Read the September 2010 informative Bulletin
On August 17, Ingrid Vergara, spokespersan of the regional chapter of the MOVICE in Sucre, was informed by telephone that a car was driving around her residence. According to witnesses a gray van had been parked hours before the residence of the human rights defender. On August 23, neighbors saw the same gray van before the residence of Ingrid. When Ingrid arrived at her house the van left the place. Ingrid also received intimidating emails in portuguese from the sender firstname.lastname@example.org to her personal mail. On 28 August the Intereclesiastical Comission of Justice and Peace was informed that Edelmiro Aberto Anaya, paramilitary that is being judged under Law 975, stated false, libelous and slanderous accusations against, Juan David Diaz, member of the MOVICE Chapter Sucre. Anaya said that Juan had been a supporter of the paramilitary cause, accusing him to be responsible of the crime of murder. Anaya has been sentenced to 37 years in prison and is co-author of the murder of the former Mayor of El Roble and Juan David's father, Tito Diaz Euladio.
Arrest of David Rabelo Crespo, member of MOVICE Chapter Magdalena Medio
On September 14 David Rableo Crespo was arrested in the city of Barrancabermeja by members of the Technical Investigation Office (CTI). That same day David was driven by a heavy police escort and CTI agents to the airport to be transported to the city of Bogotá. David Rabelo Crespo is a member of the Board of Directors of the Corporation for the Defence of Human Rights (CREDHOS) and member of the Movement of Victims of State Crimes Chapter Magdalena Medio. David Rabelo had been ex-councilor of the city of Barrancabermeja for the Patriotic Union (UP), and is an active member of the Central Committee of the Colombian Communist Party and Alternative Democratic Pole. Link: http://www.movimientodevictimas.org/index.php?option=com_content&task=view&id=702&Itemid=1
Risk for members of the Laywers Collective Luis Carlos Pérez (CCALP) continues
On September 6 Yuliana Rico, lawyer of the lawyers collective, was walking to the office of CCALP, when she was attacked and physically assaulted by a man who placed a knife in her chest and pushed her to the ground, causing injuries in her arms and hands. The man took Yuliana's phone after which he fled on a motorcycle, which had been waiting for him with another person. Last month, another member of CCALP, Judith Mojica Maldonado, was assaulted reaching CCALP's office in the city of Bucaramanga.
Media process, defamation and threats against the Justice and Peace Commission
The testimonies of the misnamed "Peace Managers" Eida Nellys Mosquera, known by the alias "Karina" and Daniel Sierra, alias "Samir", did not serve the cause of concealment and justification in the defense of the retired General Rito Alejo del Río Rojas during the trial in which Rito Alejo del Rio Rojas is held responsible for the murder of Marino López during the military operation “Genesis”. In the same trial the accusations of both testimonies against the Justice and Peace Commission of having ties with the FARC-EP also couldn't be proven.
On September 8, a motorcycle with two people who wearing black helmets approached Danilo Rueda, member of the Intereclesiastical Commission for Justice and Peace and the Impulsing Committee of MOVICE, who was waiting for a taxi. The mirror of the motorcycle touched Danilo and the person on the back of the motorcycle told him: "This is a warning, putting yourself where you shouldn't." Then the two persons left.
Movements calling themselves "nationalist and active reserve of Colombia" attacked the Lawyer's Collective José Alvear Restrepo (CCAJAR)
People calling themselves "nationalist movements and active reserve of Colombia”, including former Senator Enrique Gómez Hurtado, Jaime Restrepo, legal director of UnoAmerica, and the president of the Foundation Colombia Hurt Rodrigo Obregon, realized a rally on September 1, outside the headquarters of CCAJAR, denigrating the work done by this organization on behalf of victims of human rights violations in which are committed members of the security forces. Link: http://www.colectivodeabogados.org/Movimientos-autodenominados
In a letter to president Juan Manuel Santos, CCAJAR, asked for his immediate intervention, after being informed by a credible source, on the preparation of an attempt against the life of a lawyer of the lawyer's collecitve, in which the military intelligence would be involved.
