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Colombian government must immediately suspend the use of glyphosate
Bogota, Colombia. Glyphosate, the herbicide used to eradicate crops considered illicit in Colombia, has been classified as a substance probably carcinogenic to humans by the International Agency for Research on Cancer, the specialized cancer agency of the World Health Organization. Based on these findings, the Colombian Ministry of Health is recommending that the country’s Ministry of Justice "immediately suspend the use of glyphosate in the Illicit Crops Eradication Program’s aerial spraying operations."
The Interamerican Association for Environmental Defense (AIDA) strongly supports this recommendation so that the human rights to health and a healthy environment, both closely linked to the right to life, are protected in Colombia. We urge the government to fulfill its national and international obligations, respecting the conclusions reached by the highest health authorities, in order to prevent further damage to the country’s people and environment.
For 15 years, AIDA and partner organizations have been warning of the grave impacts glyphosate has on the environment and human health. We’ve advocated for the need to apply the precautionary principle to suspend Colombia’s fumigation program, which has been financed by the government of the United States.
Astrid Puentes Riaño, attorney and co-director of AIDA: "Colombia, like no other country, has used millions of liters of glyphosate that have not succeeded in destroying coca and poppy plants, but have irreparably damaged the environment and human health. Without excuses or delays, the National Narcotics Council must act responsibly and immediately suspend the use of glyphosate in the eradication of illicit crops."
Anna Cederstav, co-director of AIDA and PhD in Chemistry: "The scientific evidence on the impacts of glyphosate on the environment and human health is sufficient to support a decision of the suspension of aerial spraying of glyphosate in Colombia."