PUBLIC AI Index: AMR 23/65/99
15 September 1999
Further information on UA 103/99 (AMR 23/40/99, 11 May 1999) - Possible
“disappearance” / Fear for safety
COLOMBIAProfessor Dario Betancourt Echeverry
The remains of Professor Dario Betancourt Echeverry’s body were discovered
on 2 September 1999 in a rural area outside the capital, Bogotá.
Since his abduction on 30 April, it has been reported that his name had been
linked to armed opposition groups in military intelligence files. Academics,
human rights defenders and trade unionists whose names have appeared in such
files have also been threatened, “disappeared” and extrajudicially executed.
In 1998 the 20
Brigade of the Colombian army, responsible for military
intelligence, was disbanded after it was implicated in human rights violations
against people on whom they had filed false information.
The Colombian government has repeatedly said it is committed to revising
military intelligence archives in order to prevent further human rights
violations. It has failed to fulfill these commitments.
An investigation has been launched by the authorities into his abduction on
30 April and his subsequent murder.
FURTHER RECOMMENDED ACTION: Please send telexes/faxes/express/airmail letters
in Spanish or in your own language:
- urging the Colombian authorities to continue their investigations into the
abduction and killing of Professor Echeverry, to make the results public and
bring those responsible to justice;
- calling on the Colombian government to fulfill its commitment to revise
military intelligence archives to prevent further human rights violations.
APPEALS TO (fax numbers can be very difficult to obtain at certain times):
President of Colombia:
Señor Presidente Andrés Pastrana, Presidente de la República
Palacio de Nariño, Carrera 8 No. 7-26, Santafé de Bogotá, Colombia
Telexes:44281 PALP CO
Faxes:+ 57 1 284 2186 / 286 7434 / 337 1351
Salutation:Excelentísimo Sr. Presidente / Dear President Pastrana
Dr. Alfonso Gómez Méndez,
Fiscal General de la Nación, Fiscalía General de la Nación,
Diagonal 22B 5201,Apartado Aéreo 29855, Santafé de Bogotá, Colombia
Faxes:+ 57 1 570 2022 (If the call is answered, say “Fax, por favor” and wait
for the signal)
Salutation: Estimado Dr. / Dear Dr.
Minister of the Interior
Dr. Néstor Humberto Martínez, Ministro del Interior
Ministerio del Interior, Carrera 8, No.8-09, Piso 2
Santafé de Bogotá, COLOMBIA
Telexes:45406 MINGO CO