Soldiers Abduct Peasant Farmer

News from Colombia | on: Thursday, 20 March 2008

Soldiers, from the notorious 30th Brigade of the Colombian Army, have abducted peasant farmer Jose del Carmen Duran from his home in the village of Costa Rica in the Teorama area of Norte de Santander department. The soldiers raided Mr Duran's home on March 18th and interrogated him for 15 hours before taking him away. His fate is unknown though the unit has been responsible for multiple cases of extra-judicial executions.

After repeatedly accusing Mr Duran of being a guerrilla sympathiser witnesses say that the soldiers took him away towards the village of La Cecilia. He has not been seen since though the unit has a history of detaining civilians and then murdering them and claiming that they were guerrillas killed in combat.

Human rights groups and trade unions in Colombia have accused the commander of the 30th Brigade, General Paulino Coronado, of encouraging such killings in order to ensure that his unit has a high body count one of the key measures of successes in the Colombian military.

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