Posts Tagged ‘MOVICE’

2019 Ludovic Trarieux International Human Rights Award goes to Rommel Durán Castellanos of Colombia

October 22, 2019

On 27 May 2019, the Jury of the 24th Ludovic-Trarieux International Human Rights Prize chose the Colombian lawyer Rommel Durán Castellanos, President of the Equipo Jurídico Pueblos (EJP), as the recipient of the 2019 Prize. The Prize will be officially presented to Mr. Durán Castellanos on 8 November 8 at 5 p.m. at the Salle D of the European Convention Center Luxembourg – ECCL. For further information please contact:

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About the Ludovic Trarieux Human Rights Award and for some 15 other awards for lawyers, see:

Rommel Durán Castellanos, 33 years old, is a human rights lawyer and a the president of the ‘Pueblos’ Legal Team (Equipo Juridico Pueblos) and a volunteer with the Committee for Solidarity with Political Prisoners (CSPP), in Bucaramanga, in the northern Cesar Department, as well as a member of the Santander branch of the Committee for Solidarity with Political Prisoners. Since 2007, Rommel Durán has been defending marginalized communities and victims of human rights abuses and carrying out grassroots training workshops on human rights and protection mechanisms. In particular, he provides legal assistance to victims of violations in rural areas, where forcibly displaced small-scale producers are attempting to return to their lands, and victims of such crimes as enforced disappearance, torture and killings, perpetrated by State agents and paramilitary groups.
Rommel Durán faces very serious threats to his life due to his work as a lawyer and has first-hand experience of the violence that he seeks to challenge through his work. He is subject to harassment, including to a campaign of threats, attacks and stigmatization because of his work accompanying small-scale farming communities who are claiming the restitution of their lands under the Colombian Victims and Land Restitution Law.
In his work as a member of the ‘Pueblos’ Legal Team, Rommel Durán supports members of the Pitalito community who maintain that they have been forced, at gunpoint, to sell their land at unfairly low prices. Alongside the Directing Committee of the National Movement of Victims of State Crimes (MOVICE), Rommel Durán accompanied those members of the community who have returned to their lands and has provided them with legal advice and protection during the difficulties they have encountered since their return.
Apart from being stigmatized and falsely (criminally) accused, assumedly by those who have ‘purchased’ the land, the returning members of the community and their (legal) supporters, including Rommel Durán, have also been shot at by armed men during an incident in December 2013 while attempting to verify the state of the community’s crops.
On 9 August 2014, Rommel Durán was arrested in the village Curumaní and detained in poor conditions. The only information given by these policemen at the time was that there was a warrant for alleged conspiracy. However they did not state which judicial office issued the order. His cell phone was snatched from him; he was filmed and photographed illegally and was prevented from calling his own lawyer. He was released after being detained for 20 hours on 10 August. The issue of this certificate suggests that there is no intention holding to account those responsible for Rommel Durán’s arbitrary detention.

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Death threats in Colombia on the rise again

February 12, 2014
Martha Díaz at the 2013 FLD Platform for Human Rights Defenders
(Martha Díaz at the 2013 FLD Platform for Human Rights Defenders)
Death threats abound again in Colombia:
Front Line Defenders report that on 9 February 2014, human rights defender Martha Díaz received the fifth text message to declare her a military target and threaten her with death within three days. All five threats have come from the same phone number. Martha Díaz is the director and legal representative of the Asociación de Familiares Unidas por un Solo Dolor (Association of Relatives United by a Single Sorrow – AFUSODO), an organisation for family members of victims of extrajudicial killings, particularly false positives. She is also the technical secretary of the Atlantic chapter of MOVICE (National Movement of Victims of the State).On Wednesday 12 February,  the President of Parliamentarians for Global Action Ross Robertson has expressed his concern and condemnation of the death threats against a well-known Colombian parliamentarian, Ivan Cepeda is a well-respected Colombian MP and human rights defender as well as against Bogota Mayor Gustavo Petro and human rights defender Alirio Uribe Muñoz (the latter is the 2003 Laureate of the Martin Ennals Award for Human Rights Defenders, portrayed here with his wife in 2003). Alirio Uribe Munoz and spouse MEA 2003


Colombia: Series of death threats against human rights defender Martha Díaz | Front Line.

MP deplores death threats against Colombian MP |

Colombian Human rights defender informed of plan to kill him and his wife

June 11, 2013

On 3 June 2013, an email was sent to Colonel Julián González, Chief of Police for Sucre, Colombia, informing him of a plan to kill human rights defender  Juan David Díaz Chamorro, his wife Malena Martínez, and one other person closely linked to the family. Several other human rights defenders were copied in the email. Juan David Díaz Chamorro is the leader of the Sucre branch of the Movimiento Nacional de Víctimas de Crímenes de EstadoMOVICE (National Movement of Victims of State Crimes) and the son of Eudaldo Díaz, assassinated Mayor of El Roble, Sucre.  Read the rest of this entry »

Continued threats against Colombian human rights defender Martha Díaz

January 28, 2013

On 24 January 2013, human rights defender  Martha Díaz was targeted again with a death threat.

On 24 January, a package in a manila envelope was delivered to the residence of Martha Díaz, which contained a mass card and note with letters cut from a newspaper. The letters stated: “You are dead, you are a collaborator of the guerilla, we are not joking, one of you is going to die”[translated from Spanish]. On 22 January, the human rights defender had already received a pamphlet sent by a group who identified themselves as “Los Rastrojos”.Frontline NEWlogos-1 condensed version - cropped
Martha Díaz is Director of AFUSODO, an organisation of relatives of victims of extrajudicial executions and a member organisation of MOVICE (National Movement of the Victims of State Crimes). Since its creation, AFUSADO has received some 27 threats. Front Line Defenders issued an urgent appeal on death threats received by Martha Díaz on 14 November 2012, and has issued previous appeals on threats against human rights organisations in the Cauca and Valle del Cauca departments.