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Resolution adopted unanimously by the IPU Governing Council at its 194th session
(Geneva, 20 March 2014)

The Governing Council of the Inter-Parliamentary Union,

Referring to the case of the six abovementioned members of the Unión Patriótica (Patriotic Union) who were murdered between 1986 and 1994, and to the resolution it adopted at its 192nd session (March 2013),

Taking into consideration the communication from the Prosecutor’s Office, dated 19 February 2014,

Recalling the following information on file:

  • None of the murderers of five of the six congressmen have been held to account;

  • The Inter-American Court of Human Rights, in its binding ruling of 26 May 2010 in the case of Mr. Cepeda, concluded that the Colombian State bore responsibility for his murder and ordered it to conduct an effective investigation so as to establish the identity of the instigators and the full scale of collaboration between State agents and paramilitary forces in carrying out the crime;

  • A general petition submitted to the Inter-American Commission on Human Rights in 1997 regarding the persecution of the Patriotic Union and offences committed, directly or indirectly, against its members, including all the aforementioned parliamentarians except Mr. Cepeda, is still pending;

  • Since 2008, the Procuraduría has given special attention to the case of Mr. Jaramillo, and the Prosecutor’s Office has assembled a special team focusing on violations committed against members of the Patriotic Union and reactivated investigations into the assassinations of Mr. Jiménez, Mr. Posada, Mr. Valencia, Mr. Cepeda and Mr. Jaramillo;

  • On 17 May 2011, the Prosecutor’s Office formally accused Mr. José Miguel Narváez, former Assistant Director of the Administrative Department of Security, of involvement in Mr. Cepeda’s assassination, which has been declared a crime against humanity, and ordered that he be remanded in custody; Mr. Narváez is currently being held and prosecuted in a number of cases in connection with his alleged collaboration with paramilitary groups;

  • Investigations with respect to the other murder cases are ongoing; in the case of Mr. Posada, a suspect, Mr. Baquero Agudelo, accepted a plea bargain and his case was sent to court for sentencing along with a request from the Prosecutor's Office that the relevant available documents be examined with a view to identifying other alleged culprits; in the case of Mr. Jaramillo, according to the Prosecutor's Office, Mr. Carlos Arturo Lozano Guillén, Director of the daily Voz, and Mr. Ricardo Pérez González were heard on 20 May 2011 as part of the investigation and the legal status of Mr. Alberto Romero, former chief of the Administrative Department of Security, who had previously come under investigation, still had to be determined and further evidence taken,
Recalling also that the Committee’s President, Senator Juan Pablo Letelier (then Committee Vice-President), met with the relevant Colombian authorities and the source during his visit to Colombia on 20 and 21 March 2013; on that occasion the current Chief Prosecutor of Colombia stated that he had developed a new methodology focusing on the most serious crimes and reconstructing the context in which they took place; he had identified the case of persecution of Patriotic Union members as a priority and is trying to bring together the various legal proceedings being conducted across Colombia,

Considering the following new information provided by the Prosecutor’s Office in its communication of 19 February 2014:

  • The Chief Prosecutor of Colombia, in implementing its new methodology, has created nine thematic working groups, one of which focuses solely on crimes against members of the Unión Patriótica;

  • With regard to the investigation into Mr. Cepeda’s murder, Mr. Narváez will remain in pretrial detention during the case until his legal status is resolved; on 6 August 2013 a plea bargain/guilty plea was reached and pronounced with respect to Mr. Jesús Emiro Pereira for his role in this murder;

  • In November 2013, as the latest step in the investigation regarding Mr. Posada’s murder, which was at a confidential stage, the statements of two individuals were taken,
  1. Thanks the Prosecutor’s Office for the latest information provided;

  2. Is pleased that the Prosecutor’s Office continues to devote special attention to promoting justice in the case of the persecution of members of the Patriotic Union, exemplified in one of its worst forms by the murder of six of its MPs; 

  3. Welcomes the recent progress made in establishing accountability for Mr. Cepeda’s murder; wishes to receive a copy of the ruling regarding Mr. Jesús Emiro Pereira and information on whether his case has shed further light on the extent of State responsibility for the crime and on the identity of those involved; trusts that proceedings against Mr. Narváez are advancing speedily and wishes to be kept informed in this regard;

  4. Reiterates its wish to know whether the murders of the Patriotic Union congressmen other than Mr. Cepeda have also been declared crimes against humanity; trusts that by now the Prosecutor’s Office has decided whether or not to bring charges against Mr. Romero in the case of Mr. Jaramillo’s murder; wishes to know what decision has been taken in this regard; wishes to know also whether the recent statements in the case of Mr. Posada have advanced the investigation, and whether Mr. Baquero Agudelo has meanwhile been sentenced and, if so, is serving his sentence and to receive a copy of the ruling;

  5. Trusts that the Inter-American Commission on Human Rights is steadily advancing in its consideration of the Patriotic Union case; wishes to ascertain the stage reached in its examination and whether a time line exists for its completion;

  6. Considers that a follow-up visit to Colombia by a Committee delegation would help to further its understanding of the current state of the pursuit of justice in this case and of how pending issues are being addressed; requests the Secretary General, therefore, to make the necessary arrangements for this purpose;

  7. Requests the Secretary General to convey this resolution to the competent Colombian authorities, the source and any third party likely to be in a position to supply relevant information; also requests the Secretary General to forward the resolution to the Inter-American Commission on Human Rights and to arrange a meeting between the Commission and the Committee President;

  8. Requests the Committee to continue examining this case and to report back to it in due course.

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