Human Rights Abuses in Colombia: Statement from Wales TUC Executive Committee

Justice For Colombia News | on: Thursday, 13 March 2008

The following statement about Colombia was agreed at the Wales TUC Executive Committee on the 12 March 2008:

The Wales TUC Executive Committee calls on the UK Government to withdraw all military aid to Colombia and to replace it with humanitarian aid. We further demand that the Colombian Government takes action to stop all human rights abuses and murders and brings the perpetrators to justice.

The Wales TUC strongly condemns the murders of three trade unionists that have taken place in the last ten days. Gildardo Antonio Gomez and Carmen Cecilia Carvajal Ramirez, both of the teachers' trade union FECODE, have been shot and killed. Leonidas Gomez Rozo, of the bank workers' trade union UNEB, was brutally murdered in his home.

Amongst numerous violations, 4,000 trade unionists have been murdered in recent years as well as many thousands of others including human rights defenders, journalists, student leaders and members of the political opposition.

The Wales TUC also expresses its sorrow at the death of Eliberto Poveda, President of the agricultural workers' union, SINTRAPAZ, who died under house arrest.

The Wales TUC is extremely disappointed that Minister of State for the Foreign and Commonwealth Office, Dr Kim Howells, has failed to acknowledge an invitation to him, issued in January, to discuss continuing and abhorrent human rights abuses in Colombia with the Wales TUC General Council. Wales TUC is also deeply concerned that the publication of a photo of Dr Howells with General Mario Montoya, the Commander of the Colombian National Army undermines international support for the Colombian trade union movement and its continuing struggle against oppression.

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  • Colombian trade unionists will be attending the Wales TUC Conference in Llandudno that takes place 21-23 May.

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