Colombia ranked first in the list of countries with the highest number of murdered environmental leaders in 2019. This was confirmed by the annual report of Global Witness, a British NGO that every year makes visible the climate crisis and threats against environmental defenders.
Jaime Monge, a 62-year-old environmental leader who was assassinated on August 18 in Villacarmelo, near the Farallones de Cali National Park, is an example of the serious problem that Colombia faces in this matter: 64 land defenders have been killed.
According to the Global Witness report, agribusiness, oil, logging and mining are the main causes of attacks on environmental leaders.
“These murders are being perpetrated by people interested in natural resources, in control of the territories, who want to go to the lands of the Amazon or the Pacific, community territories, black communities or in general ethnic communities,” says Camilo González , President of the Institute of Studies for Development and Peace.
After Colombia, the Philippines, Brazil and Mexico are the countries where environmental leaders are killed the most.