Military Recruitment and Conscientious objection in Colombia

en
es

Report to the Human Rights Committee, 97th Session

London, August 2009

Summary


Colombia does not
recognise the right to conscientious objection. Conscientious
objectors live with the permanent risk of recruitment by the Armed
Forces of Colombia, in one of the frequent batidas,
checkpoints set up by the military on busy streets or places, to
check the papers of young people at recruitment age. In addition,
they face further violations of their human rights.

This report outlines
the various human rights violations experienced by young people at
recruitment age, and especially by conscientious objectors. War
Resisters' International's main concerns are:


  • The common
    recruitment practice of batidas, and the subsequent forced
    recruitment of young people into the Armed Forces, is a violation of
    Article 9 of the International Covenant on Civil and Political
    Rights. The Working Group on Arbitrary Detention stated in its
    Opinion No 8/2008 on three cases of recruitment in Colombia (para
    22): “Nor is there any legal basis or juridical support for the
    practice of 'batidas', 'redadas' or 'levas' for the purpose of
    detaining young men who cannot produce documentation of their
    military situation on the streets and in public places
    1.
    Every year, thousands of young men are subjected to this form of
    illegal recruitment.

  • In not providing
    for conscientious objection, Colombia violates Article 18 of the
    International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights2.
  • In addition,
    conscientious objectors are at permanent risk of being recruited
    during a 'batida', which then constitutes a violation of Article 9
    of the Covenant3.


  • Furthermore,
    because conscientious objectors do not have a so-called libreta
    militar
    , they face discrimination: they cannot graduate from
    university, nor can they seek public employment. In practice, they
    are unable to enter into any formal working relationship. They are
    also not able to stand for public office. This is a violation of
    Article 26 of the Covenant, and in the case of not being able to
    stand for public office, a violation of Article 25.

  • In total, the
    risks and discrimination conscientious objectors face can amount to
    what the European Court of Human
    Rights has called “civil death”4,
    which amounts to inhuman or degrading treatment in violation of
    Article 7 of the Covenant.

  • War Resisters'
    International is especially concerned about death threats from
    paramilitary groups against conscientious objection activists, and
    the failure of the Colombian authorities to prevent the re-emergence
    of paramilitary organisations such as the Aguilas Negras.


1. Introduction

Colombia
is a country with a wide range of human rights problems, many of them
the result of more than 50 years of armed conflict. This report,
produced by War Resisters' International, does not aim to give a
comprehensive overview on human rights in Colombia, but focuses on
one particular aspect: human rights in relation to recruitment for
the Armed Forces (regular and irregular), and the right to object to
being recruited (conscientious objection to military service). This
is for two reasons:


  1. War
    Resisters' International is an international network committed to
    nonviolent action against war, and for the removal of all causes of
    war. We believe that conscientious objection to military service,
    the refusal to take part in the armed conflict in Colombia on any
    side, is one important contribution to ending this decades old
    conflict. However, the human rights of conscientious objectors to
    military service in Colombia are routinely violated.

  2. Often,
    recruitment for the Armed Forces is seen as legitimate, as normal –
    unless this recruitment involves the recruitment of minors, of
    children. However, the facts highlighted in this report show that
    the practice of recruitment in Colombia contributes to the violation
    of the human rights of those recruited not only in the cases of
    conscientious objectors to military service. In fact, the widespread
    practice of batidas to recruit for the Armed Forces leads to
    the violation of human rights of tens of thousands of young men
    every year.

The
issue of conscientious objection to military service in Colombia has
come up before several UN bodies before. In 2004, the Human Rights
Committee recommended that “[t]he State party should guarantee
that conscientious objectors are able to opt for alternative service
whose duration would not have punitive effects (arts. 18 and 26)
5.

During
the Universal Periodic Review of Colombia in December 2008, Slovenia
put forward a recommendation that Colombia recognises the right to
conscientious objection in law and practice, and ensures that
recruitment methods allow this6.
However, Colombia did not accept this recommendation. The Colombian
delegation pointed out that “[t]he Colombian Constitution and
the legal framework establish that all citizens have the obligation
to enrol in the military service when the circumstances so require to
defend the National sovereignty and the public institutions and to
provide security conditions for all citizens. This obligation has
been upheld on several occasions by the jurisprudence of the
Constitutional Court
7.

