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Colombia: fear for safety: Jorge Enrique Illera Dodino, human rights activist, Oscar Becerra, community leader and many others

, Índice: AMR 23/004/1995

Jorge Enrique Illera Dodino, Oscar Becerra and about 10 other civic and community leaders in the municipalities of Convencion and El Carmed are reported to be on a "death list". The list is alleged to have been drawn up by the Departament Administrativo de Seguridad (DAS) and then supplied to a paramilitary group operating in the region. Jorge Enrique Illera Dodino, a human rights activist, was detained several times in the mid-1980s and subjected to torture and threats. A denunciation of the "death list" has been presented to the relevant authorities.

EXTERNAL (for general distribution) AI Index: AMR 23/04/95
Distr: UA/SC
UA 27/95 Fear for Safety 1 February 1995
COLOMBIA Jorge Enrique ILLERA DODINO, human rights activist
Oscar BECERRA, community leader
and others
Jorge Enrique Illera Dodino, Oscar Becerra and about 10 other civic and community
leaders working in the municipalities of Convención and El Carmen, department
of Norte de Santander, are reported to be on a "death list".
The "death list" is alleged to have been drawn up by the Departamento
Administrativo de Seguridad (DAS), Civilian Security Department, at its
regional headquarters in the city of Bucaramanga, department of Santander,
and then supplied to a paramilitary group operating in the region so that it
could carry out a series of killings in the municipalities of Convención and
Carmen. The DAS is an official state security body.
Jorge Enrique Illera Dodino is a member of the Equipo Regional para la defensa
de los Derechos Humanos de la Provincia de Ocaña y El Catatumbo, Regional Human
Rights Team for the Defense of Human Rights in the Province of Ocaña and El
Catatumbo and also works as a civic action promoter in the municipality of
El Carmen. Oscar Becerra is a well-known community leader in the village of
Guamalito in the municipality of El Carmen.
Between 1984 and 1985, Jorge Enrique Illera Dodino was detained on several
occasions by members of the armed forces and subjected to torture and threats.
He made several denunciations of the violations he had suffered to the
Personería de El Carmen, the Office of the Ombudsman of El Carmen and the
Procuraduría de Ocaña, Office of the Procurator-General of Ocaña.
Amnesty International is seriously concerned for the safety of Jorge Enrique
Illera Dodino and Oscar Becerra and the other community leaders, given that
in the past individuals whose names have appeared on "death lists" have
subsequently become victims of human rights violations. This concern is
further heightened by the series of extrajudicial executions in recent months
carried out by paramilitary forces operating in the region. Those killed have
included peasant leaders, civic activists, human rights workers and peasant
farmers (for example see UA 386/94, AMR 23/82/94, 26 October 1994 and follow-up
to UA 204/94, AMR 23/84/94, 27 October 1994).
A denunciation of the "death list" has been presented to the Office of the
Ombudsman (Personería), the Office of the Procurator General (Procuraduría
General de la Nación) and the Office of the Attorney General (Fiscalía General
de la Nación).
BACKGROUND INFORMATION
Despite repeated government pledges to protect human rights, members of the
Colombian and security forces together with their paramilitary allies continue
to commit serious violations with virtually total impunity. Civilians,
including community leaders, human rights activists and political activists,
have frequently been the victim of violations. Many paramilitary forces have
been set up and trained by the armed forces, and continue to play a central
role in the Colombian army's counterinsurgency strategy, a strategy
characterized by the systematic violation of human rights. The commitments
2
made by the government of President Ernesto Samper Pizano include a commitment
to eradicate paramilitary groups, to end impunity and to guarantee the
protection of human rights workers.
RECOMMENDED ACTION: Please send telegrams/telexes/faxes/express and airmail
letters either in Spanish or your own language:
- expressing concern for the safety of Jorge Enrique Illera Dodino, Oscar Becerra
and other community leaders in the municipalities of Convención and El Carmen,
department of Norte de Santander, whose names are reported to appear on a "death
list", and urging that all measures necessary to guarantee their safety are
undertaken;
- urging that full and impartial investigations into the "death list" are
undertaken, the results made public and those responsible brought to justice;
- calling for full and impartial investigations into the reported collusion
between the Departamento Administrativo de Seguridad (DAS) who allegedly drew
up the list and paramilitary forces to whom the list was reportedly submitted;
- urging immediate action to eradicate paramilitary forces operating in the
region and to guarantee the safety of human rights workers, in line with
governmental commitments.
APPEALS TO
President of Colombia:
Señor Ernesto Samper Pizano
Presidente de la República
Palacio de Nariño
Santa Fé de Bogotá, Colombia
Telegrams: President Samper, Bogotá, Colombia
Telexes: 44281 PALP CO
Faxes: + 57 1 286 7434/287 7939/284 7186
Salutation:Excelentísimo Sr. Presidente/Dear President Samper
Minister of Defence
Dr. Fernando Botero Zea
Ministro de Defensa Nacional
Ministerio de Defensa Nacional
Avenida El Dorado - Carrera 52
Santafé de Bogotá, Colombia
Telegrams:Ministro de Defensa Botero Zea, Bogota, Colombia
Telexes:42411 INPRE CO; 44561 CFAC CO
Salutation: Sr. Ministro/Dear Minister
Minister of the Interior
Dr. Horacio Serpa Uribe
Ministro de Gobierno
Ministerio de Gobierno
Carrera 8a, No.8-09, Piso 7
0
Santafé de Bogotá, COLOMBIA
Telegrams: Ministro de Gobierno, Bogota, Colombia
Telexes:45406 MINGO CO
Faxes:+ 57 1 281 5884
Salutation:Sr. Ministro/Dear Minister
COPIES OF YOUR APPEALS TO:
Human Rights Organization
3
MINGA
Calle 19 No. 4-88
Santafé 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 19 March 1995.

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