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  • Milagro Sala (L) who is under house arrest will receive Piedad Cordoba (R) on Tuesday.

    Milagro Sala (L) who is under house arrest will receive Piedad Cordoba (R) on Tuesday. | Photo: EFE

Published 2 September 2017

Both human rights activists fight state repression in their respective countries.

Colombian human rights activist Piedad Cordoba is slated to meet Argentine activist Milagro Sala on Tuesday. Sala is currently under house arrest for what she calls "political revenge" from the right-wing government of President Mauricio Macri.

Human Rights Icon Piedad Cordoba: 'I Will Be President of Colombia in 2018'

The Afro-Colombian politician, lawyer and long-time peace activist is a renown figure in the country and works with human rights associations throughout the region. Cordoba, a former senator, was a key figure in the peace talks and historic deal reached last year by former Revolutionary Armed Forces of Colombia, FARC, guerrillas and the government of President Juan Manuel Santos.

Sala, head of the Indigenous group Tupac Amaru, is serving house arrest in a decrepit building, which her lawyers denounced as a way to "continue to harass her."

She wasn't transferred to her house, but to a looted building without windows or furniture, which was later fixed by Tupac Amaru supporters. The Inter-American Commission on Human Rights, IAHCR, has condemned the conditions of Sala's house arrest, arguing that she is being subjected to "annihilation by the State."

"I have a large state police truck here, there are also the police from the province, I have cameras that surround the whole house, microphones. This is not a home, they have not respected the IACHR resolution," Sala said during an interview with AM 750 radio station.

Dear @salamilagro, I hope that aberrant injustice does not rob you of hope, that your dignity is stronger, that your freedom is its punishment!

Sala was arrested on Jan. 16, 2016 after a month-long sit-in to protest the neoliberal policies of Jujuy Governor Gerardo Morales, an ally of Macri. During her time in prison, she said she was subjected to torture and received death threats. She also blamed the government for her detention.

"It seems that Macri and Morales have forgotten that we live in a democracy ... if you do not think like them, you are forced to bow your head, to be repressed, imprisoned," Sala said.

Political authorities of Jujuy accused Sala of embezzlement and alleged that she used “authoritarian and violent methods” to run community initiatives and protests. Last year, the United Nations demanded that the government release Sala, describing her incarceration as "arbitrary."

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