Safety fears for trade unionists in Colombia
HE Mr Mauricio Rodriguez
Embassy of Colombia
3 Hans Crescent
15 August 2012
Safety fears for trade unionists Oscar Arturo Orozco and Wilson Jaramillo
On behalf of the TUC, British workers and the 6.1 million members of our affiliated unions I write to express our concerns for the safety of President Oscar Arturo Orozco and Secretary General Wilson Jaramillo of the Caldas branch of Central Unitaria de Trabajadores (CUT).
Both men, also members of the Movimento Nacional de Victimas de Crimenes de Estado (MOVICE) and the Sindicato de Trabajadores de la Electricidad de Colombia (SINTRAELECOL) were travelling by car on the 4th August, between Manizales and the municipality of Palestina in Caldas Department, when shots were fired at the car by two men on a motorbike and from others standing at the side of the road. Fortunately neither man was injured. They had been on their way to a meeting with local fishermen about the impact the Caldas Hydroelectric Power Plant has had on their livelihoods.
We understand that death threats have repeatedly been left at the office of SINTRAELECOL, most recently in mid July when the threat contained a picture of bullet cartridges and that 12 trade unionists have been killed in Colombia in this year alone.
This attack comes at a time when there was an order to remove the protection Mr Orozco was receiving as part of the reduction in the budget of Ministry of Interior Protection Programme.
We ask that you:
Urge the authorities to take appropriate measures to protect them, in strict accordance of their wishes;
Call on the authorities to order a full and impartial investigation into the attacks against Mr Oroczo and Mr Wilson and previous incidents against members of CUT Caldas; publish the results and bring those responsible to justice.
Briefing document (400 words) issued 16 Aug 2012
This page http://www.tuc.org.uk/international/tuc-21333-f0.cfm
printed 23 May 2013 at 15:38 hrs by 184.108.40.206