(Translated by Kevin Funk, a CSN volunteer translator)
New threats and intimidation against human rights organizations and defenders, and the victims of crimes, in the state of Narino.
Humanidad Vigente is urgently informing the national and international community that this past July 21, different human rights organizations working in support of the victims of state crimes in the department of Nariño received an email signed in the name of the “Grupo de Liberación y Justicieron de nuestra sociedad Autodefensas Unidas de Colombia” (Liberation and Avenging Group of the United Self-Defense Forces of Colombia).
The email is directed to organizations like the Permanent Human Rights Committee of Nariño, the AVRE Corporation (Support to Victims of Sociopolitical Violence for Emotional Recuperation), the Movement of Victims of State Crimes, and the Development and Peace Foundation. However, it also mentions different human rights defenders and organizations that have been working in the region for a long time. Amongst these organizations – which are listed in the text – our organization, “Humanidad Vigente Corporación Jurídica” (Humanity in Force Legal Corporation), is mentioned.
The authors of the message – written in an aggressive tone and with coarse language – accuse the threatened organizations and persons of belonging to “urban guerrillas,” of being “defenders of the guerrillas,” and of “seeking to defend the relatives of guerrillas.” Likewise, they show a high degree of disgust in light of the fact that, supposedly, the threatened individuals and groups did not attend the March for Peace and Liberty that was carried out last Sunday, July 20.
The most worrying aspect is that the intimidating message ends with blunt death threats, such as the following: “with grenades and shooting we will free our people from these guerrillas, may blood spill to rid us of your oppression.”
But beyond the intolerance before different political programs – as evidenced in the threat – the message is disturbing since it was sent just days after the first regional assembly of the Victims’ Movement of Nariño.
It alarms us deeply that, added to the polarization that currently divides the country, there is a stigmatization of people or organizations that cannot or do not wish to participate in, or disagree with, the large demonstrations organized by the government and mass media. Likewise it is disturbing that they are catalogued as “guerrillas” or “relatives of the guerrillas,” declaring them a military target, above all keeping in mind that such organizations and human rights defenders are carrying out their activities with the victims of state crimes.
It gives us alarm to know that the people and entities that carry out activities next to the victims of state crimes are submitted to rigorous vigilance, since only hours after Sunday’s march those who didn’t participate were already being threatened. This, in open contradiction of the government’s position which rejects vigilante groups and monitoring, and systematically evades its obligation to provide security and protection, to the people and organizations who dedicate themselves to the defense of human rights.
There are several precedents for the threats, intimidation, killings, illegal raids, and theft of information that people and organizations defending human rights have suffered. The national government has evaded its responsibility in these incidents, classifying them as “self threats.”
What we consider to be most serious is that actions of this type, together with the constantly committed crimes, demonstrate once more the open and free manner in which paramilitary groups operate in Nariño and in other regions of the country, under the euphemism of “emerging bands” that give continuity to military, political and economic control, which have flaunted themselves for years. This occurs before the complicit watch of the Colombian government, which not only does not protect but also endangers the legitimate actions of the victims, their organizations, and any organized expression in defense of human rights.
We encourage the nation and international community to persist in accompanying the victims in their struggle for truth, justice, and redress in Colombia.
PS: We are taking the liberty of sending the message containing the threat in the attached file.
