EXTERNAL (for general distribution) AI Index: AMR 28/04/92
Please bring this action to the attention of the person responsible for refugee
coordination in your section.
UA 316/92 Fear of refoulement 12 October 1992
ECUADOR: Oscar AMARIS, a Colombian
Amnesty International is concerned about the possible refoulement (forcible
return) of Oscar Amaris, a Colombian political refugee, living in Quito, the
According to reports, on 7 October 1992 the security forces detained Oscar
Amaris and another Colombian citizen, who was staying with him, at his home.
The other Colombian citizen was released after 24 hours.
Oscar Amaris reportedly sought political asylum in Ecuador. Amnesty
International believes that if returned to Colombia, he may run the risk of
serious human rights violations.
Amnesty International's information on Colombia indicates that there is a
pattern of large scale human rights abuses against political opponents such
as torture, extrajudicial executions and "disappearances".
Ecuador has signed the 1951 UN Convention on Refugees. Article 33 of the
Convention obliges states not to return refugees to a country where they would
be at risk of serious human rights violations.
Ecuador has also ratified the Convention Against Torture and Other Cruel,
Inhuman or Degrading Treatment or Punishment. Article 3.1 states that:
"No state party shall expel, return ("refouler"), or extradite a person
to another State where there are substantial grounds for believing
that he would be in danger of being subjected to torture".
RECOMMENDED ACTION: Please send telegrams/telexes and airmail letters either
in spanish, english or in your own language:
- expressing concern at the detention of Oscar Amaris who may face forcible
return to Colombia;