The Inter-American Court of Human Right (IACHR) demands Colombia to
explain why the country failed to compensate families of the 49 victims of a 1997 massacre and why it extradited the paramilitary boss held
responsible for the crime.
According to Spanish press agency Efe, that had access to the july 8 ruling, the Court states that even though the Colombian State had identified Salvatore Mancuso as one of those responsible for the massacre of Mapiripan, it extradited him to the U.S. to face drug charges, which the court considers of less important than the massacres Mancuso is accused of.
“At least one processed former paramilitary leader was extradited from Colombia to another state in the region, even though he had been charged with several crimes related to the serious human rights violations in this case,” the court ruled.
“The Court believes that in the decisions made about the application of certain procedural measures against a person, the consideration of the imputation of gross human rights violations must prevail” and that “the application of measures like extradition may not be used to favor, seek or secure impunity,”
Colombia has until half October to explain what it has done to comply with a 2005 ruling of the same court to compensate the victims of the massacre.
The 1997 massacre of 49 farmers in Mapiripan was committed by the Self Defense Forces of Cordoba and Uraba (ACCU), a paramilitary group led by then highest commander of the AUC, Carlos Castaño and later by Salvatore Mancuso.
Mancuso, who is linked to this massacre, was extradited to the U.S. in May 2008 to face drug charges. In Colombia he is accused of having ordered numerous human rights violations like the massacres of El Salado in 2000 wherein paramilitaries tortured and murdered 58 people, that of La Gabarra in 1999 wherin 50 farmers were murdered and the massacre of El Aro in 1997, wherein 15 people were murdered and numerous women of the village were raped.