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UA 372/90 - Colombia: possible extrajudicial execution: Henry Delgado, Luis Antonia Meza, Beatriz Elena Mendez

, Índice: AMR 23/044/1990

EXTERNAL (for general distribution) AI Index: AMR 23/44/90
Distr: UA/SC
UA 372/90 Possible Extrajudicial Execution 6 February 2015
COLOMBIA: Henry DELGADO, peasant farmer
Luis Antonio MEZA "
Beatriz Elena MENDEZ "
Amnesty International has learned with concern of the killings of Henry Delgado,
Luis Antonio Meza and his wife Beatriz Elena Méndez in circumstances suggesting
they may have been victims of extrajudicial execution.
According to an eye-witness report, at 6.30 am on 4 September 1990, Henry Delgado
and Luis Antonio Meza were riding on a motorcycle towards the community of
Tienda Nueva, Yondo municipality, in the Magdalena Medio region of Santander
department. They passed by a military post near a bank, Fondo Ganadero, and
Luis Antonio Meza stopped the motorcycle about ten metres further on after
shots were fired. Both men were questioned by the military regarding their
past political activities and then Luis Antonio Meza was allowed to go. Henry
Delgado was led away by the military to a hill opposite the military post.
Luis Antonio Meza is believed to have been the only witness to the arrest of
Henry Delgado. According to the report, later that morning, at 11.55 am,
gunshots and grenade detonations were heard coming from the direction of the
hill. The body of Henry Delgado was later taken to the town of Barrancabermeja
by the military, who reportedly claimed that he had been killed in a
confrontation with the guerrillas. Witnesses say that his body showed signs
of torture.
On 10 September 1990 at 11.00 am the bodies of Luis Antonio Meza and his wife
Beatriz Elena Méndez were reportedly left in the morgue in Barrancabermeja
by members of the armed forces. No further information is currently available
about the circumstances of their killing but Amnesty International is concerned
that they may have been the victims of extrajudicial execution.
The largely rural area of Magdalena Medio 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. Despite
some progress having been made in peace talks between several guerrilla groups
and the government in 1989 and 1990, there has been a continuation of political
violence. Principal victims of violence in the Magdalena Medio have been
community leaders, trade unionists and members of legal left-wing political
organizations. In areas where guerrilla forces are active the local civilian
population is often perceived by the armed forces as potential guerrilla
collaborators and has, as a result, been subjected to arbitrary arrest, torture,
"disappearance" and extrajudicial execution by army personnel and paramilitary
RECOMMENDED ACTION: Telegrams/telexes/faxes/express and airmail letters:
- expressing concern at the killing of Henry Delgado, Luis Antonio Meza and
Beatriz Elena Méndez in circumstances suggesting they were victims of
extrajudicial execution by the armed forces;
- urging that an investigation be opened into their deaths, the results of
which should be made public and those responsible brought to justice.
Presidente César Gaviria General Oscar Botero Presidente
de la República Ministro de Defensa Nacional
Palacio del Narino Ministerio de Defensa Nacional
Bogotá Avenida Eldorado - Carrera 52
Colombia Bogotá, Colombia
Telegrams: Presidente Gaviria Telegrams: Ministro Defensa
Bogota, Colombia Bogota, Colombia
Telexes: 44281 PALP CO Telexes: 42411 INPRE CO
Faxes: +57 1 283 3066 Faxes: +57 1 222 1874
+57 1 286 7324
Dr. Alfonso Gómez Méndez Comandante Eduardo Santos
Procurador General de la Nación Quiñones
Procuraduría General de la Nación Batallón de Artillería
Edificio Banco Ganadero "Nueva Granada"
Carrera 5, No. 15-80 Calle 12
Bogotá Pueblo Nuevo
Colombia Barrancabermeja
Santander, Colombia
Telegrams: Procurador General Telegrams: Comandante
Nacion, Bogota, Colombia Batallon Nueva Granada,
Telexes: 41224 PRGEN CO Barrancabermeja, Santander,
Faxes: +57 1 284 0472 Colombia
AA 25916
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
22 October 1990.

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