Slandour against Diego Martínez
In the newspaper El Tiempo on September 1, 2010, former presidential adviser José Obdulio Gaviria wrote an opinion column in which he made accusations against various members of MOVICE and organisers of the Public Hearing in La Macarena, among which Diego Martinez, who is the executive secretary of the Permanent Committee for the Defence of Human Rights (CPDH) and member of the impulsing Committe of MOVICE, to be members of the Clandestine Colombian Communist Party PC3 and the FARC.
Death threats to a member of the Humanitarian Zone CIVIPAZ (Meta)
On September 13, Lucia Parra Barreo, received three text messages from the cellphone 3115865037 in which she is threatened to death as well as a resident of Puerto Esperanza known as "El Tocayo".
Since September 11, following the retirement of Police of the municipality of El Castillo and the entry of the military, people noticed the presence of armed civilians, which belong to the paramilitary strategy.
Military and paramilitary attacks against the peasant population of the municipality of El Castillo continue.
On September 9 Nelson Murillo Taborda was killed in the village of Caño Lindo (municipality of El Castillo – Meta), while he was performing agricultural work on a farm in the village of Lucitania. Nelson was suprised by a subject who identified himself as member of the AUC, who shot Nelson several times, after which he fled. Nelson was shot in front of his wife, who asked the person why Nelson had to be killed. The person told her that this was a task of the AUC. Nelson was a member of the Community Action Board of the village of Caño Lindo and the Association of peasants and workers of the High Ariari (ATCARI). Nelson is the brother of Ferney Murillo, who is a member of the board of SINTRAGRIM and also brother of Alba Nelly Murillo, who was president of the Community Action Committee of the village La Esmeralda and had been disappeared on February 15, 2009 in the same village in which her brother Nelson is killed. Link: http://justiciaypazcolombia.com/Asesinado-campesino-Nelson-Murillo
Serious human rights violations during the occupation of the ESMAD at the University of Antioquia
Since September 13, the administration of the University of Antioquia decided to require the Personal Identification Card-TIP-identification as a unique record of every student. The students have spoken out against this measure and expressed the doubts that they have regarding the use of personal information contained in the chip inside the card, because the university administration has not clarified how and why they would use such information. In addition, past experiences have shown the way the university administration has delivered private information of teachers and students to members of military intelligence and prosecutors. As a result of the the requirement of the TIP clashes started between the university students and private surveillance, on September 13. They University that same day was besieged by the police (riot police) and members of the National Army occupying the five entrances of the University, harassing and assaulting students that did not have their TIP.
Step by step against impunity
On September 20 Johny Silva's father started his journey from Cali to Bogotá, after 5 years of impunity in the assasination of his son. It was known that the Prosecutor's Office before the Superior Court of Cali, recently ordered to absolve of all responsibility in the death of Jhonny Silva Aranguren, Captain Gabriel Bonilla González. This decision does not respect the minimum that should characterize the administration of justice in the effective investigation and punishment of extrajudicial executions. The journey is accompanied by MOVICE Chapter Valle, SINTRAUNICOL, IAPES, NOMADESC, PCHR and CSPP.
National Day for Human Rights in Colombia
On September 9 in Bogota, the national and international campaign "For the law to defend human rights in Colombia" officially presented of the figures of attacks against defenders of human rights in Colombia in the period January – June 2010 . During the same event a tribute was made to Carmelo Agámez Berrio, technical secretary of Sucre MOVICE in prison since November 15, 2008 and MOVICE presented its report "The victimization of MOVICE, five years combatting impunity."
