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Weekly Report - 25 July 2019 (WR-19-29)

COLOMBIA: Duque opens congress with call for action

“Not one more,” Colombia’s President Iván Duque said to loud applause during a speech on 20 July to open the new session of congress, his words echoed back to him by those present. Duque was referring to the murder of social leaders since the signing of the peace accord in 2016 (462 according to the official tally, more than 700 on unofficial counts). Duque insisted that reducing the number of these killings was one of his government’s main priorities, along with combating corruption, which he underscored by presenting to congress the same anti-corruption bill it conspired to avoid passing at the end of the last session a month earlier. Congress is likely to be shamed into action on this front, given the public outcry last month, but Duque will have to battle to advance the rest of his legislative agenda.

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