In
May 2009, Gina
Cabarcas
,
Antonio
Barreto and

Daniél
Bonilla

submitted a claim of unconstitutionality on article 27 of law 48/1993
to the Constitutional Court of Colombia, in which they argue that not
to provide for the right to conscientious objection is a violation of
the Colombian constitution8.
Interestingly, this view has now been supported by the Procuraduria
General de la Nacion

(Attorney General's Office) in a submission to the Court9.
At present, the case is still pending.



2. Conscription and military service in Colombia

2.1 Legal basis

Colombia maintains a
conscription system. Article 216 of the 1991 Constitution provides
for compulsory military service. It states: "All Colombian
citizens are obliged to take up arms when there is a public need for
this in order to defend national independence and the public
institutions. The law will determine the conditions which at all
times qualify an individual for exemption from military service and
the benefits for service in them.
"10
Compulsory military service is regulated by Law No. 4811
and Presidential Decree No. 204812,
both passed in 1993.

According to article 10
of Law 48/1993, “all Colombian men are obliged to resolve their
military situation at the date when they reach adulthood, with the
exception for undergraduate students, who
resolve
their military status upon completion of studies for the BA degree.
The military obligations of Colombians end on the day they reach the
age of 50.
” For women military service is voluntary. Military
service for women is only obligatory “when the situation in the
country demands it, and the National Government declares this.
13

According to article
11, military service lasts between 12 and 24 months. Article 13
specifies that the military service of regular conscripts lasts 18-24
months, while for university
graduates, who, after their initial training, can be
posted to serve for the “general welfare” of the community,
especially in relation to environment and ecology, the service lasts
12 months. The service of rural
soldiers (soldados campesinos), who are supposed to serve in the
geographical area where they live, lasts 12-18 months.



2.2 The recruitment process

Law 48/1993 and Decree
2048/1993 describe the recruitment procedure. Article 14 describes
the process of registration to resolve the military situation. This
is then followed by several medical examinations, which determine
whether a person is fit (and therefore liable) for military service
or not (articles 15-17). The enlistment itself is dealt with in
article 20. It normally happens at a mass recruitment rally, on dates
announced by the recruitment authorities. Those who for some reason
do not have to serve will have to pay a “compensation quota”,
according to article 21. Articles 27 to 29 deal with reasons for
exemption from military service or postponement of service.

According to article 41
and 42, failure to register for military service, to appear for
medical examination, for classification, or for recruitment can be
punished with a fine. Those who fail to show up at a recruitment
rally (according to article 20) will be classified as remisos.
Once someone is declared remiso, he will have to resolve
his military situation by performing military service
(article 43), However, if he has reasons for exemption, he can also
be exempted by the Junta para Remisos (article 43)14.

According to article 50
(a) of decree 2048/1993, the military can carry out patrols to find
remisos. However, this does not include other persons who have
not resolved their military situation.

According to several
reports, recruitment by the Armed Forces has increased in recent
years. In February 2008, the largest ever recruitment campaign took
place, with a recruitment of 30,606 new conscripts in all of
Colombia. The target for 2008 was to recruit a total of 113,512 new
recruits15.

In April 2009, the
Colombian army was comprised of 103,616 regular conscripts (including
university
graduates), 25,202 rural
soldiers (soldados campesinos), and 85,056 professional
soldiers16.


2.3 Recruitment practice

The recruitment
practice differs from what is outlined in the law. Batidas
the practice of rounding up groups of young people in public places,
e.g. at bus stations, to check if they have resolved their military
situation according to the law, and then to bring all those who
cannot show the relevant papers to the military barracks for
incorporation into the Armed Forces –
are widespread, though illegal.

The Armed Forces
themselves are aware that this practice is improper. In an interview
with a Medellin based newspaper, Coronel Bohórquez of the IV Brigade
in Medellin replied to the question of what to do in the case of a
batida: “The truth is that 'redadas', as we call them,
should not happen. It is fine that we verify the documents and call
people before the military district, that is what we should be aiming
for. But the fact that they are being detained is improper
17.



