Briefing and Recommendations for the UK: UN Universal Periodic Review on Colombia


Colombia will engage in a third Universal Periodic Review (UPR) process in May 2018. The UK made some important recommendations to Colombia during the first and second review process. These covered issues such as tackling poverty, specifically amongst vulnerable groups, security for human rights defenders (HRDs), addressing impunity, forced displacement, illegal armed groups and human rights issues in the military justice system. All these areas are referred to in this document.

This document is designed to provide the UK with recommendations, drawn from ABColombia and its member organisations, The Gaia Foundation, War on Want, the Colombian Caravana of Lawyers Group, Colombia Solidarity Campaign and the London Mining Network following discussions with our partners in Colombia. We would ask that the UK make these recommendations to the Colombian government during Colombia’s UPR process in May.

The full briefing can be downloaded by clicking on the button below.

The briefing and recommendations address key issues related to:

  • Peace Process
  • Situation of Human Rights Defenders
  • Impunity for Crimes against Human Rights Defenders
  • Enforced Disappearances
  • Extrajudicial Killings
  • Women and Women Human Rights Defenders
  • Business and Human Rights
  • Conflict, Poverty and Inequality
  • Forced Displacement and Land Restitution

The recommendations at a glance:

  1. That the Colombian Government ensures that there are sufficient resources assigned to the Special Unit in the Public Prosecutor’s Office on crimes against Human Rights Defenders; that the Colombian Government ensures that this Special Unit traces the patterns of killings of Human Rights Defenders in order to identify and prosecute not just the perpetrators but also the authors of these crimes.
  2. That Colombia invites the UN Special Rapporteur on the Situation of Human Rights Defenders to Colombia on an official visit.
  3. That Colombia recognises the competence of the UN Committee on Enforced Disappearances to receive and examine communications – from or in favour of victims – as well as from other State Parties.
  4. Ensure that the investigation and prosecution against commanding officers in the Security Forces for ‘false positive’ extrajudicial killings are prioritised and adequately resourced.
  5. To ensure effective implementation of the Special Jurisdiction for Peace (Jurisdicción Especial para la Paz-JEP) specifically in cases of conflict-related sexual violence. By strengthening measures to prevent, sanction and eradicate violence and discrimination against women exacerbated by the armed conflict, including concrete efforts to fulfil the commitments made in the Peace Accord to: investigate, sanction and provide reparation for human rights violations against women who have suffered from conflict related gender-based violence.
  6. Enhance access to justice for victims of gender-based violence in the framework of the ordinary justice system.
  7. That the Colombian Government extends the period of time to implement the Land Restitution Law 1448.
  8. To ensure there are adequate resources for Popular Consultations (Consulta Popular) and Free, Prior, and Informed, Consent (ILO Convention 169) processes, in order that they can promote and strengthens citizen participation and inclusive development. As well as, respecting and implementing the outcomes of the popular consultations that have been held so far, like that in Cajamarca.
  9. Design and develop mechanisms to ensure that communities and stakeholders receive, as early as possible, all relevant information regarding mining and other large-scale projects including impact assessments in order that they can make informed decisions in prior consultation processes and leave open the option that some projects may not be viable.
  10. That the Colombian Government ensures that the ethnic protection plans for indigenous peoples that are at risk of physical and cultural extinction and populations’ of African descent that are extremely vulnerable own development plans are incorporated into the PDETs.
  11. That the Colombian Government fully implements the Agrarian Chapter of the Peace Accord which prioritise access to land and resources for rural women from marginalised and vulnerable groups.

Click on the button below to download the full briefing document.

Read ABColombia’s UPR briefing for Ireland.