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UA 240/92 - Colombia: fear of extrajudicial execution / torture and ill- treatment: Luis Ramos Toledo, Pablo Leon, Dario Vasquez, Isaias Monsalve, Jacinta Munoz

, Index number: AMR 23/044/1992

EXTERNAL (for general distribution) AI Index: AMR 23/44/92
Distr: UA/SC
27 July 1992
UA 240/92 Fear of Extrajudicial Execution/Torture and ill-treatment
Pablo LEóN, farm administrator
Jacinta MUÑOZ, female
Amnesty International has learned with concern of the killing of three civilians
and the torture and ill-treatment of several others in separate incidents close
to the towns of Barrancabermeja and San Vicente in the Magdalena Medio region.
These abuses were reportedly carried out by members of the Colombian armed
forces who are involved in counter-guerrilla operations in the region.
According to information received by the organization, on 17 July 1992, at
approximately 2 a.m., Luís Ramos Toledo was killed by soldiers from the army's
Nueva Granada Battalion, Batallón Nueva Granada in the village of Nueva
Colombia, near Barrancabermeja. He was later reported by the army as having
died in combat. In the same village, soldiers reportedly made threats against
the lives of several other civilians.
On 19 July at 8 p.m., Pablo León, a farm administrator, was allegedly tortured
and threatened with death by soldiers from the army's Second Mobile Brigade,
Brigada Móvil 2. He made an official complaint, denuncia about his ill-treatment
to the local ombudsman, personería.
At dawn on 23 July, Darío Vasquez was reportedly killed by soldiers in the
village of El Pueblito. Sources say that he had come to the village to buy
lemons. The driver of their vehicle, whose name is not known, was also killed.
At 2 p.m. on the same day, in the village of Las Margaritas, soldiers reportedly
killed Isaias Monsalve and injured his wife, Jacinta Muñoz.
The largely rural area of the Magdalena Medio in central Colombia has been
the focus of political violence for several years following the emergence of
guerrilla groups in the 1960s and subsequent militarization of the region during
the 1980s. The regional human rights committee, Comite Regional para la Defensa
de los Derechos Humanos, (CREDHOS) has expressed serious concern about the
recent escalation of human rights abuses, including torture, extrajudicial
execution and "disappearance" committed by the Colombian army, police and
paramilitary organizations working with them, against members of the civilian
population in the area.
RECOMMENDED ACTION: Please send telegrams/telexes/faxes/express and airmail
- expressing concern at the reports of human rights violations committed by
the armed forces against the rural community of the Magdalena Medio, in
particular the reported killings of Luís Ramos Toledo on 17 July, Darío Vasquez
and Isaias Monsalve on 23 July and wounding of Jacinta Muñoz, and the torture
and ill-treatment of Pablo León on 19 July;
- requesting that there be an immediate investigation into these reported human
rights violations, the results of which should be made public and
those responsible brought to justice;
page 2 of UA 240/92...
- urging that the government take all possible measures to protect the lives
of civilians living in rural communities where the armed forces are operating.
1) President of Colombia:
Señor Presidente César Gaviria Trujillo
Presidente de la República
Palacio de Nariño
Santa Fe de Bogotá, Colombia
Telegrams: President Gaviria, Bogotá, Colombia
Telexes: 44281 PALP CO
Faxes: + 57 1 286 3066; + 57 1 286 7324; + 57 1 287 7937
Salutation: Excelentísimo Sr. Presidente / Dear President Gaviria
2) Minister of Defence
Dr. Rafael Pardo Rueda
Ministro de Defensa Nacional
Ministerio de Defensa Nacional
Avenida Eldorado - Carrera 52
Santa Fe de Bogotá, Colombia
Telegrams: Ministro de Defensa Pardo Rueda, Bogota, Colombia
Telexes: 42411 INPRE CO; 44561 CFAC CO
Faxes: + 57 1 222 1874
Salutation: Sr. Ministro/Dear Minister
3) Commander of Mobile Brigade No.2
Brigadier General Fernando Tapias Sterling
Comandante de la II Brigada
Ministerio de Defensa
Avenida Eldorado - Carrera 52
Santa Fe de Bogotá
Telegrams: Comandante II Brigada Movil, Bogota, Colombia
Salutation: Sr. Comandante/Dear Commander
4) Commander of the Armed Forces
General Manuel Murillo González
Comandante del Ejército
Avenida Eldorado - Carrera 52
Santa Fe de Bogotá
Telegrams: Comandante del Ejercito, Bogotá, Colombia
Telexes: 43401 COEJC
Salutation:Sr. Comandante/Dear Commander
Procurator General:
Dr. Carlos Gustavo Arrieta Padilla
Procurador General de la Nación
Procuraduría General
Edificio Banco Ganadero
Carrera 5, No. 15-80
Santa Fe de Bogotá, Colombia
Regional Human Rights Committee
AA 505
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 7 September 1992.

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