Human Rights Watch claim Colombian army was involved in illegal killings of civiliansComments
A new report has claimed the Colombian army and members of the country’s armed forces have been involved in illegal killings of civilians known as “false positive” killings to boost body counts.
It is also alleged by Human Rights Watch, the report’s authors that top military officials helped in the crimes.
“Yet the army officials in charge at the time of the executions have managed to escape justice and even ascended to the top of the military command, including the current heads of the army and armed forces,” Jose Miguel Vivanco Americas Director of Human Rights Watch told reporters.
More than 3,000 civilians its is claimed were killed but military leaders have denied any responsibility and no charges have been brought against them. The current president was the country’s minister of defence at the time.
“There is not a single investigation or even research against these senior officers. So Human Rights Watch should not come pointing fingers at us without any justification documentation. That is not a way to monitor respect for human rights,” Colombian President Juan Manuel Santos told a gathering of military officials.
The troops, it is alleged lured civilians to remote areas then reported them as rebels killed during the government’s 50-year war with Marxist guerrillas.
HRW say the attorney general’s office is currently investigating killings that took place within more than 180 battalions and other tactical units.