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Ernesto Guasiruma

Indigenous Regional Organisation of Valle del Cauca (ORIVAC)

Ernesto Guasiruma was a leader of the Embera Chami reservation of the Las Garrapata Canyon in Valle del Cauca and a member of the Indigenous Regional Organisation of Valle del Cauca (ORIVAC). Ernesto left a very significant legacy for his tireless defense for the life and integrity of his indigenous community, severely hit by forced displacement. The indigenous leader was killed with a white weapon by two unknown men who opened fire at his home on March 23, 2020. His brother Omar Guasiruma was also killed in the attack, while other family members were seriously injured. The defender and his family were complying with the quarantine decreed by the Government by the time of the assault.


HRDs in Colombia work in a violent and unsafe environment. They are subjected to threats, intimidation, arbitrary detention, enforced disappearances, physical assaults, torture, killings, illegal searches of their homes and offices and stigmatisation as a result of their activities in defence of human rights.