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UA 208/94 - Colombia: fear for safety: Isabel Cristina Rincon Bravo

, N° d'index: AMR 23/046/1994

Isbael Cristina Rincon Bravo is being intimidated and harassed by members of the Colombian armed forces, apparently because she has been helping with investigations into the killing of her husband in which the security forces are implicated. Her husband, Henry Humberto Molina, was killed on 7 September 1992 in what may have been an extrajudicial execution. Currently under investigation for the killing are officials attached to the Cacique Nutibara battalion and police based in the town of El Carmen de Atrato, Choco department.

EXTERNAL (for general distribution) AI Index: AMR 23/46/94
Distr: UA/SC
UA 208/94 Fear for Safety 1 June 1994
COLOMBIA Isabel Cristina RINCON BRAVO (f)
Isabel Cristina Rincón Bravo is being intimidated and harassed by members of
the Colombian armed forces, apparently because she has been helping with the
investigations into the killing of her husband in which the security forces
are implicated. Given that witnesses and relatives of victims are
systematically harassed, threatened and even killed in Colombia to stop them
testifying in investigations, Amnesty International is seriously concerned
for Isabel Rincón's safety.
At about 11am on 20 May 1994 a group of soldiers forced their way into "El
Veinte", a restaurant in El Carmen de Atrato, Chocó department, and demanded
to know where Isabel Rincón was. After interrogating the restaurant's clients,
the soldiers, believed to be from the Cacique Nutibara battalion, Batallón
Cacique Nutibara, and/or the Granaderos battalion, Batallón Granaderos, left
in the direction of the town of Tutenendo.
"El Veinte" had been owned by Isabel Rincón's husband, Henry Humberto Molina,
who was killed on 7 September 1992 in what may have been an extrajudicial
execution. Currently under investigation for the killing are officials and
subofficials attached to the Cacique Nutibara battalion and police based in
the town of El Carmen de Atrato. Isabel Rincón has been helping with the
investigations.
On 23 May an unknown vehicle was parked outside "El Veinte". The vehicle's
occupants appeared to be making a reconnaissance of the area and of those
entering and leaving the restaurant. Those living and working close by have
reportedly been visited by personnel from the Judicial Police (SIJIN), whose
base is in the capital of Chocó, Quibdó.
BACKGROUND INFORMATION
In recent years widespread and systematic human rights violations have occurred
in Colombia, including extrajudicial executions, "disappearance", torture and
arbitrary arrest. President César Gaviria Trujillo has repeatedly pledged
his government's commitment to protect human rights. However, members of the
Colombian armed and security forces continue to commit serious abuses with
virtual impunity. When cases of human rights violations do reach the courts,
witnesses have been systematically harassed and even killed to prevent them
from testifying. Relatives and friends of victims, lawyers and human rights
defenders are threatened or killed if they persist with their denunciations.
RECOMMENDED ACTION: Please send telegrams/telexes/faxes/express and airmail
letters either in Spanish or in your own language:
- expressing concern at the reported intimidation of Isabel Rincón by members
of the Colombian security forces, particularly in view of the current
investigations into her husband's killing in which they are implicated;
- urging that there be an immediate and thorough investigation into the reports
of intimidation, the results of which should be made public and those found
responsible brought to justice;
- urging that all possible measures be taken to protect the life of Isabel
Rincón so that she can carry out her lawful activities in safety.
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APPEALS TO
1. President of Colombia:
Señor Presidente César Gaviria Trujillo
Presidente de la República
Palacio de Nariño
Santafé de Bogotá, Colombia
Telegrams: President Gaviria, Bogotá, Colombia
Telexes: 44281 PALP CO
Faxes: + 57 1 286 7434/287 7939
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
Santafé de Bogotá, Colombia
Telegrams: Procurador General Arrieta, Bogotá, Colombia
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 35 No. 7-25 piso 5
Santafé de Bogotá, Colombia
Telegrams:Defensor del Pueblo Trivino, Defensoria del Pueblo,
Bogota, Colombia
Faxes:+ 57 1 288 6683
Salutation: Estimado Dr Triviño/Dear Dr. Triviño
4. Minister of Defence
Dr. Rafael Pardo Rueda
Ministro de Defensa Nacional
Ministerio de Defensa Nacional
Avenida Eldorado - Carrera 52
Santafé 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
COPIES OF YOUR APPEALS TO:
Alternative Legal Association
SEMBRAR
AA 34692
Santafé de Bogotá
Colombia
and to diplomatic representatives of Colombia accredited to your country
PLEASE SEND APPEALS IMMEDIATELY. Check with the International Secretariat,
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or your section office, if sending appeals after 13 July 1994.

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