The International Office for Human Rights Action on Colombia

Six million Colombian displaced persons and refugees continue to await public support from the EU

On Thursday, June 20, is the World Refugee Day and June 27 is the World Day against Torture, days that unfortunately remind us of the tragic reality in Colombia.

On Thursday, June 20, is the World Refugee Day and June 27 is the World Day against Torture, days that unfortunately remind us of the tragic reality in Colombia, which is taking place alongside the mainstream news reports about the current dialogue process in Havana between the Government of Santos and the FARC.

World Refugee Day – We ask the EU to break its silence on the million of Colombian displaced persons and refugees

Colombia is the 7th major source country of refugees in the world (UNHCR) and the country with the highest number of displaced people within its own territory (IDPs).

Today, June 20th, marks World Refugee Day. According to figures, Colombia is the 7th major source country of refugees in the world (UNHCR) and the country with the highest number of displaced people within its own territory (IDPs). In Colombia there are 5.5 million, according to figures from the Consultancy for Human Rights and Displacement (Consultoría para los DDHH y el Desplazamiento – Codhes), and 3.9 million according to figures from the Presidential Agency for Social Action and International Cooperation – Agencia Presidencial para la Acción Social y la Cooperación Internacional – two dramatic numbers. Colombia has been placed ahead of Sudan (5.2 million of IDPs according to the NGO IDCM), Afghanistan and Iraq in numbers of IDPs, but this drama has not been the subject of international alerts or global press coverage.

We ask that the EU supports land resistance initiatives to help put a stop to displacement in Colombia

In five years at least 71 leaders claiming land restitution have been killed. Colombia is the country with the highest number of displaced persons in the world. Five and a half million people have been driven from their lands.

April 17 marks the International Day of Peasant Struggle. In Colombia the rural population is faced with one of the worst humanitarian tragedies in the world. According to the Consultancy for Human Rights and Displacement (Consultoría para los Derechos Humanos y el Desplazamiento – Codhes), during 2011 about 260,000 people were displaced in Colombia, more than 710 people a day. The number of displaced persons in Colombia reached nearly 5.5 million in 2011. This vast number of war victims is composed mainly of peasant farmers, indigenous peoples and Afro-Colombians.

Human rights situation in Colombia – DROI hearing – 19 March 2012

Analysis on the situation in Colombia on the occasion of the hearing of the Human Rights Sub-Committee of the European Parliament. It deals with, among others, the persistent violations of IHL, impunity and attacks against human rights defenders.

In the face of the lack of guarantees for the fulfilment of human rights in Colombia, continued impunity, the persistence of the armed conflict, as well as the lack of mechanisms in the Agreement to guarantee real protection for human rights, OIDHACO considers that the European Parliament should not ratify the Agreement with Colombia while there are not significant changes with regards to these issues. The ratification of the Agreement with Colombia would give out a signal of approval for the policies of the Colombian government, and ignore the serious violations of human rights and international humanitarian law committed in the country.

Newsletter 10

European Union – Colombia free trade treaty: the EU’s prestige at stake The third round of trade negotiations between the EU and the three Andean countries (Colombia, Ecuador, and Peru) was held in Brussels from 4 to 8 May.

The third round of trade negotiations between the EU and the three Andean countries (Colombia, Ecuador, and Peru) was held in Brussels from 4 to 8 May.  These negotiations have, since January 2009, replaced negotiations for an association agreement between the EU and the Andean Community.

Newsletter 15

DAS: Operation Europe Although Colombia’s intelligence services have played an active role in the repression of civil society movements and human rights organisations for several decades now, the creation of the G-3 special group by the DAS

Although Colombia’s intelligence services have played an active role in the repression of civil society movements and human rights organisations for several decades now, the creation of the G-3 special group by the DAS (Administrative Department of Security) in 2004 marked a new departure.  From this date onwards, a systematic policy of phone-tapping, harassment and intimidation began, with its main victims being human rights defenders, Supreme and Constitutional Court judges, journalists and members of the opposition.  Because they were critical of government policies, all of them were treated like dangerous criminals and as a threat to state interests, and thus the subject of relentless persecution.