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Quintín Lame, 1980s

Tathiana Montaña Mestizo

Subject History
Social Movements » Collective Behaviour

Place South America » Colombia

Period 1000 - 1999 » 1900-1999

Key-Topics guerilla war, indigenous rights, liberty, revolution

DOI: 10.1111/b.9781405184649.2009.01235.x


In 1974 in the south of Colombia, an indigenous peasant group known as Quintín Lame (CQL) emerged. This group, which received military training from the Marxist-Leninist Communist Party (PC-ML), was formed after the killing of regional indigenous leaders in Cauca by repressive forces of the state and large landowners. The CQL was thus constituted as a military selfdefense group. Thanks to an organization created years earlier by the indigenous leader Manuel Quintín Lame (1880–1967) , the group had the support of many indigenous communities in the region of the Valle del Cauca, Huila, Tolima, and parts of the departments of Meta and Caquetá. The founders of the Quintín Lame armed group distinguished themselves from other armed groups of the time by their multicultural approach. The group included mestizos such as Gustavo Mejía, Pedro León Rodríguez, and Edgar Londoño; foreigners such as the Hungarian Pablo Tattay, Gabriel soler from Argentina, and Teresa Tomish from Chile; and indigenous people from different ethnic communities in the south of the country. Until the early 1980s the CQL acted in self-defense of traditional territories and only used arms when territorial and political autonomy was threatened. The group's first military offensive took place in 1984 with an assault on Castilla, a small town in the Cauca department, and the takeover of the village of santander de Quilichao, ... log in or subscribe to read full text

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