An organization dedicated to defending press freedom in the Americas demands justice for two Colombian journalists murdered 20 years ago, reports Caracol Radio.
The Inter-American Press Association (AIPA) confirmed that it lodged a formal complaint with the Inter-American Commission on Human Rights (IACHR) last Friday condemning impunity in the case, which was never brought to trial.
29-year-old Julio Chaparro and 39-year-old Jorge Torres were killed on April 24th 1991 in Segovia, in the region of Antioquia, western Colombia. They were sent to the town by Bogota newspaper El Espectador, to report on the aftermath of a massacre that had taken place there two years before, in which 43 people had been killed.
In Colombia, the right to prosecute a homicide has until now ended 20 years after the crime. Though a recent reform has extended this to 30 years, this new law has yet to be implemented.
The AIPA investigations, conducted by their Colombia unit, were presented to the IACHR with the intention of putting pressure on the Colombian state to end impunity for the murders.
The president of the AIPA’s committee against impunity, Juan Francisco Ealy Ortiz, has expressed confidence that with the involvement of the IACHR, they might at last begin the process of achieving justice for the victims and their families.
Ortiz, who is also president of Mexican newspaper El Universal, added that the resolution of these cases would “set an important precedent that no crime goes unpunished in Colombia”.
The AIPA is a non-profit organization dedicated to defending and promoting press freedom and expression in the Americas. Since 1997, it has presented to the IACHR 29 cases of impunity in the cases of murdered journalists across Latin America.