, according to Latin American Groups in Norway (LAG). It is not only the army and guerrilla movements that are behind the assault on civil society. Social protest meets violence and criminalization of rebel police and intelligence service.

"Our government allows multinational companies to plunder our lands without us having anything to say," said Martha Lucía Rodriguez, a farmer and activist from Colombia, when Ny Tid meets her in Oslo. "Our main concern is that farmers should be recognized as individuals with rights, and that these rights should be enshrined in law," she continues. Rodriguez works for the National Network for Farmers in Colombia (CNA), and is in Norway as a participant in LAG's exchange project for grassroots activists.

Martha Lucía Rodriguez (left) and Angélica Ortíz Sales (this year's Globalization Conference, on the criminalization of social protests in Latin America. PHOTO: CTH / MODERN TIMES Martha Lucía Rodriguez (left) and Angélica Ortíz Sales (this year's Globalization Conference, on the criminalization of...

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Carima Tirillsdottir Heinesen
Former journalist for MODERN TIMES.

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