IACHR found a violation of the ACHR requirements in relation to the applicants.

Заголовок: IACHR found a violation of the ACHR requirements in relation to the applicants. Сведения: 2020-07-30 04:17:18

Inter-American Court of Human Rights judgment of 20 November 2018 in Villamizar Duran and Others v. Colombia (Series A no. 364).

The applicants were assisted in preparing a complaint to the Inter-American Commission on Human Rights (Washington, USA).

Subsequently, the Inter-American Commission on Human Rights referred the applicant's complaint to the Inter-American Court of Human Rights (San José, Costa Rica). The complaint was then communicated to Colombia.

The case has successfully addressed a complaint of killings (also known as falsos positivos - erroneous accomplishments) committed by members of the Colombian Armed Forces in attacks on civilians in different parts of the country.

The case deals with killings (also known as falsos positivos - erroneous accomplishments) committed by members of the Colombian Armed Forces in attacks on civilians in different parts of the country.


THE CIRCUMSTANCES OF THE CASE


The case concerned the killing in the 1990s of six civilians by members of the Armed Forces of Colombia during the conflict in that country. The Inter-American Court of Human Rights (hereinafter - the Inter-American Court) found that five victims were killed by military personnel as a result of the modus operandi, later known as "erroneous achievements", which were characterized by the killing of civilians, hereinafter referred to as members of illegal armed groups who participated in the conflicts from 1995 to 1997. The killings occurred in three Colombian departments, namely Arauca, Santander and Casanare. The case also refers to the killing of a civilian by an off-duty serviceman in 1992 in the Hato Corozal area.


QUESTIONS OF LAW


The essence of the complaint. Article 4, paragraph 1 (right to life), Article 5, paragraph 1 (right to human treatment), Article 7 (right to personal liberty), Article 11, paragraph 1 (right to honor and dignity), in conjunction with Article 1, paragraph 1 (duty respect and guarantee rights without discrimination) of the American Convention on Human Rights (hereinafter - ACHR).

In a proceeding before the Inter-American Court, the Colombian authorities have acknowledged their international responsibility for certain acts and omissions related to the execution by the military of five civilians.

The Inter-American Court held that the Colombian authorities were responsible for the violation of the victims 'right to life, as well as for the violation of the four victims' right to security and liberty (in relation to their imprisonment and the treatment they were subjected to before execution). The Colombian authorities were also responsible for the violation of the right to honor and dignity of the two victims and their family members (as the authorities made an unsubstantiated claim that the victims were guerrillas killed in an armed clash).

With regard to the killing of a civilian by members of the armed forces who were not on duty, the Inter-American Court found that the Colombian authorities were responsible (ultra vires responsibility of the State) and that the act was a violation of the right to life. According to the Inter-American Court, the victim was killed by a man who could reasonably be expected to carry out these actions on behalf of the state. Also, the Inter-American Court concluded that the Colombian authorities were responsible for the violation of Article 7 of the ACHR, given that the victim's right to personal liberty was violated. In addition, given the fact that the victim died from 14 stab wounds, the Inter-American Court ruled that it was reasonable to assume that the victim experienced suffering prior to death that violated her personal integrity.

On the other hand, with regard to the alleged torture of three victims, the Inter-American Court of Justice noted that there was insufficient evidence that the victims were tortured. The Inter-American Court found that the forensic report indicated that the injuries on the bodies of the victims were likely to have been caused by shots fired to kill the victims on the spot rather than subject them to willful ill-treatment that could cause them long-term suffering.

The essence of the complaint. Article 8 (1) (right to a fair trial), 25 (right to a legal remedy) in conjunction with Article 1, paragraph 1 (duty to respect and guarantee rights without discrimination) ACHR and articles 1, 6 and 8 of the Inter-American Convention on the Prevention and Punishment of Torture for them.

With regard to the rights to judicial guarantees and judicial protection, it was noted that the Colombian authorities admitted in part their responsibility and that there were no contentious issues regarding the violation:

(i) the guarantee by a competent judge established in connection with the fact that the military court investigated and proceeded in the death of five victims;

(ii) Requiring a reasonable time frame for review by the courts of general jurisdiction in the investigation and proceedings in the death of three victims;

(iii) Articles 1 and 8 of the Inter-American Convention to Prevent and Punish Torture, to the Prejudice of the Rights of the Relatives of the Three Victims. The Inter-American Court found that the Colombian authorities were responsible for the violation of the right to judicial guarantees and judicial protection of the relatives of the five victims because they did not act with due diligence in investigating the deaths of the victims.

Regarding the alleged violation of article 6 of the Inter-American Convention to Prevent and Punish Torture, to the Prejudice of the Rights of the Relatives of the Three Victims, the Inter-American Court ruled that the Colombian authorities were responsible for the violation of that article of the Convention, as they did not initiate an investigation into the alleged torture complaints. to the victims.

As regards the alleged breach of the guarantee of a hearing by a competent judge concerning an investigation by the military into the killing of a civilian by a soldier who was not on duty, the Inter-American Court did not examine this complaint, as there was no breach in respect of the investigation and trial of that fact.

In conclusion, the Inter-American Court found, as a direct consequence of the circumstances of the present case, that the victims' relatives experienced suffering that affected their psychological and moral integrity.


COMPENSATION


The Inter-American Court held that this judgment per se was a form of compensation and stated, inter alia, that the Colombian authorities were required to:

(i) continue and conduct the investigation and trial of the case;

(ii) publish this Regulation and an official summary of it;

(iii) publicly admit their responsibility;

(iv) provide psychological and / or psychiatric assistance to relatives of the victims who have requested it;

(v) pay compensation for material and non-pecuniary damage, as well as compensation for court costs and expenses.

 

 

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