Examples:


  • On 5 August 2009, more than 200 young people were recruited on the streets of
    Medellin, according to information provided by Red Juvenil
    de Medellin
    . Members of Red Juvenil observed the military
    checking young people's papers in the Calle primera de mayo, near
    the hotel Nutibara. Those who could not show the libreta militar
    were ordered to board a truck standing there. The batida was
    carried out from 11am to 3pm by the Distrito Militar 24.
    According to other young people who passed by, at the same time
    military personnel at the metro station at the Terminal de
    Transporte were recruiting there, as well as in other parts of the
    city which were not named18.

  • On 4 August 2009,
    batidas took place in the town of Barrancabermeja19.

  • Also on 4 August
    2009, a member of Accion Colectiva de Objetores y Objetoras de
    Conciencia Bogota
    (ACOOC) witnessed a batida in Bogota at
    a commercial centre often frequented by young people. He witnessed
    at least 40 young people on the truck parked at a street corner, and
    attempted to talk to the military. He also attempted to talk to the
    young people on the truck, but was not allowed to do so. After he
    had talked to three different military officials, the military seems
    to have decided to end the batida, as this was an unwelcome
    intervention20.

  • In
    Bogota on 2 August 2009 various military personnel were stationed at
    the corner of Carrera décima with calle 10 and at the entrance to
    the Transmilenio station Jiménez. There they asked young men for
    their papers to verify if they had a libreta
    militar
    ,
    and some who did not have it were on two trucks, one with the number
    UZB 315 and the other one with the number CND 023. We don't have
    information which military district was carrying out this correría.
    Andrés21,
    a young person
    who lives in the locality of Ciudad Bolívar, an area classified as
    belonging to socio-economic stratification level 1 (the lowest
    level) and who is at his fifth year in university, was caught in a
    batida
    by the military district on 2 August on his way to work. He was then
    transferred to the battalion where he was detained for the whole
    night and was given a summons for the recruitment rally; he then
    again went to work and on the following Saturday was again detained
    in a batida
    in the commercial centre “el Tunal”, but this time by the
    Military District No 52 – Escuela
    de Artillería
    ,
    headed by commander Salinas. At the moment he is in the process of
    documenting his reasons for exemption as he lives in a de-facto
    marriage and has a daughter. He hopes that the military respects his
    rights22.

  • On 7 March 2009,
    young people from Puerto Rico in Caquetá were recruited during a
    batida. A group of young men was detained at a military
    checkpoint at the bridge of Guayas, to check their identity card and
    the libreta militar. “The latter we did not have, and
    the former they seized because, according to them, they were setting
    our military status as recruits. Faced with this, we argued our
    conscientious objection to belonging to an army, that we do not want
    to take up arms and much less have to kill someone in fulfilment of
    the obligation to be 'heroes of the fatherland'. Repeatedly we
    reiterated our legal right for exemption from military service. The
    second sergeant in charge of the checkpoint did not listed to our
    arguments, and with insults they forced us onto the truck, which
    constituted a deprivation of liberty and arbitrary detention. The
    case of Jimi Laverde, who was detained on Saturday, 7 March, and who
    did not receive back his identity card is a worrying outcome
    23.

  • WRI's Colombian
    affiliate Red Juvenil reported on a round of arbitrary
    recruitment in Medellin in October and November 2008. Batidas,
    the recruitment of young people on streets or in public places if
    they cannot show the right military papers, had been observed in
    various places in Medellin, e.g. at the main transport terminal in
    the north of Medellin, in several metro stations, at the Medellin
    football stadium and in several poorer neighbourhoods of the city
    (Comunas 2, 5, 6, 13). In several cases, the military kept people's
    identity cards and demanded that they reclaim them back from the
    military barracks.

    Red
    Juvenil
    also reported on similar recruitment actions in several
    parts of Antioquia, especially in Yarumal, Amalfi, Oriente
    Antioqueno, Urrao, Canas Gordas, Dabeiba and Apartado24.

