CONDITION THE EXTRADITION OF "HH" UNTIL THE JUDICIAL PROCESSES FOR CRIMES AGAINST HUMANITY HAVE FINISHED
(Colombia) (Author: MOVICE; CCEEU) [07/31/2008]

Lunes 11 de agosto de 2008, por Prensa - Colectivo

The Coordination Colombia - Europe - United States and the National Movement of Victims of State Crimes express their concern and turmoil with respect to the announcement made by the Ministry of Interior to authorize the extradition to the United States of well-known paramilitary chief Ever Veloza, aka HH, who is implicated in a criminal process within the framework of Law 975 of 2005, also known as the Justice and Peace Law.

The Coordination Colombia - Europe - United States and the National Movement of Victims of State Crimes express their concern and turmoil with respect to the announcement made by the Ministry of Interior to authorize the extradition to the United States of well-known paramilitary chief Ever Veloza, aka HH, who is implicated in a criminal process within the framework of Law 975 of 2005, also known as the Justice and Peace Law.

This situation confirms the Colombian government is not interested in knowing the truth about the crimes committed by paramilitaries, especially when testimony by these persons could implicate active duty military members, businesspeople, and politicians close to the executive branch as responsible for carrying out joint actions with paramilitary groups and encouraging, supporting, and financing their criminal actions.

As in the case of the 14 paramilitary chiefs extradited last May by means of an arbitrary and hasty decision, in the case of paramilitary chief Ever Veloza, aka HH, who, before prosecutors from the Justice and Peace Unit, confessed to having jointly participated with the public force -as well as with the complicity of politicians and businesspeople- in such criminal actions as massacres, forced disappearances, acts of sexual violence against women, forced displacement, recruitment of children, and the murder of trade unionists. The president’s rush to extradite Veloza clearly demonstrates that a pact of silence in exchange for the impunity of their crimes is concealed behind the negotiations between the paramilitaries and the government.

The turning over of the paramilitary chiefs to the US government so they are tried for drug trafficking charges and not for crimes against humanity prevents the victims from being able to make effective use of mechanisms to achieve truth, justice, and comprehensive reparation for the crimes committed against them, as was recently established by the Supreme Court of Justice in a ruling holding the president and State authorities responsible for the violation of their rights.

The Coordination Colombia-Europe-United States and the National Movement of Victims of State Crimes calls upon:

1) The Colombian and US governments to condition the extradition of paramilitary chief Ever Veloza, aka HH, until his judicial processes for crimes against humanity have finished.

2) The Supreme Court of Justice and the Procurator-General (Procurador General de la Nación) to take the necessary steps to prevent this extradition from causing irreversible damage to the effectiveness of the rights to justice, truth, reparation, and the preeminence of the international right of human rights with respect to the non-applicability of statutory limitations, the priority of trying crimes against humanity and war crimes, and the responsibility of States in investigating, prosecuting, and punishing the responsible parties and their collaborators in the commission of these atrocious crimes.

3) The international community to urge the Colombian government to fulfill its international commitments taken on with respect to the protection of the rights of the victims to truth, justice, and comprehensive reparation.

Bogotá, July 31, 2008

- COORDINATION COLOMBIA-EUROPE-UNITED STATES (EXECUTIVE COMMITTEE)
- NATIONAL MOVEMENT OF VICTIMS OF STATE CRIMES

Afiliaciones

Afiliado a la Federación Internacional de Derechos Humanos
y la Organización Mundial contra la Tortura
Estatus Consultivo en la OEA

José Alvear Restrepo

Nace en Medellín el 1 de julio de 1913 en el seno de una familia de profundas convicciones religiosas y bajo los parámetros de la ideología del partido conservador. Realiza sus estudios en la Facultad de Derecho de la Universidad de Antioquia, donde se gradúa de Abogado con una brillante tesis titulada: "Conflictos del trabajo: la huelga"

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