• Campaigns

Colombia: Fear for Safety

, Index number: AMR 23/032/2000

A man with a police identity card has threatened to kill 14-year-old Juliet Tatiana Manrique and her mother, human rights activist Astrid Manrique Carvajal. The threats appear to be directly connected with Astrid Manrique Carvajal's work for the Asociación de Familiares de Detenidos Desaparecidos (ASFADDES), Association of Relatives of the Detained Disappeared.

PUBLIC AI Index: AMR 23/32/00
UA 117/00 Fear for Safety 12 May 2000
COLOMBIAAstrid Manrique Carvajal, human rights activist
Her daughter Juliet Tatiana Manrique, aged 14
Other members of the Asociación de Familiares de Detenidos Desaparecidos
(ASFADDES)
A man with a police identity card has threatened to kill 14-year-old Juliet
Tatiana Manrique and her mother, human rights activist Astrid Manrique Carvajal.
The threats appear to be directly connected with Astrid Manrique Carvajal’s
work for the Asociación de Familiares de Detenidos Desaparecidos (ASFADDES),
Association of Relatives of the Detained Disappeared. Amnesty International
is concerned for her and her family’s safety, and for that of other ASFADDES
members.
On 3 May a man approached Juliet Tatiana Manrique and called her by name,
apparently showing her a police identity card bearing the surname Ramirez.
He said that he knew her mother, Astrid Manrique Carvajal, where she worked,
what time she left work, what time she arrived at work, and her home telephone
number. Later that day he followed Juliet home from school, telling her she
and her mother would be killed if she told anyone.
ASFADDES is a non-governmental human rights organization made up of relatives
of the “disappeared”, who work to find out what has happened to their relatives
and bring those responsible to justice. ASFADDES members, together with other
human rights defenders and witnesses of human rights violations, have endured
death threats, killings and disappearances at the hands of the security forces
and their paramilitary allies.
Astrid Manrique Carvajal has been an active member of the ASFADDES branch in
Popayán, Cauca department, since the "disappearance" of her partner. She is
now on the organisation’s executive council (Consejo Directivo).
BACKGROUND INFORMATION
Paramilitary groups backed by the army have killed several thousand civilians
over the past five years alone, and continue to commit serious human rights
violations with virtual impunity. The Colombian government suspended the
constitutional legal base for the formation of paramilitary organizations and
issued directives to the armed forces to combat and disband such groups in
1989, yet they continue to work with the support of the security forces in
many areas of the country.
The security forces and their paramilitary allies routinely label human rights
organizations and defenders as guerrilla collaborators or supporters, so they
can present them as legitimate targets in the counter-insurgency war. At least
25 human rights defenders have been killed or “disappeared” in the last three
years. Some armed opposition groups also refuse to respect the legitimacy and
independence of organizations which belong to civil society.
RECOMMENDED ACTION: Please send telegrams/telexes/faxes/express/airmail
letters in Spanish or your own language:
- expressing concern about the death threat made against Astrid Manrique
Carvajal and her daughter Juliet Tatiana Manrique on 3 May 2000 and urging
a full investigation, with the results made public and those responsible brought
to justice;
2
- urging that immediate measures be taken to guarantee their safety, and that
of members of ASFADDES in Popayán, so they can continue their work of promoting
and protecting human rights in accordance with international human rights
standards;
- urging the Colombian government to adhere to its obligations regarding human
rights defenders, as laid out in the UN Declaration on the Right and
Responsibility of Individuals, Groups and Organs of_Society to Promote and
Protect Universally Recognised Human Rights and Fundamental Freedoms adopted
on 9 December 1998, the Organization of American States Human Rights Defenders
in the Americas resolution adopted on 7 June 1999 [AG/RES. 1671 (XXIX-O/99)]
and in line with repeated recommendations made by the UN to the Colombian
government to take measures to guarantee the safety of human rights defenders.
APPEALS TO:
President of the Republic
Señor Presidente Andrés Pastrana Arango
Presidente de la República
Palacio de Nariño
Carrera 8 No.7-26
Santafé de Bogotá, Colombia
Telegrams:President Pastrana, Bogota, Colombia
Faxes: + 57 1 286 7434/287 7939/284 2186/289 3377
Salutation:Dear President / Excmo. Sr Presidente
Vice-President of the Republic
Señor Vicepresidente Gustavo Bell Lemus
Alto Consejero Presidencial para asuntos de Derechos Humanos y lucha Contra
la Corrupción
Cra. 8 #7-26,
Palacio de Nariño,
Santafé de Bogotá, Colombia
Faxes: + 57 1 337 1351
Salutation:Dear Vice-President / Excmo. Sr. Vicepresidente
Minister of Interior
Señor Humberto De La Calle
Ministro del Interior
Ministerio del Interior
Palacio Echeverry
Carrera 8a, No.8-09, piso 2o.
Santafé de Bogotá, Colombia
Telegrams:Ministro Interior, Bogota, Colombia
Fax: + 57 1 286 8025
Salutation:Dear Sir / Sr. Ministro
COPIES TO:
Association for Relatives of the "Disappeared"
ASFADDES
AA 011446
Santafé de Bogotá, Colombia
and to diplomatic representatives of Colombia accredited to your country.
PLEASE SEND APPEALS IMMEDIATELY. Check with the International Secretariat,
or your section office, if sending appeals after 23 June 2000.

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