  • In May 2008, War
    Resisters' International observed batidas in Bogota during a
    visit of one of our Staff members to Colombia. On one day, two
    trucks were parked close to the office of Mennonite peace and human
    rights organisation Justapaz, and soldiers checked the papers
    of young people. Several young people were then ordered onto the
    trucks. On another day, soldiers entered local buses at a busy place
    close to where a recruitment rally was being held, and checked the
    papers of young people. Those without proper documentation were
    ordered off the bus, and brought to the recruitment rally25.

  • Diego Yesid
    Bosa Rico
    was recruited in a batida on 23 February 2008,
    and initially brought to the Battalion Simon Bolivar in Tunja, about
    three hours from Bogota. He was then transferred to the Special
    Energy and Road Battalion No 6 'Jose Maria Carbonell', where he is
    supposed to serve his military service as a regular soldier. Once
    recruited, Diego Yesid Bosa Rico maintained his position that he
    does not want to be part of any military, based on his conscientious
    objection and his belief in nonviolence.

    After
    the recruitment of Diego Yesid Bosa Rico in the batida, his
    mother, Alba Luz Rico, petitioned the National Recruitment
    Directorate, asking for the release of her son from military service
    on several grounds, including his right to conscientious objection
    and the illegal recruitment procedure. The military turned down the
    petition, stating that the recruitment was legal and that there are
    no reasons for exemption. The military even claims that Diego Yesid
    Bosa Rico signed documents stating that none of the reasons for
    exemption mentioned in article 28 of the law 48 of 1993 apply to him.
    However, Diego Yesid Bosa Rico in fact refused to sign any papers,
    although he was under pressure to do so.


    On
    23 March 2008, Diego Yesid Bosa Rico refused to take a rifle. He also
    noted, e.g. from the response to the petition of his mother, that
    documents he refused to sign appeared with his signature. In his
    response to this, he decided to go on hunger strike26.


    Diego
    Yesid Bosa Rico was released several months later, after
    interventions from Accion Colectiva de Objetores y
    Objetoras de Conciencia Bogota
    (ACOOC), War Resisters'
    International
    , and other organisations27.


  • On 3 February
    2008, soldiers carried out a batida in the town of
    Barrancabermeja. A witness reported that soldiers checked the papers
    of young people in town. The witness also reported that soldiers
    beat up a young man who tried to escape from the truck that was used
    to detain the young people, and to bring them to the barracks28.
  • In the early weeks
    of 2008, Colombia experienced a wave of batidas in order to
    recruit draft evaders or anyone without the appropriate military
    papers to the military. While this is the common form of recruitment
    in Colombia, there are indications that the extent to which batidas
    were used in the province of Antioquia was unusual.


  • The
    Colombian WRI affiliate Red Juvenil de Medellin (Youth Network
    of Medellin) reported several batidas in January and February.
    An eye witness reported:

    "On
    5 January at 5.30pm a squadron of the fourth brigade was present in
    the neighbourhood of Raizal, at the corner of calle 77 and calle 31.


    They
    began to stop motorbikes, bicycles, and any young man who happened to
    be walking on the street ... they did not arrive as they did in the
    past on lorries, and taking men off buses, but this time they arrived
    on foot, without calling attention to themselves ... they went in
    small groups, walking through the streets of the neighbourhood. They
    then put the young people on the sandy ground, youths between 16 and
    20 years of age who they said had to resolve their military
    situation. [...]
    "29


  • Diego Alexander
    Pulgarin
    was recruited on 5 January 2008 in the northern bus
    terminal of Medellin by the Batallón de Infantería No. 10 Atanasio
    Girardot. Afterwards he was transferred to the Batallón Juan del
    Corral in the Municipio de Rionegro (Antioquia), a battalion that
    belongs to the same Military District No 10. In this battalion he
    was incorporated into the army as soldado campesino (rural
    soldier). He declared himself conscientious objector immediately
    from the moment of his recruitment, and refused all orders. He was
    released several months later, after interventions by Red Juvenil
    de Medellin
    , War Resisters' International, and several
    other organisations30.

These examples are only
a few snapshots, which are certainly only the tip of the iceberg. The
practice of batidas is so widespread that it has to be seen as
the main, or certainly a very important, recruitment method of the
Colombian Armed Forces.

