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UA 333/92 - Colombia: fear of "disappearance" / fear of extrajudicial execution: Amparo Torres Victoria

, Index number: AMR 23/056/1992

Armed men reportedly abducted Amparo Torres Victoria, executive of Santiago University's trade union, while she was on her way home on the evening of 22 October 1992. Eye-witnesses reported that her vehicle was intercepted by armed men who asked for her and her companions' identification papers. She was taken out of the car and reportedly beaten by the men who forced her into one of their vehicles. Her whereabouts remain unknown.

EXTERNAL (for general distribution) AI Index: AMR 23/56/92
Distr: UA/SC
UA 333/92 Fear of "disappearance"/
fear of extrajudicial execution 27 October 1992
COLOMBIA: Amparo TORRES VICTORIA, female, trade union leader
Amnesty International is seriously concerned for the safety of Amparo Torres
Victoria, who was reportedly abducted by armed men at 9pm on 22 October 1992
whilst on her way home from Santiago University, Cali, (Valle department),
where she worked.
According to eye-witnesses, Amparo Torres was leaving the university in a car
with two companions when their vehicle was intercepted by armed men in several
vehicles. Amparo Torres and her companions were asked for identification papers
and Amparo Torres was then reportedly taken from the car by the armed men who
beat her and forced her into one of their vehicles, before driving her to an
unknown destination. Her detention has not been acknowledged and her whereabouts
remain unknown.
Amparo Torres is an executive (Fiscal) of Santiago University's workers union,
Sindicato de Trabajadores de la Universidad Santiago, (SINTRAUSACA). For
several months members of the Union's Executive had reportedly been receiving
death threats.
BACKGROUND INFORMATION
In recent years widespread and systematic human rights violations have occurred
in Colombia, including torture, "disappearance" and extrajudicial execution.
Trade unionists, peasant and community leaders and members of legal left-wing
parties have been particular targets. The majority of such abuses have been
attributed by the Colombian authorities to armed opposition groups or to
civilian "death squads", which it claims it is unable to control. However,
independent investigations have concluded that many such groups operate under
the command or with the support of the Colombian armed and security forces.
RECOMMENDED ACTION: Please send telegrams/telexes/faxes/express and airmail
letters either in Spanish or in your own language:
- expressing concern for the safety of Amparo Torres Victoria and requesting
a full investigation to establish her whereabouts;
- urging that if she is in detention, her legal situation be clarified and
that she be treated humanely and allowed full access to family and to lawyers;
- urging that if in detention, that she be released unless charged with a
recognizable criminal offence and brought before a competent court.
page 2 of UA 333/92...
APPEALS TO:
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, 286 7324, 287 7937
Salutation: Excelentísimo Sr. Presidente/Dear President Gaviria
2) 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
Telegrams: Procurador General Arrieta, Bogotá, Colombia
Telexes: 41224 PRGEN CO or 41213 PGNDP CO
Faxes: + 57 1 284 0472
Salutation: Sr. Procurador de la Nación/Dear Dr. Arrieta
3) Advocate for the People:
Dr. Jaime Córdoba Triviño
Defensor del Pueblo
Defensoría del Pueblo
Calle 34, Carrera 5
Santa Fe de Bogotá, Colombia
Telegrams:Defensor del Pueblo Trivino, Defensoria del Pueblo, Bogota, Colombia
Telexes: 41224 PRGEN CO or 41213 PGNDP CO
Faxes: + 57 1 284 0472
Salutation: Estimado Dr Triviño/Dear Dr. Triviño
4) Attorney General
Dr. Gustavo de Greiff
Fiscal General
Fiscalia General
Hotel Orqidea Real
Carrera 7, No 32-16
Santa Fe de Bogotá, Colombia
Telegrams: Fiscal General,Fiscalia General, Bogotá, Colombia
Faxes: + 57 1 287 7480
Salutation: Estimado Dr. de Greiff/Dear Dr. de Greiff
COPIES OF YOUR APPEALS TO:
Association for Relatives of the "Disappeared"
Señores
ASFADDES
AA 011446
Santa Fe 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 8 December 1992.

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