Liberation and Avenging Group of the United Self-Defense Forces of Colombia
SAN JUAN DE PASTO, JULY 20, 2008
THE DEFENSE OF THE PEOPLE IS IN OUR HANDS, THE INJUSTICE OF SO MANY PEOPLE KIDNAPPED SO MANY CHILDREN HARMED, OUR WHOLE CORRUPT SOCIETY INTOLERANCE IN OUR PEOPLE ALL THIS GENERATED BY ARMED STRUGGLE, THAT LOOK TO PERVERSE IDEALS LOOK TO LIVE WELL IN EXCHANGE FOR LIES ABOUT HELPING THE VICTIMS OF VIOLENCE, THESE VICTIMS ARE GUERRILLA TERRORISTS, THAT HAVE BEEN SERVED JUSTICE BY OUR HANDS FOR DAMAGING OUR COUNTRY, OUR SOCIETY THE MOVEMENTS CREATED FOR THE DEFENSE OF HUMAN RIGHTS ARE NOTHING MORE THAN AN URBAN GUERRILLA MOVEMENT WITH WARPED IDEALS, THAT SEEK TO MAKE LIBERATORS BE SEEN AS TERRORISTS AND KNOWING THAT THEY THEMSELVES ARE NOTHING MORE THAN DEFENDERS OF THE GUERRILLAS’ WAR THEY CRITICIZE AND CRITICIZE AND MAKE THEMSELVES SEEM LIKE VICTIMS WHEN THEY ARE THE REAL VICTIMIZERS WE ARE MORE THAN SAVIORS FOR A SOCIETY CLEANSED OF THESE CORRUPT ONES AND IF BLOOD HAS TO BE SPILLED IN OUR COUNTRY TO BRING THESE OPPRESSORS OF LIBERTY TO JUSTICE IT WILL BE SPILLED BECAUSE WE DO NOT WANT ANY MORE OF YOU GUYS, THE COURIERS OF THE GUERRILLAS, AND IF WE HAVE TO GIVE YOU A LESSON AND MAKE YOU UNDERSTAND THAT WITH YOUR DEATHS THE COUNTRY WILL BE FREED FROM BLOOD KIDNAPPINGS VIOLENCE COMMON CRIMES WE WILL DO IT WE WANT A FREE COUNTRY WITH DIGNITY AND PEACE.
WITH YOU, THE COURIERS OF THE GUERRILLAS, DEFENDERS OF THE ILL-BRED OF OUR FATHERLAND.
NEVER WILL THE PEOPLE’S PURPOSE BE CARRIED OUT, OF A COUNTRY AND A DECENT SOCIETY
OUR PURPOSE IS TO MAKE THE PEOPLE OF NARIÑO SEE YOU AS NOTHIING MORE THAN AN URBAN GUERRILLA. WHY DON’T YOU MARCH FOR PEACE AND AGAINST WAR?
WHY ARE YOU A GUERRILLA GROUP?
YOU GUERRILLA SONS OF BITCHES YOU HAVE TO DIE FOR THIS COUNTRY TO BE FREE
THOSE SONS OF BITCHES THAT ARE NAMED DOCTOR MARTHA MELO DELGADO LEADER OF THE GUERRILLAS OF SIMANA THAT CREATES ‘MODEP’ AND ‘MOVICENAR’ GROUPS THAT ARE NOTHIING MORE THAN GUERRILLA GROUPS YOU ARE GOING TO DIE TOGETHER WITH YOUR GROUP AND FOLLOWERS YOU CALL YOURSELF DOCTOR WHEN YOU ARE A SIMPLE GUERRILLA LEADER BLOOD WILL SPILL SO THAT YOUR IDEALS NEVER GET TO OUR PEOPLE FOLLOWED BY JAVIER DODRADO ILL-BRED LEADER OF OUR SOCIETY WITH GRENADES AND SHOOTING WE WILL FREE THIS PEOPLE FROM THESE GUERRILLAS WE WILL EXACT SOCIAL JUSTICE WITH THESE CRIMINALS.
YOUR HELPERS AND GUERRILLAS ALSO THAT DO NOT SEEK PEACE IN COLOMBIA BUT RATHER SEEK TO DEFEND THE FAMILIES OF GUERRILLAS IN MEETINGS AND GROUPS THAT FORM THE DEFENSE OF RELATIVES OF GUERRILLAS THAT DO SO MUCH DAMAGE TO OUR COUNTRY AND OUR PEOPLE
ORGANIZATIONS OF CRIMINAL GUERRILLAS LIKE FUNDEPAZ, CORPORACION AVRE, SIMANA, SIMANA,CPDH…..
THOSE WHO SEEK VIOLENCE AND GUERRILLA WAR IN OUR DEPARTMENT……
YOU WILL DIE AND BLOOD WILL SPILL…..
WITH GRENADES AND SHOOTING WE WILL FREE OUR PEOPLE FROM THESE GUERRILJAS MAY BLOOD SPILL TO RELIEVE US OF YOUR OPPRESSION
MARTHA MELO DELGADO
JESUS ARMANDO ARCINIEGAS
JOSE DARIO LOPEZ
HUMANIDAD VIGENTE COORPORACION JURIDICA
AND ALL THE COLLABORATORS WITH THESE GUERRILLAS
WITH GRENADES AND SHOOTING YOUR MOMENT AWAITS YOU……
Liberation and Avenging Group of the United Self-Defense Forces of Colombia
WE SUPPORT A SOCIAL CLEANSING IN OUR DEPARTMENT…………………………………..