War Resisters'
International has presented three cases of recruitment to the Working
Group on Arbitrary Detention. In its opinion on these three cases,
the Working Group said that “The Working Group considers that
although law 48 of 1993 with which recruitment and mobilisation are
regulated establishes in its article 42 sanctions for those who
ignore registration, the drawing of lots, or the call-up, and
generally for those who deliberately when summoned to register for
military service do not present themselves, those sanctions are
exclusively of pecuniary character or a fine. Under no circumstances
do they authorise arrest, detention or the incorporation into the
Armed Forces against the expressly declared will.
” And: “Nor
is there any legal basis or juridical support for the practice of
batidas, redadas or
levas for the purpose of detaining young men who cannot produce
documentation of their military situation on streets and in public
places.

Consequently, the
Working Group came to the conclusion that “The deprivation of
liberty, of which Messrs Estrada Marín, Giraldo Hincapié and
Gonzáles Duque were victims, was arbitrary, being in contravention
of article 9 of the International Covenant on Civil and Political
Rights
31.

More
generally, the UN Working
Group on Arbitrary Detention

expressed its concerns about the practice of batidas
following its visit to Colombia in October 2008:


On
occasions the military relies on detention orders for a few persons
but detain many more. One variant are the
levas,
the massive detention of young people with the purpose of verifying
their military status. Some that are considered having ignored
registration to call-up or to military service are driven to the
barracks for their forced recruitment. The Vice-Minister of Defence
informed us that every young men is obliged to carry his
libreta
militar or the document that proves the postponement of his
military service, because military service is not only a right, but a
duty for a citizen. Generally it is not the army but the armed groups
on the margin of the law that recruit minors into their ranks by
force. The Working Group considered claims of conscientious objectors
who complained that their objections had not been taken into account.
The Working Group considered that the non-recognition of the right to
conscientious objection stands in contradiction to the development of
international law and human rights
32.




3. Conscientious objection to military service

Article
18 of the Colombian constitution guarantees freedom of conscience. It
states: “Freedom of conscience is guaranteed. No one will be
importuned on account of his/her convictions or beliefs or compelled
to reveal them or obliged to act against his/her conscience
33.
However, this clashes with article 216 of the constitution, which
requires all Colombian males to perform military service.

Article
93 of the Colombian Constitution introduces ratified international
human rights standards into Colombian law. Article 93 says:



International
treaties and agreements ratified by the Congress that recognise human
rights and that prohibit their limitation in states of emergency have
priority domestically.



The
rights and duties mentioned in this Charter will be interpreted in
accordance with international treaties on human rights ratified by
Colombia.
34


This
creates what is called a “constitutional block” – a situation
where two provisions of the constitution conflict with each other.


The
Constitutional Court of Colombia has dealt with the question of the
right to conscientious objection to military service in three
sentences in the 1990s.


In
its decision T-409/92 the Court concluded:



The
guarantee of freedom of conscience does not necessarily include the
positive consecration of conscientious objection to military service.
This concept, which in other systems allows the individual to refuse
to comply with an obligation such as the one mentioned when the
corresponding activity involves the realisation of behaviour that
compete
s
with his intimate convictions, has not been accepted by the Colombian
constitution as an exonerating recourse to the indicated
obligation.
35


Two
years later, in its decision C-511-94 the court came to a similar
conclusion:


Neither
is the challenged norm a violation because of the infringement on
freedom of conscience, consecrated in article 18 of the charter. This
body has had the opportunity to indicate that in our system the
concept of 'conscientious objection' does not exist in relation to
military service, because the proper jurisdiction of the demands of
military service does not allow citizens not to attend to this
essential duty, which base can be found not only in the stipulation
of the law, but precisely in the consciousness of the social
compromise.
36


However,
this decision already included an important minority opinion.
Magistrados Eduardo Cifuentes Muñoz, Carlos Gaviria Díaz y
Alejandro Martínez Caballero pointed out that to grant exemption
from military service to conscientious objectors can be based on
article 216 of the Constitution, which delegates it to a law to
regulate military service, and on article 18. In conclusion, they
wrote:


Our
difference with the decision of the Court is that they consider that
the legislator has the discretion whether or not to enable
conscientious objection, while we, for reasons pointed out above,
consider it to be a duty of the legislator to have done so. But in
any case, the debate in Colombian society about this issue remains
open.

