Washington, D.C., March 7, 2011—The Inter-American Commission on Human Rights (IACHR) deplores the continuing situation of threats, harassment, and murders of family members of María del Socorro Mosquera Londoño and Mery Naranjo Jiménez, human rights defenders in Colombia. Both women have been beneficiaries of IACHR precautionary measures since 2004 and of provisional measures issued by the Inter-American Court of Human Rights since 2006, without the State having adopted effective measures for protection. This is part of a pattern of persecution and lack of protection being faced by these human rights defenders in the Comuna 13 area of Medellín, Colombia.

María del Socorro Mosquera Londoño and Mery Naranjo Jiménez are human rights defenders and community leaders who have carried out a sustained effort to denounce agents of the State for their alleged participation in grave human rights violations against the people of Comuna 13 in Medellín. Based on the threats received and the context of violence in Comuna 13, the IACHR granted precautionary measures on October 22, 2004, to protect the life and physical integrity of María del Socorro Mosquera Londoño, Mery Naranjo Jiménez, and the latter woman’s family members. With the acts of harassment and aggression continuing, the Commission asked the Inter-American Court for provisional measures, which were granted for these same beneficiaries on July 5, 2006. (suite…)