The Electoral Observation Mission (MOE) of Colombia reported this Friday that with 581 violent acts against political, social and community leaders, the pre-electoral period of the 2021-2022 legislative elections represents the most violent of the last 12 years in the nation.
In this sense, the entity specified that in relation to the pre-electoral period of 2018, aggression against leaders rose by 109 percent; thus the figures indicate that the rates of violence are on the rise since the 2019 elections.
"This increase in violence against leaders is also framed in a context of reconfiguration of the conflict, characterized by a consolidation of multiple illegal armed groups, benefiting from the State's inability to occupy the territories," said the director of the MOE, Alejandra Barrios.
Accordingly, the executive stated that in relation to the period from 2020 to 2021, for the pre-electoral stage of 2022, the actions of armed gangs increased by 19 percent, reporting 59 criminal operations.
#Colombia | Organized political violence increased by 70% last year, with over 1,000 reported events. More than half were attacks on civilians. Overall, this is the highest rate of violence recorded in the country since the start of ACLED coverage in 2018. https://t.co/5Xh0qrMfdR pic.twitter.com/Txya2m4yEC— Armed Conflict Location & Event Data Project (@ACLEDINFO) May 4, 2022
Thus, for example, eight terrorist acts, the blocking of 11 roads, 10 vehicles set on fire, the closure of 23 transport terminals, the murder of a social leader and acts of intimidation were recorded.
According to the institute, during the pre-electoral period of 2022 there were armed strikes of the National Liberation Army in 12 departments of the country. Alejandra Barrios stated that "this context evidences the need for the government to adopt security measures and schemes that respond to the logic of collective protection and take into consideration the ethnic and territorial characteristics of its beneficiaries".