One
year later, the Court again dealt with the question of conscientious
objection to military service. In its decision T-363/95 the Court
wrote:


Effectively,
the military service is not
per
se something that implies violence, causing harm to others,
blind use of force or violation of fundamental rights. It is an
abstract duty, the concrete contents are subject to the Constitution
and the law.


(...)


The
Court emphatically rejects the claims of the claimants, because
admitting their viability in light of the Constitution would
enthrone the wishes of each and everyone as a rule and measure for
complying with a duty, which by its very nature is imposed regardless
of the wishes and desires of those who comply with it.”



And
it is so that the duties, which are established as a counterpart to
the rights, while being reasonable and not neglecting the legal
order, are necessary without room for preferences nor discriminations
and do not violate freedom of conscience, nor any other freedom
37

As
Colombian law does not recognise the right to conscientious objection
to military service, conscientious objectors are at risk of being
recruited or arrested. In recent years, War Resisters' International
has dealt with several cases:



  • Gustavo Monroy declared himself a conscientious objector in 2005. On 8 August 2005,
    he was detained by the military with the aim to recruit him. He
    managed to leave military custody on 9 August 2005, after 37 hours
    of captivity, insults, psychological maltreatment and death threats
    by First Corporal Tellez38.
    On 25 and 26 April 2006, he reported at the barracks at Saravena
    Arauca, accompanied by several activists and his lawyer, to settle a
    disciplinary case following his conscientious objection. He and his
    accompaniers were told to be at the barracks at 8am, but once there,
    were not allowed to enter, and told to return at 2pm. However, only
    Gustavo and his lawyer H.V. Greisy were allowed to enter,
    accompanied by a soldier. Once inside, the military put a lot of
    pressure on Gustavo Monroy, and avoided any formal taking of notes,
    claiming that the computer did not work. At 6pm, Gustavo was told
    that the procedure could not be finished on that day, and he was
    ordered to present himself again on the next day at 8am. However, in
    consultation with his lawyer and supporters, Gustavo decided not to
    follow this order, and did not present himself39.

  • Cristian Camilo Henao Suazo
    was recruited on 7 October 2008, and declared himself a
    conscientious objector. Red
    Juvenil de Medellin
    ,
    an organisation affiliated to WRI, received his declaration on 15
    January 2009. Cristian Camilo Henao Suaza presented an application
    for discharge to protect his fundamental rights, especially the
    right to conscientious objection, on 25 April 2009. In its reply the
    battalion did not refer to the right to conscientious objection, but
    only referred to law 48/1993 on military recruitment. At the moment
    he is detained at the Batallón Pedro Justo Barria del Ejercito
    Nacional de Colombia in Medellin40.

  • Yeferson Sneider Hernandez Mazo was immediately recruited with pressure
    from soldiers during a batida at the Terminal de transporte
    del norte of the city of Medellin on 14 October 2008, and was
    transferred to the Batallón del Pedro Nel Ospina, where he was made
    to sign several documents without being allowed to read them. He was
    then finally transferred to the Batallón De Calibio in Puero
    Berrio, where he started to serve his military service.

    Yeferson
    Sneider Hernandez Mazo declared himself a conscientious objector to
    military service based
    on
    his personal convictions41.


  • Alvaro
    Alfonso Pena Leguizamo42

    had to present himself to the recruitment department of Bogota on 12
    February 2008. Pena had previously declared himself a conscientious
    objector, and had communicated this to the recruitment department.
    Although he had declared himself a conscientious objector, the
    Colombian military maintained in its response to Pena's petition
    that there is no right to conscientious objection in Colombia, and
    that Pena would need to present himself on 12 February in order to
    resolve his military situation.

    On
    that day, Alvaro Pena presented himself. The Bogota CO group reported
    on the events: "Álvaro
    Peña, colombian conscientious objector, was today February 12th at 9
    am in the Villa de los Alpes´ Coliseum, to resolve his military
    situation. During the whole day, as part of millions of young men
    summoned by the military forces, Álvaro, tried to explain his case
    as a conscientious objector to the Major Dueñas, who was in charge
    of incorporation. Alvaró was rejected several times, and never
    listened to.


