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UA 214/91 - Colombia: fear of torture / "disappearance": Noel Edinson Ramirez

, Index number: AMR 23/034/1991

EXTERNAL (for general distribution) AI Index: AMR 23/34/91
Distr: UA/SC
UA 214/91 Fear of Torture/"Disappearance" 19 June 1991
COLOMBIA: Noel EDINSON RAMIREZ, law student, aged 26
Amnesty International is concerned for the physical safety of Noel Edinson
Ramírez, a 26-year-old law student, who was last seen on 17 June 1991 in Valle
department.
According to reports, six hooded and heavily-armed men seized Noel Edinson
Ramírez on 17 June 1991 near La Chapa Ranch (finca) between the communities
(veredas) of Villacolombia and Liberia in the municipality (municipio) of
Jamundi, Valle department, and forced him into a blue truck. He has not been
seen since.
Noel Edinson Ramírez lives in the community of Liberia and, as well as
being a law student, is an active member of the Unión Patriótica (UP), Patriotic
Union, a legal left-wing coalition group. Since its creation in 1985, the
UP claims that over 1,500 of its members, including grassroots activists, local
councillors, congress members and national leaders, have been the victims of
politically-motivated "disappearance" and/or extrajudicial execution at the
hands of the security forces or civilians working with them or under their
authority. According to the UP, over 50 of its members have already been killed
since the beginning of 1991 and 13 have "disappeared".
BACKGROUND INFORMATION
In recent years Amnesty International has received an increasing number of
reports of human rights violations in Colombia, including "disappearances".
Local human rights groups estimate that over 2,000 people have "disappeared"
and remain unaccounted for since 1980. Principal targets have been people
associated with trade unions, civic and community movements and legal left-wing
parties, as well as alleged members of or sympathizers with armed opposition
groups. Amnesty International is not always in a position to establish
responsibility for each individual "disappearance", as perpetrators are often
not fully identified. However, on the basis of available evidence, the
organization concludes that many such abuses are carried out by members of
the Colombian security forces or civilians working under their control.
RECOMMENDED ACTION: Telegrams/telexes/faxes/express and airmail letters:
- expressing concern for the safety of Noel Edinson Ramírez, who was last
seen on 17 June 1991;
- urging that there be an immediate, effective investigation to establish
his whereabouts;
- urging that, if in detention, he be humanely treated and be provided full
access to lawyers and relatives;
2
- urging that, if in detention, he be immediately brought before a competent
court or released.
page 2 of UA 214/91
APPEALS TO
Presidente César Gaviria Trujillo
Presidente de la República
Palacio de Nariño
Bogotá D.E., Colombia
Telegrams: Presidente Gaviria, Bogota, Colombia
Telexes: 44281 PALP CO
Faxes: + 57 1 283 3066; + 57 1 287 7937
+ 57 1 286 7324
Dr Gustavo Arrieta Padilla
Procurador General de la Nación
Procuraduría General
Edificio Banco Ganadero
Carrera 5, No. 15-80
Bogotá, Colombia
Telegrams: Procurador General Arrieta, Bogota, Colombia
Telexes: 41224 PRGEN CO; 41213 PGNDP CO
Faxes: + 57 1 284 0472
General Oscar Botero Restrepo
Ministro de Defensa Nacional
Ministerio de Defensa Nacional
Avenida Eldorado - Carrera 52
Bogotá, Colombia
Telegrams: Ministro Defensa, Bogota, Colombia
Telexes: 42411 INPRE CO; 44561 CFAC CO
Faxes: + 57 1 222 1874
COPIES TO:
Señores
ASFADDES (Association of Relatives of the
A.A. 011446 "Disappeared")
Bogotá
Colombia
and to diplomatic representatives of Colombia in your country
PLEASE SEND APPEALS IMMEDIATELY. Check with the International Secretariat,
or your section office, if sending appeals after 31 July 1991.

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