26 November 2001


Further information on UA 102/01 issued 19 April 2001 and re-issued 8 August 2001

Fear for safety



Civilian inhabitants of rural communities of the Alto and Bajo Naya regions, Valle del Cauca and Cauca departments



Amnesty International is seriously concerned at reports that army-

backed paramilitary troops have increased their presence in the

northern area of Cauca and southern area of Valle del Cauca over

the last few days. There are particular concerns for the safety of the

25,000 inhabitants in the Alto and Bajo Naya region in the

municipalities of Timba, Suarez, Buenos Aires and Buenaventura.

Since the massacre of over 32 civilians in this area in April 2001,

there have been repeated rumours and threats of a further massacre.


Civilian inhabitants of the municipalities of Timba, Suarez and

Buenos Aires have reported that there now are about 300

paramilitaries in the area. This raises fears of a paramilitary incursion

in these municipalities, especially in the areas of Alto and Bajo Naya

and on the shores of River Yurumangui.


On 11 April 2001, over 32 peasants farmers were killed in the

municipalities of Buenos Aires and Timba (Alto Naya) in a massacre

reportedly carried out by paramilitary groups. The massacre took

place even though the Inter-American Commission on Human Rights

had called on the Colombian authorities to take action to protect the

civilian communities on 3 April, in reaction to reports of an imminent

paramilitary attack and despite the heavy military presence in the



FURTHER RECOMMENDED ACTION: Please send appeals to

arrive as quickly as possible:

- expressing concern for the safety of the indigenous and Afro-

Colombian communities living along the River Naya in Valle del

Cauca and Cauca departments

- expressing concern about the increasing army-backed paramilitary

presence in the region and urging the authorities to take action to

protect the civilian population;

- reminding the authorities that if they fail protect the civilian

population, it will seem that the paramilitaries are operating with the

complicity of the security forces;

- calling for a full and impartial investigation into links between the

security forces and paramilitary groups operating in Valle del Cauca

and Cauca departments, urging that the results are made public and

those found responsible for supporting and participating in such

groups are brought to justice;

- urging the authorities to take immediate action to dismantle

paramilitary groups, in line with stated government commitments and

United Nations recommendations.



President of the Republic:

Senor Presidente Andres Pastrana Arango

Presidente de la Republica

Palacio de Narino

Carrera 8 No.7-26

Santafe de Bogota, Colombia

Telegram: Presidente, Bogota, Colombia

Fax: 011 57 1 566 2071 / 336 2109 / 337 1351

Salutation: Dear President / Excmo. Sr. Presidente



Minister of Defense:

Dr. Gustavo Bell

Ministro de Defensa Nacional

Ministerio de Defensa Nacional

Avenida Eldorado CAN - Carrera 52

Santafe de Bogota, Colombia

Telegram: Ministro de Defensa, Bogota, Colombia

Telex: 396 42411 INPRE CO; 396 44561 CFAC CO

Fax: 011 57 1 286 4126 / 281 1213 / 222 1874

Salutation: Dear Minister / Sr. Ministro


Commander of the III Brigade of the Colombian Army (in charge of

Alto Naya region):

Comandante III Brigada del Ejercito Nacional

General Francisco Rene Pedraza

Cali, Valle del Cauca, Colombia

Telegrams: Comandante, III Brigada Ejercito, Cali

Fax: 011 57 2 330 7161 (Say 'Me da el tono de fax, por


Salutation: Dear Commander / Sr. Comandante



Non-governmental Human Rights Organization Sembrar

Apartado Aereo 18621, Santafe de Bogota, Colombia


Ambassador Luis Alberto Moreno

Embassy of Colombia

2118 Leroy Pl. NW

Washington DC 20008

Fax: 1 202 232 8643


Please send appeals immediately. Check with the Colorado office

between 9:00 am and 6:00 pm, Mountain Time, weekdays only, if

sending appeals after January 7, 2002.


Ensuring letter-writing actions are not disrupted by new security



In the light of current security concerns, including concerns about

anthrax being sent through the post to media and government

addresses, authorities in the US and elsewhere will be implementing

security procedures to ensure the safety of mail. Letters to

government officials will be carefully scrutinized and this may mean a

significant delay before they reach the recipients.


This may have an impact on how we can best ensure that appeals on

UA cases and other actions are

delivered as quickly as possible.


Below are some simple suggestions for activists involved in sending

appeals to minimize potential

disruption and to ensure that our concerns reach the authorities as

quickly as possible. Where possible

consider using fax, e-mail etc or postcards, rather than sealed

envelopes, to send appeal letters to authorities.


If letters are sent:

- put a return address on the envelope (the letter should be

sent from the same area)

- provide a complete address and title and write clearly

- don't put lots of enclosures in envelopes

- don't seal envelopes with tape


Amnesty International is a worldwide grassroots movement

that promotes and defends human rights.


Please do not repost this appeal to any part of the Internet

without prior permission from Amnesty International. Thank you for

your help with this appeal.


Urgent Action Network

Amnesty International USA

PO Box 1270

Nederland CO 80466-1270

Email: uan@aiusa.org


Phone: 303 258 1170

Fax: 303 258 7881