UK Parliament: Written answers on Colombia

Justice For Colombia News | on: Friday, 30 January 2015

This week Hugo Swire, Minister of State, Foreign and Commonwealth Office, replied to two questions relating to ongoing concerns about the Colombian peace process and the current state of human rights in Colombia. On the 26th January 2015 Jeffrey Donaldson MP (Shadow DUP Spokesperson) asked Hugo Swire MP what read more



Irish Parliament approves EU-Colombia Free Trade Agreement in spite of opposition

Justice For Colombia News | on: Thursday, 29 January 2015

Bad news for the campaign against the EU-Colombia Free Trade agreement as the Irish Parliament voted yesterday to approve the FTA signed between the European Union and Colombia. The agreement raised considerable concerns amongst human rights and trade union organisations who viewed the signing of an agreement as irresponsible whilst read more



Threats and attacks against thirteen union activists

News from Colombia | on: Wednesday, 28 January 2015

The oil workers’ union, USO, one of the most threatened in Colombia, has revealed that in recent weeks thirteen of its activists have received threats or have been attacked. The incidents took place across the country. The treasurer of the union, David Mauricio Gomez, was threatened by the paramilitary groups read more



ELN guerrillas agree peace agenda with government

News from Colombia | on: Wednesday, 28 January 2015

Whilst the peace process between the Colombian government and Colombia’s largest guerrilla force, the FARC, continues to advance well into its second year, separate peace talks with the second largest guerrilla insurgency, the ELN have also been taking place. An announcement was made on 18 January 2015 that a six read more



Colombia questions in Parliament

Justice For Colombia News | on: Monday, 26 January 2015

Kerry McCarthy (Shadow Minister (Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs); Bristol East, Labour) To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs, what recent discussions he has had with read more



Carlos Alberto Pedraza Salcedo Leading Activist Murdered in Bogota

News from Colombia | on: Friday, 23 January 2015

Carlos Alberto Pedraza Salcedo, a leading human rights activist has been found murdered in a village outside Bogota, two days after disappearing in the capital on his way to a meeting. Carlos Alberto was a member of Congreso de los Pueblos – a civil society movement which was involved in read more



Peasants Hand Over Soldiers Detained After Killing

News from Colombia | on: Tuesday, 20 January 2015

Argelia, Cauca On Sunday 18 January troops of the Colombian army’s 3rd Division stationed at a checkpoint near the village of El Plateado shot and killed 25 year-old Faiber Antonio Erazo. Mr Erazo was driving a motorbike towards the army checkpoint when troops opened fire, shooting him in the thorax. read more



Army hand out leaflets endangering activists

News from Colombia | on: Tuesday, 20 January 2015

On Sunday 11 January a leaflet with the logo of the 7th Brigade of the fourth division of the National Army was distributed in the Municipality of Castillo Meta. The leaflet singled out two local activists, Raul Moreno Ibague and Bladimir Lozano Perdomo, as well as other leaders within read more



Prison guards assault prisoners at the “Colombian Guantanamo”

News from Colombia | on: Friday, 16 January 2015

A human rights organisation monitoring the treatment of political prisoners in Colombia has released information regarding a series of abuses committed on 15 January 2014 by prison guards at the Tramacua prison in the Valledupar region of Colombia. They are now calling for the prison to be closed and the read more



Parliamentary Question on Colombia

Justice For Colombia News | on: Thursday, 15 January 2015

David Anderson (Blaydon, Labour) To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs, with reference to the finding by UNHCR that there were 40 killings of read more



The horror of “chop houses” surfaces once more

News from Colombia | on: Thursday, 15 January 2015

Paramilitary violence in Colombia has often gone way beyond the imaginable. Numerous demobilised paramilitary soldiers have reported how they used extreme violence as part of a deliberate strategy to gain control over communities. This strategy has been seen most recently in the port town of Buenaventura – Colombia’s most important read more



President Santos takes important steps towards bilateral ceasefire

News from Colombia | on: Thursday, 15 January 2015

In what is another enormous step towards what would be a truly historic moment on the path towards peace in Colombia, President Santos has told his negotiators to initiate discussions towards the agreement of a bilateral ceasefire. Since the peace talks officially began in November 2012, the FARC have carried read more



Former senator and peace activist targeted by paramilitary group

News from Colombia | on: Wednesday, 14 January 2015

Former Colombian congresswoman Piedad Cordoba, a close colleague of Justice for Colombia, was sent a horrific death threat this week as a funeral wreath was sent to her home. The wreath appears to be from the Aguilas Negras, a paramilitary group responsible for death threats to other activists read more



Another court declares state directly involved in formation of paramilitaries, demands apology

News from Colombia | on: Monday, 12 January 2015

The High Court of Medellin has found the Colombian State responsible both through failing to act and through direct involvement in the abuses committed by the paramilitary units set up in northwest Colombia. The ACCU as they were known were the main paramilitary group to later form the United Self read more



Prison authority strikes bring already crisis hit legal system to a standstill

News from Colombia | on: Monday, 12 January 2015

The Colombian prison authorities, INPEC, have now been on strike for five months. Whilst the strike is only being observed by a minority 3,800 of the 15,000 INPEC workers, they have managed to bring the prison system to a standstill. One of the principal problems in Colombian prisons, affecting political read more



UNISON nominate Huber Ballesteros for Artur Svensonn award

Justice For Colombia News | on: Wednesday, 7 January 2015

Britain's second largest trade union UNISON has nominated Huber Ballesteros for the prestigious Artur Svensonn award. This comes just a short time since Huber was nominated by a number of national and international trade union bodies, as well as MPs and members of the House of Lords, for the Silver read more



Labour MP questions ministers on Colombia

Justice For Colombia News | on: Wednesday, 7 January 2015

5 January 2015 Kerry McCarthy (Shadow Minister (Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs); Bristol East, Labour) To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs, if he will raise read more



New Amnesty report looks at human rights in the Americas

News from Colombia | on: Tuesday, 6 January 2015

Colombia once again features as the most violent place in the Americas to be a human rights defender. The UN recorded at least 40 killings in the first nine months of 2014. To read the report click here. read more



No peace for Colombian political prisoners, yet

News from Colombia | on: Monday, 5 January 2015

By W. T. Whitney Jr. of INSPP As a new year begins, the International Network in Solidarity with Colombia’s Political Prisoners renews its call for freedom for political prisoners in Colombia. (The present writer is a member of this organization; see http://www.inspp.org). Indeed, the time is long past read more



Human rights defender suffers acid attack

News from Colombia | on: Monday, 5 January 2015

In what is becoming a growing tool in the broad arsenal used by the perpetrators of attacks against activists in Colombia, a human rights leader in the Pacific region of Nariño was attacked with acid on 13 December 2014. Diana Montilla is the spokesperson for the Movement for the Victims read more



Peasant killed by Army and dressed up as a combatant days before Christmas

News from Colombia | on: Monday, 5 January 2015

In the northeastern region of Catatumbo, where peasants struggle daily to provide for their families whilst having to resist at the same time the damaging consequences of transnational biofuel and mining projects and the resultant persecution from state forces and paramilitaries, another peasant has been killed by the Colombian army. read more