Seven military sentenced because of extrajudicial executions
On May 14, 2007, in rural area of Valledupar, troops of the military batallion La Popa took the lives of Andrés Alfonso Ramirez Cantillo, Edilberto Hernández Garcia and Johan Caicedo Avila, presenting them as killed in combat. The victims were all youngsters that came from the popular neighborhoods of Barranquilla and had travelled under false promises of work to Valledupar, where they were delivered to the National Army, who simulated an operation with a successful outcome. Two years later, 7 members of the National Army, have been convicted on the crime of murder of a protected person imposing the penalty of imprisonment of 40 years. In its decision, the judge ordered the INPEC to move the military sentenced to a prison facility, since to date they had been held in the facilities of the Batallion La Popa. Link: http://www.colectivodeabogados.org/Condenados-siete-militares-por
On September 6, 2010, the Municipal Judge of the municipality of El Playon – Santander, ordered the preventive detention against nine active and retired military for the crimes of murder of protected persons and forced disappearance of Marco Quintero Rivera (father), Marco Javier Quintero Niño (child) and Nelson Diaz Paez.
Francisco Santos and Jose Obdulio Gaviria have to respond for their pronouncements against trade unionists
Former – Vice President Francisco Santos Calderon and former presidential adviser José Obdulio Gaviria, must respond on September 20 in a judicial hearing on charges of slander against union leaders of the tradeunions of Sintraunicol, Sintraemcali and SINTRATELEFONOS, organizations affiliated to the Confederation of Workers (CUT), which in May 2010 reported that during the presidency of Álvaro Uribe Vélez 527 labor leaders were killed.
The United States government certifies Colombia despite the lack of progress in human rights
The US State Department announced on September 15 that Colombia complies with the conditions of human rights and therefore certifies the country in order to receive military aid. This despite the fact that human rights violations committed by the security forces remain unpunished. The press release issued by the State Department recognized the seriousness of the problems of human rights in Colombia. Colombian and U.S. groups working on human rights supplied enough evidence to the State Department, evidencing that last year there was no progress on judicial investigations into human rights violations, including cases involving over 3,000 civilians allegedly killed at the hands of the military. Link: http://www.comitepermanente.org/el_gobierno_de_estados_unidos_certifia_a_colombia_.html
6,000 paramilitaries operate in Colombia, according to INDEPAZ
"Narco-Paramilitary" groups in Colombia still have at least 6,000 armed fighters, after the demobilization in 2006 of the bulk of paramilitary organizations and their succesive reorganisation, according to a report by INDEPAZ published on September 10, 2010. According to the study realized by INDEPAZ during the first half of 2010, presence of such groups was reported in at least 314 municipalities in 27 out of 32 departments. The number of such groups would be greater if they include the support network with 7,400 to 12,000 members, according to the report of the NGO.
Support for prosecutor Angela Maria Buitrago Ruiz
Relatives of victims of human rights violations, human rights defenders and human rights organisations, rejected the withdrawal demanded by the Attorney General of the Nation of Dr. Angela Maria Buitrago Ruiz, and considered the motivations, expressed by the Attorney General to try to justify that decision, absurd and contradictory.
Report on human rights violations against trade unionists and the situation of impunity, 2009-2010 and 2002-2010
The National Union School (ENS) and the Colombian Commission of Jurists (CCJ) submitted a report on the violations of the right to life, integrity and personal freedom of trade unionists in Colombia in 2009 and the government of President Uribe (2002-2010). The report stresses the grave situation of impunity and the persistence of human rights violations in the course of 2010. Link: http://www.cut.org.co/index.php?option=com_content&view=article&id=87:36-lideres-sindicales-han-sido-asesinados-en-colombia&catid=34:comunicados
Act 1395 of 2010: access to justice diminishes
Seeking justice mechanisms to decongest the judicial system, the Colombian government issued the Law 1395 of 2010, applying to all jurisdictions. However, both victims and advocates feel that the law discourages the due process. Lawyers of the “Judicial Corporation Freedom” (CJL) consider that "the law assumes that we lawyers are the ones who have congested the contentious jurisdiction, on the principle that we always act in bad faith." (…) The Ombudsman (Procuraduría) of Medellín filed a constitutional charge against this law. Still, after nearly two months of existence, both victims and lawyers have had no other choice than to submerge into the legislation and learn how to deal with it. According to the lawyers, "This law penalizes the very exercise of law and promotes impunity."
