Kinori, via wikimedia commons
Originally appeared in Human Rights Brief
The RFK Center for Human rights joined other organizations in sounding an alarm regarding Colombian legislation that could seriously impede the work of human rights advocates. Two bills would expand the nation’s Military Court’s jurisdiction by mandating that any case involving a member of the armed forces or police including “infractions” of international humanitarian law to be tried in military court. The RFK Center cautions that the Military Court, though appropriate in some instances, may be a more difficult system to prosecute perpetrators of human rights violations as an arm of the executive branch of the Colombian government. Instead, it argues, the civilian courts, ostensibly with more civilian oversight, is the appropriate venue for these cases.
To learn more about this topic:
- Colombian Senate Bill-85, 2013 [En Espanol]
- Previous Ruling from the Constitutional Court of Colombia denying similar legislation
- Background on the legislative process in Colombia
- Open Letter Open letter by Special Procedures mandate-holders of the United Nations Human Rights Council to the Government and the Congress of the Republic of Colombia