Tuesday, September 23, 2008

Stop the terror campaign in Colombia!

The South Australian State Committee of the Communist Party of Australia condemns the actions of the government of Colombia in mounting an increasingly aggressive witch hunt against its opponents. A terror campaign (known as "FARC-politics") has been launched to distract domestic and international attention away from the scandalous associations of leading government figures with ruthless paramilitary forces and the narcotics trade in Colombia. Leading opponents of the Uribe Government have been singled out for investigation and the very real threat of assassination. Among these is Carlos Lozano (pictured), the editor of the Colombian Communist Party's authoritative weekly newspaper, La Voz.

Lozano is well known for his efforts to secure a negotiated settlement of the social crisis and armed conflict besetting Colombia. During the term of President Uribe, paramilitaries have been emboldened to describe Lozano - a free citizen and a member of a legal party - as a "military objective" and an "accomplice of the FARC". Manipulated "evidence" alleged to have been found on the computer equipment belonging to murdered FARC commander Raul Reyes and removed from Ecuadorian territory after an incursion and bombardment in March this year is said to contain numerous emails from Lozano. Lozano was deeply involved in trying to secure the humanitarian exchange of prisoners held on both sides of the conflict.

It has been estimated that 150 Communists have been murdered since President Uribe took office in 2002. Manuel Cepeda, an earlier editor of Voz, was murdered on August 9, 1994. Colombia remains in the top three most dangerous countries in the world for journalists and the South Australian State Committee of the Communist Party of Australia joins the millions of voices around the world and the oppressed in Colombia in saying to the Colombian Government - "Enough is enough!". Stop the attacks on the political opposition in Colombia. Direct the energies currently being devoted to attacking the representatives of the workers and peasants of Colombia to finding a peaceful solution to the social crisis in Colombia.


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