On October 26, unidentified persons threatened to kill Ms. Ingrid Vergara, leader of National Movement of Victims of State (MOVICE) in Sicelejo, Colombia.
We ask that you send your letters (Spanish version below); to the indicated email addresses, demanding that the Colombian authorities guarantee the security of Ingrid Vergara and his family.
The Committee for human rights in Latin America (CDHAL) is a Canadian organization that exists since 1976 and is monitoring the situation of human rights throughout Latin America.
We have been urged to intervene in relation to threats received by Mrs. Ingrid Vergara, leader of National Movement of Victims of State Crimes in Sincelejo (Sucre), Colombia.
According to information we received, on October 26, on her way to school in Sincelejo, the daughter of Mrs. Ingrid Vergara, Cendy Torres, fourteen years old, was followed by a white car with tinted windows and no license plate. When the vehicle slowed, two children who were passing by approached the car, and then went to tell her: “they'll send word that you tell your mom to keep quiet if she wants to reach New Year”. Afterwards, the car was gone.
Ms. Cendy Torres had already been monitored by the same car the afternoon of 19 October, the morning of 20 October and the afternoon of Oct. 21. Furthermore, on 21 October, neighbours reported to Mrs. Ingrid Vergara that a white van with tinted windows had happened several times at her home at reduced speed.
Previously, Mrs. Ingrid Vergara had suffered a series of death threats and intimidation. The most recent threat was an anonymous e-mail she received on July 2 2009, inviting her to her own funeral and speaking to her like if she was part of a guerrilla.
These threats appear to be unacceptable, with the aggravation of deliberately engaging in it a minor of 14 years. Likewise demonstrate the continued threats and harassment that human rights defenders and members of social organizations in Colombia currently face.
Given the seriousness of the situation, we urge you to:
1. Immediately adopt the most appropriate measures to safeguard the lives, safety and physical and psychological integrity of Mrs. Ingrid Vergara and her daughter Cendy Torres;
2.carry out an independent, thorough and impartial investigation about the threats and acts of harassment and intimidation which have been subjected Mrs. Ingrid Vergara and Ms. Cendy Torres, in order to identify those responsible, bring them before a competent, independent, fair and impartial court and apply them penal and/or administrative sanctions provided by law;
3. ensure an end to all forms of aggression, harassment and violence against human rights defenders in Colombia;
4. ensure the implementation of the provisions of the Declaration on Human Rights Defenders, adopted by the UN General Assembly on December 1998, particularly in regard to the right that everyone has “individually and in association with others, to promote ant to strive for the protection and realization of human rights and fundamental freedoms at the national and international levels ” (Art.1) as well as in regards to the duty of the State of ensuring “the protection by the competent authorities of everyone, individually and in association with others, against any violence, threats, retaliation, de facto or de jure adverse discrimination, pressure or any other arbitrary action as a consequence of his or her legitimate exercise of the rights referred to in the present Declaration ” (Art.12.2);
5. in general, guarantee respect for human rights and fundamental freedoms throughout the country in accordance with international standards of human rights ratified by Colombia.
For our part, we inform you that we will closely monitor the conduct of officials in charge of justice in relation to this unacceptable situation.