    Finally,
    Álvaro was taken with 200 other young men, who had not resolved
    their military situation, into a closed room, where they remained
    until 9:30 p.m. when they were told that they must be there tomorrow
    again at 7:00 a.m.
    "


    On
    the next day, Pena again presented himself. After several hours, the
    military postponed his service, and ordered him to return on 20 May
    to “"resolve his military situation”43.



    On
    20 May 2008, Alvaro Pena again presented himself. His case had turned
    more complicated, as the military had meanwhile declared him a
    'remiso' (draft evader), based on the fact that his name was in the
    list of those who did not present themselves in February 2008. Only
    that in Alvaro Pena's case he had been asked by the military to sign
    his name into this book, so that his entry also includes his
    signature - a clear proof that he must have been there in February.


    While
    Alvaro Pena was again not recruited on 20 May, he again spent a full
    day in the military, and was only allowed to leave at the end of the
    day, this time without having to sign anything, which also means he
    does not have any proof that he presented himself. He was asked to
    present himself to the Junta
    de remisos

    on 4 June, to sort out his status of remiso
    - but on that day again it was not possible to clear Alvaro Pena of
    this status. He then decided to leave and to pursue the matter in a
    different way44.


  • On the morning of 5 May 2007, Frank
    Yair Estrada Marin

    was taken by soldiers from the Batallon Pedro Justo Berrio to the
    battalion, under the pretext that they needed to perform a medical
    examination to verify his ability to perform military service.
    However, because Frank Yair Estrada Marin did not have a military
    card (libreta
    militar
    ),
    he was immediately recruited, under protest. Frank Yair Estrada
    Marin declared that he did not support any of the armed groups in
    Colombia, because he is a conscientious objector. However, he was
    forced to take part in basic military training45.
    War Resisters' International presented the case of Frank Yair
    Estrada Marin to the Working Group on Arbitrary Detention (see
    Opinion No 8/2008).

  • Carlos Andrés Giraldo Hincapié
    was recruited by force on 4 August 2006. Carlos Andrés Giraldo
    Hincapié explains the way he was recruited: "I
    was conscripted by the military of Casabe on 4 August by soldier
    Anderson Andrés Anturi Ruíz. That day in the morning hours I was
    heading to the garage in town, to find a motorbike that I had in
    repair to head back to the path La Soledad where I live. I was in
    town because I was buying some tools for doing my agricultural work.
    At that moment I was detained by the army and they took me against
    my will to the military. They said that I had to serve my military
    service. I explained to them that I could not serve because my
    family depends economically on me, that my father is incapable of
    working, that my brother suffers from epilepsy. And also that I have
    never supported any of the armed actors, I am against arms, and
    against having to kill someone else. They told me that those were no
    reasons for not serving and from that moment I was already a
    soldier
    "46.
    Carlos Andrés Giraldo Hincapié was forced to sign three documents
    without being given the chance to read them. One of the documents
    was a paper stating that he joined the military voluntarily.
    However, as this paper was signed under pressure, the signature has
    to be considered invalid. Carlos Andres Giraldo Hincapie was only
    released from the military after serving 18 months of military
    service. His case too was presented by War Resisters' International
    to the Working Group on Arbitrary Detention (Opinion No 8/2008).

  • Pedro Manuel Sanchez Calix was illegally seized in the south of
    Bolívar in November 2006, to serve his military service. He was
    then transferred to a battalion from where he, after having been
    subjected to military instructions for seven months, was sent to the
    front. He was recruited to the battalion until his religious
    conscience and health did no longer allow him to continue with this
    illegitimate situation that had been justified by the discriminatory
    Colombian judicial system. After witnessing arbitrary violence and
    living in the ranks of the Colombian army in conditions that
    threatened his physical and psychological health, he decided to
    escape from the ranks of the Batallón Nueva Granada in
    Barrancabermeja in May 2007.


    Since
    May 2007, Pedro Manuel Sanchez Calix is a declared conscientious
    objector.



    The
    military prosecutor charged Pedro Manuel Sanchez Calix with
    desertion. Only in July 2009 did a military judge drop the charge and
    acquitted him47.


