We Reject Terrorism by Intimidation and Threats to Members of Human Rights Organizations in Ecuador
In the face of terrorist threats, we express our indignation and declare our solidarity
with citizens working for human rights in Ecuador who have recently received an email threat from a self-described political and military organization that identifies itself as the "White Legion."
that it defends the values of the capitalist system, this group has accused a number of citizens of being "delinquents", "guerrillas" and "communists". This organization, hiding behind an
email address belonging to a fictitious person, has threatened that if these citizens do not "reform" and "integrate into society," "their days will be numbered."
The victims of these
threats have been working for years defending civil and political as well as economic, social, and cultural rights. In the past few months, they have participated in various events and campaigns critical of Plan
Columbia, searching for alternative solutions to the critical situation facing the border populations in Ecuador.
These people have exercised their right to freedom of expression and to dissent. They have backed
their positions with arguments based on hard evidence. More importantly, their statements have been made publicly, in open debates and forums.
Taking the opposite approach, the so-called "White Legion" has
resorted to threats, intimidation and anonymity to express their ideas and achieve their goals.
We are extremely concerned. These threats have provoked a profound reflection on their implications for a democratic
society, one which values peace and human life as its most precious assets.
The intolerance and violence that have become an everyday reality in Colombia, operate through anonymous threats and intimidation by
paramilitary groups. These groups have little interest in preserving the peace in Colombia. Anyone who publicly disagrees with these groups is subjected to death threats. Those who ignore the threats, and continue to
speak out, are disappeared and assassinated. In Colombia, this form of violence began with threats against human rights groups and today the practice has extended to judges, the press and society in general.
undersigned organizations hope this will never happen in Ecuador. We strenuously reject these forms of violence. We demand that the Government and that the competent authorities such as the National Prosecutor
(Fiscalía) the national Ombudsman, (Defensoría del Pueblo), the Armed Forces and the national Police carry out investigations to identify the perpetrators and the interests behind them. Moreover, we demand that the
Government take responsibility for the safety of the individuals that have been threatened.
Finally, we call on international organizations such as the United Nations System, the Inter-American System, Amnesty
International and the Red Cross to intervene for the protection of our threatened colleagues.
1. PLATAFORMA INTERAMERICANA DE DERECHOS HUMANOS, DESARROLLO Y DEMOCRACIA- CAPITULO ECUADOR
2. CENTRO DE DERECHOS ECONOMICOS Y SOCIALES (CDES)
3. FUNDACIÓN MARIANA DE JESÚS
4. FUNDACIÓN JUSTICIA Y PAZ
5. FUNDACIÓN GRUPO DE LOS 6
6. FUNDACIÓN REGIONAL DE ASESORIA EN DERECHOS HUMANOS (INHRED)
7. JUBILEO 2000-ECUADOR
8. ACCION ECOLÓGICA
9. COORDINADORA POLÍTICA DE MUJERES
If you wish to adhere to this communiqué, please add your
name or the name of your organization and sent it to
PRESIDENCIA DE LA REPUBLICA
Dr. Gustavo Noboa Bejarano
FAX (593-2) 580-735
MINISTERIO DE GOBIERNO,
Dr. Juan Manríque Martínez
FAX (593-2) 580-067
MINISTERIO DE DEFENSA
Alm. Hugo Unda
FAX (593 2) 580-431
DEFENSORIA DEL PUEBLO
Dr. Carlos Mueckay Arcos
FAX (593 2) 562-200
Dra. Mariana Yépez
FAX (593 2) 559-447
ALTA COMISIONADA DE LAS NACIONES UNIDAS
Alta Comisionada de Derechos Humanos, ONU
COMISION INTERAMERICANA DE DERECHOS HUMANOS
Jorge E. Taiana