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Sandra Liliana Peña Chocué

WHRD, Governor
Indigenous reserve “La Laguna-Siberia SAT Tama kiwe”

Sandra Liliana Peña Chocué was an indigenous authority of the Nasa people, woman human rights defender and governor of the indigenous reserve “La Laguna-Siberia SAT Tama kiwe” in Cauca. She stood out in her community for her sense of leadership, and at a young age she was assigned as the Education Programme Policy Coordinator of the reserve. In her role as governor she dedicated her work to clear the reserve of illicit crops. Sandra was assassinated by four unknown individuals while she was preparing herself ahead of an important meeting with officials from the Colombian government in the city of Popayán. The Regional Indigenous Council of Cauca (CRIC) reported that prior to her killing, the woman human rights defender had spoken out against the increase in illicit crop cultivations and subsequently received threats from illegal groups that exercise territorial control in the department of Cauca, some of which were reported to the authorities.


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.