With respect to the law proposal on victims in the Congress, Mr. Fernando Araujo, President of the Conservative Party stated that: "We can not create a law on victims, which constitues a broken vein for the national budget." " We have many reservations facing the issue of state agents as responsables of human rights violations"," We do not agree to include the chapter on land restitution in the law on.Victims." Minimum Elements for a Law on Victims by MOVICE:
Mothers of victims of extrajudicial executions request meeting with President Juan Manuel Santos for the upcoming March 6, 2011
The request was made at the First Meeting of Victims of Extrajudicial Executions and against Impunity "in the cases referred to as 'false positives', held on September 5, 2010 in Ocaña, Norte de Santander. With the aim of promoting and making visible the investigations into the deaths of young people presented by the Army as members of armed groups, mothers requested president Juan Manuel Santos to meet with them on March 6, 2011, International Day of Victims of State Crimes. The event in Ocaña ended with a march with the presence of over 68 families of victims who went to the Ocaña Courthouse to demand truth and justice. Link: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5b7kkfZ4t3w
UN warns on possible increase in violence because of processes of land restitution
Christian Salazar, representative of the UN High Commisioners Office on Human Rights in Colombia celebrated the presentation of a lawproyect, to return land to the people who had been displaced violently. "This is a crucial issue for Colombia. It is important that the international community supports this process," he said. The diplomat warned that the process of land restitution will generate violence, stating that the recent assassinations of leaders of victims claiming land are an indication of this new violece. Salazar also asked Colombia to show results in the cases of 'extrajudicial executions'. Link: http://www.eltiempo.com/colombia/justicia/onu-pide-a-colombia-celeridad-en-casos-de-falsos-positivos_7899090-1
Solidarity and support with Senator Piedad Cordoba
MOVICE expresses its solidarity with Senator Piedad Cordoba, following the decision of the Attorney's (Procurador) General's Office, Alejandro Ordoñez, to dismiss and disable the senator for a period of 18 years to exercise public functions. It is clear that the order issued by Ordoñez, which alleged that the senator had "promoted" and "collaborated" with the FARC, is nothing but retaliation for her hard work towards a negotiated solution to the armed social and political conflict. It is clearly evidenced to be a form of political persecution, that is not supported by any strong evidence, and caresses any legal, ethical or moral merit.
Former president of Congress was arrested by the General Prosecutor
Former president of Congress, Javier Cáceres, was detained because of his alleged link to the Bloque Héroes de Montes de Maria of the Self-Defense Forces of Colombia, AUC. Caceres had been linked to the AUC by the former commander Uber Enrique Banquez, alias "Juancho Dique ', one of the first convicted in the Justice and Peace Law.
Massacre of Trujillo: A drop of hope in a sea of impunity
The Supreme Court decided to leave with no value, the acquittal handed down on January 4, 1991 by the Third Court of Public Order of Bogota and 20 September 1991 handed down by the Superior Court in favor of the commanders, Henry Loaiza Ceballos, alias "El Alacran" Diego Montoya Sánchez, alias "Don Diego", retired Mayor of the Army, Alirio Urueña Jaramillo, and Diego Rodríguez Vásquez.
Convicted former rector of the University of Cordoba, Victor Hugo Hernandez, fugitive from justice and paramilitary Valencia Victor Alfonso Rojas, alias "Jawi"
Ten years after the murder of trade unionist Hugo Iguarán Cotes, the Tenth Criminal Court of the Specialized Circuit of Bogota, sentenced to 35 years in prison, Victor Hugo Hernandez, former rector of the University of Cordoba, who actually is a fugitive from justice, and paramilitary Victor Alfonso Rojas Valencia, alias "Jawi" for the crime of aggravated murder and the crime of conspiracy.