Impunity - Colombia

WHEREAS three-and-a-half years after the killing of Gerardo Bedoya there has been no progress in the investigation to identify the murderers and those behind the slaying, with leads being omitted, evidence being played down and the case being focused, without any evidence, on the murder motive being the possible homosexual conduct of the journalist WHEREAS on March 10, 2000 the detention of Fidias Zeider Ospino was revoked, thus releasing the suspected gunman in the murder of Hernando Rangel Moreno on April 11, 1999 at El Banco, Magdalena province WHEREAS testimony from a new witness about the murder of journalist Carlos Lajúd Catalán provided new clues about those behind the crime WHEREAS even though the Colombian Attorney General’s Office filed charges against the killers of journalist Guzmán Quinteiro Torres, those behind the crime have not been identified WHEREAS Principle 4 of the Declaration of Chapultepec states that “freedom of expression and of the press are severely limited by murder, terrorism, kidnapping, intimidation, the unjust imprisonment of journalists, the destruction of facilities, violence of any kind and impunity for perpetrators; such acts must be investigated promptly and punished harshly” THE GENERAL ASSEMBLY OF THE IAPA RESOLVES to demand the Attorney General’s Office of Colombia and the prosecutors in charge of the case since 1997 review the investigation into the killing of Gerardo Bedoya to determine the reasons why there has been no progress and why evidence has been rejected that could lead to the possibility that those behind the crime could be employees of state entities in collusion with drug traffickers to urge the Attorney General’s Office to review the process by which the suspected killer of Hernando Rangel Moreno was freed and that the investigation continue in order to determine the true culprits to demand the Attorney General’s Office act faster in gathering evidence leading to the capture for those responsible of the murder of Carlos Lajúd Catalán to urge the Attorney General’s Office of Colombia to continue its investigations until those behind the murder of Guzmán Quintero Torres are apprehended to request the Inter-American Human Rights Commission, through documents provided by the IAPA, to pressure Colombian authorities to solve the murders of Gerardo Bedoya, Hernando Rangel Moreno and Carlos Lajud Catalán.