EXTERNAL (for general distribution) AI Index: AMR 23/50/94
This is a limited action. Please restrict appeals to 25 per Section
30 June 1994
Further information on UA 241/94 (AMR 23/48/94, 21 June 1994) - "Disappearance"
/ Death Threats
COLOMBIA Lacides BANDERA ARIZA
new names: Julia Isabel AVILA PACHECO (f)
Ledis Teresa VILLALOBOS (f)
Amnesty International has just received news of the release of Lacides Bandera
Ariza who was feared "disappeared" after his arbitrary detention by soldiers
of the Batallón de Magangue (Magangue Battalion). He had been detained in
Puerto Rico, Municipality of Pinillos, department of Bolívar on 3 June 1994,
reportedly interrogated by the army and released several days after his
detention. Reports state that he is in good health.
However, on 17 June, two women, Julia Isabel Avila Pacheco, mother of a
seven-year-old child and Ledis Teresa Villalobos, mother of a one-year-old
child, "disappeared" from the same village of Puerto Rico.
Reports indicate that the two women left their homes at 6.00pm on 17 June to
buy medicines for one of the children who was ill. Julia Isabel's mother
expected the two women to return that night, and when they did not she reported
that they were missing to the community authorities. She was told that some
people had seen the women going towards the military base.
The family members and the municipal police inspector went to the base where
the Patrulla Mixta del Batallón Nariño No.2 de Magangue (Mixed Patrol of the
Nariño No.2 Battalion of Magangue), the same battalion responsible for the
detention of Lacides Bandera Ariza, is situated. There, the same lieutenant
who had previously denied the detention of Lacides Bandera, claimed that the
two women were not at the base.
Amnesty International is seriously concerned for the safety of the two women
given that members of the community, including Elías María, had received death
threats when Lacides Bandera Ariza had been detained and that the local community
is facing frequent verbal and physical threats from the army.
FURTHER RECOMMENDED ACTION: Please send telegrams/telexes/faxes/express and
airmail letters in Spanish or your own language:
- welcoming Lacides Bandera Ariza's release, and urging that his safety be
- expressing concern for the safety of Julia Isabel Avila Pacheco and Ledis
Teresa Villalobos who have not been seen since 17 June 1994 when they
"disappeared" from the community of Puerto Rico, Municipality of Pinillos,
department of Bolívar;
- urging that immediate steps be taken to establish their whereabouts;
- urging that, if in detention, they be humanely treated and allowed access
to lawyers and relatives;
- urging that if in detention, they be charged with a recognizable criminal
offence or released immediately;