Threats and harassment continue against War on Want partner in Colombia

7 March 2017 - 1:30pm
News

Following a human rights verification mission organised by the Human Rights Subcommittee of the Agrarian, Peasant, Ethnic and Popular Summit in February, War on Want partner, The Social Corporation for Community Counselling and Training (COSPACC) has recently received a series of threats and harassment made against its leaders. 

Human right defenders (HRD) have been repeatedly followed around the offices of COSPACC by unknown men, who have also photographed the building. Furthermore, one HRD was attacked in an attempt to steal his belongings, which included a computer with key information about the region's social movements. He also received verbal threats to his life during the altercation. 

The systematic nature of these events, which COSPACC has publicly denounced and brought to the attention of the relevant authorities since 2004, is a matter of concern. It is worth recalling the events that occurred on January 23, 2013, when information corresponding to investigations of serious of human rights violations and violations of international humanitarian law was stolen. 

COSPACC, in coordination with the Foundation Committee of Solidarity with Political Prisoners (CFSP), has documented cases of extrajudicial executions through "false positives" in Boyacá and Casanare for more than a decade; which resulted in the penalisation of several soldiers, including General HENRY TORRES ESCALANTE of the Colombian National Army.

DEMANDS BY COSPACC

To the Colombian state:

Guarantees for the life and integrity of all the people who are part of COSPACC and the other processes that accompany it; and to carry out the necessary actions through the relevant institutions, in order to thoroughly investigate the reported events and provide guarantees for the exercise of the promotion and defence of human rights.

To national and international human rights organisations:

To follow up on this serious situation that is presented in the current context of violence against social movements, especially against its leaders and defenders of Human Rights. And to demand that the Colombian government comply with its constitutional obligations and demonstrate a real will for peace, by thoroughly investigating the claims and punishing those responsible.

The Colombian government must guarantee a basic right to life if there is to be any hope of building long-lasting peace in Colombia.

*COSPACC is a human rights organisation and a member of the Peoples' Congress, the National Movement of Victims of State Crimes (MOVICE) and the Colombia Europe United States Coordination (CCEEU).

Click below to download COSPACC's Public Statement

Latest news

BDS is a legitimate means of protest against human rights abuse, says War on Want

14 December 2017 - 12:15pm

Campaigning for BDS is a legitimate means of protest, a fact that has been affirmed time and time again by bodies such as the European Union. It’s effectiveness is one of the main reasons why there is an organised campaign led by the Israeli government to shut it down. Students have every right to use their democratic rights to organise and exercise freedom of expression, and should be applauded for calling out violations of international law and human rights abuse.

Read more

Was it too much to expect the WTO to deliver for women?

14 December 2017 - 12:00pm

Argentina, host for this week’s World Trade Organisation, welcomed hundreds of government representatives to Buenos Aires to negotiate the rules of the global trade in goods, services and ecommerce. Lagging far behind other international fora, the WTO made attempts to draw attention to the impact of trade on gender equality, and correspondingly the impact women’s economic productivity can have on trade.

Read more

Join the conversation

Get your holiday gifts in while there's still time with these political products from our online shop.… https://t.co/mr8MA9SY80 7 hours 53 min ago
Was it too much to hope the #WTO would deliver for #women? We ask: https://t.co/kXHmd0SUrH https://t.co/RO070EtRVb 11 hours 42 min ago
At the end of a week of failed #WTO negotiations, read our take on how their policies have failed #women globally:… https://t.co/FxAh1m69y9 1 day 10 hours ago