A report from the United Nations’ (U.N.) Human Right’s Committee applauds Colombia’s legislative initiatives in the fight against gender violence but criticizes the country’s lack of progress with the demobilization of illegal armed groups, labelling impunity as “the main problem” which the Andean nation currently faces.
Speaking on behalf of the committee, Fabian Salvioli said at a press conference that “one of the worst practices highlighted during the period of study were the so-called ‘false positives,’ which should be investigated thoroughly and the offenders prosecuted.”
The report, which shows the conclusions of a Human Rights Committee meeting in Geneva on July 12, criticized the lack of investigations into serious human rights violations and attacks on human rights’ activists, and called for Colombia to adopt appropriate measures to meet the Committee’s recommendations.
The document urged the Colombian government to work on compensation, restitution and rehabilitation and to pay particular attention to gender issues, as well as any victims who are minors, Afro-Colombian or indigenous, who are the “least protected by law” according to the report.
Savioli also brought attention to the alleged mental health problems of many Colombians, saying “Resources should be made available specifically to provide psycho-social care and rehabilitation.”
The report also said the extradition of paramilitary leaders to the U.S. hampered investigations because it interferes with the course of justice.
According to Savioli, extraditions impede the right to justice and reparation and the discovery of truth, as well as contravening Colombia’s responsibility to investigate, prosecute and punish perpetrators of humans rights violations.
The committee also offered positive criticism, saying it welcomed Colombia’s cooperation with the U.N.’s independent experts, special representatives, work groups and its High Commissioner for Human Rights.