First we went to the soldiers to demand that the peasants be released. But when we got to their place, around 5 pm, they had just been released. That’s when the farmers informed us that Oriolfo Sánchez had been killed earlier in the day, so we saw soldiers a little further away. They walked with a stretcher, on which was a wrapped body. So we contacted them and asked them why they killed Oriolfo Sánchez and why they removed his body. They said it was alias “Cabuyo”. We said it wasn’t him and that we would talk about it at City Hall, at “Personería” and at “Defensoría del Pueblo” in Anorí [entités publiques chargées de défendre les droits de l’Homme, NDLR]. The soldiers had moved the body to a place where a helicopter would arrive, 400-500 meters from the spot where Oriolfo Sánchez had been killed.
Several videos posted on social networks show a body wrapped in a white tarpaulin, surrounded by soldiers and peasants.
In the video below, we especially hear a woman shouting: “We know you murdered a farmer, why you? […] You would pass this farmer for a guerrilla! This is not a guerrilla, we will not let you leave it as a guerrilla! We will not let you take it! “We also hear a helicopter noise. The wrapped body is visible from 0’03, far away, below.
“The farmer Ariolfo Sánchez Ruíz was executed by the Colombian army in Anorí, Antioquia. Society prevented the soldiers from removing the body from the body. Would they hand it over as a false positive, a man killed in action?” This surfer asked.
This video shows a similar scene, but was filmed closer. We can hear the same woman shout, “We won’t let you take her!”
Alejandro (pseudonym) continues:
The attitude of the soldiers was really strange. I think they understood from the beginning that they had not killed the alias “Cabuyo”. So we all thought that Oriolfo Sánchez would be a new “false positive” …
Alejandro (pseudonym) refers to a macabre exercise of the Colombian army in the early 2000s, known as the “false positive” scandal: it executed thousands of innocent civilians and posed them as guerrillas killed in that battle, to prove its ” efficiency “in its fight against guerrilla war. A practice designed to obtain bonuses or qualifications.
In this second video, uploaded by José David Hernández, we see yellow smoke next to the body of Oriolfo Sánchez. It is used to help the military helicopter to know where to land.
Oriolfo Sánchez’s body was finally recovered the following day, especially in the presence of Anorí’s “Personería”, before being buried in the village a few days later.
Video clip of José David Hernández, the day of Oriolfo Sánchez’s funeral, in Anorí.
Photos taken by José David Hernández, the day of Oriolfo Sánchez’s funeral, in Anorí. Photo 1: “No more, no more false positive results, the farmer must be respected.” Photo 2: “Murder of a farmer is a state crime.” Photo 3: “The state and its forces were created to defend and protect our main right, which is life, so as not to take it away from us.”
The reaction of the army: facts “question for investigation”
In a BEEP Juan Carlos Ramírez Trujillo, the commander of the troops present at Anorí, published on May 20, said the events that had occurred “in the context of military operations” were “matters of investigation”. The editors of the Observateurs de France 24 contacted him, but have not received any reply so far. We will publish his response if it reaches us.
In addition to the murder of Oriolfo Sánchez, relations between the peasant world and the police were already strained since May 9, when the latter began to destroy coca crops in the area. A practice contrary to the peace treaty signed in 2016, which specifically provided for a plan to replace illegal crops, probably to promote the search for alternative cocaine cultivation solutions, in a peaceful manner.
Article written by Chloé Lauvergnier (@clauvergnier).