These
are only very few cases, which show the permanent danger of
recruitment conscientious objectors face. Together with the Asamblea
Nacional de Objectores y
Objetoras de Conciencia (ANOOC),
the national network of Colombian conscientious objector
organisations, War Resisters' International maintains a database of
Colombian conscientious objectors who publicly declared their
conscientious objection. This database now includes more than 100
declared conscientious objectors.

In
its Opinion No 8/2008, the Working Group on Arbitrary Detention
stated: “The detention of those who have expressly declared as
conscientious objectors does not have juridical support nor a legal
basis and their incorporation into the army against their will is a
clear violation of their postulates of conscience, which can violate
article 18 of the International Covenant on Civil and Political
Rights. Not to provide space for the right to conscientious objection
can be a violation of said article
48.



4. The Libreta militar (Military Card)

Articles
30 and 31 of law 48/1993 establish the Tarjeta reservista
(Reservist Card) and the Tarjeta provisional militar
(Provisional Military Card). According to article 30, the “The
reservist card is the document which can prove that one's military
situation has been resolved
49.

According
to article 36 of law 48/1993 (amended by Decree 2150/1995), all male
Colombians need to prove that they fulfilled their obligation to
resolve their military situation when they:


a)
enter into contracts with any public entity;


b)
enter into an administrative career;


c)
assume public office, and


d)
obtain a professional degree from any school of higher education
50.


This
article had been changed with Decree 2150/1995. Originally, the
libreta militar was necessary in many more cases. The term
libreta militar was not originally part of law 48/1993 – it
was only introduced by Decree 2150/1995, and is not defined. The term
libreta militar is commonly understood to mean the tarjeta
reservista
and tarjeta provisional militar, or any other
document replacing those.

However,
while article 36 had been changed in 1995, article 37 remains
unchanged and states: “No national or foreign company, official
or private, established or hereafter established in Colombia, may
have employment relations with adult persons who have not resolved
their military situation. Contravention of this provision is
punishable in the manner determined below.


This
in fact means that those who did not resolve their military situation
cannot legally be employed in Colombia, nor can they graduate from
university, or assume any public office (stand as candidate in
elections, etc).

According
to article 41, the following are defined as offenders: “h)
Public organisations, companies, private individuals, schools or
institutes of higher learning or technology who employ or receive
persons who did not resolve their military situation (...)”.

They can be fined with up to five monthly minimum salaries for each
person who did not resolve his military situation, according to
article 4251.

In
fact, the law is contradictory. While article 36 has been changed in
1995, and no longer requires proof that one has resolved ones
military situation when one enters a university, but only on
graduation, article 41 declares universities or institutions for
higher education as offenders when they receive a person who did not
resolve his military situation.

This
obviously can lead to confusion. Accion Colectiva de Objetores y
Objetoras de Conciencia
(ACOOC) describes that practice sometimes
even goes further than the law52:
Since May 2006 the centres of higher education demand the
presentation of the
libreta
militar in order to register for the first time or to
continue studying in the institution. Furthermore, they require to
sign a voluntary and spontaneous agreement in which those who do not
have a
libreta militar
undertake to resolve their military situation in the course of the
semester. These illegal and unconstitutional requirements were
demanded from universities by the National Recruitment Directorate by
official letter 006 DISCOR Z4 DIM 27 S1 155, dated 19 May 2006, by
which article 84 of the constitution53
and article 111 of decree 2150 from 1995 are violated
54.





Examples



  • Elías Stucky Byler,
    member of the Mennonite church and conscientious objector, received
    the following from the Registrar's Office of the Universidad
    Nacional in Bogotá because he did not present his libreta
    militar
    when registering to the university for his studies:

    The
    Registrar's Office requires the presentation of a military card from
    all those who have been admitted as undergraduates, as stipulated by
    Article 41, Law 48 of 1993 'Public organisations, companies, private
    individuals, schools or institutes of higher learning or technology
    who employ or receive persons who did not resolve their military
    situation [will be] subjected to sanctions.'


    Consequently,
    in compliance with the legal opinion issued by the Oficina Jurídica
    de Sede on 23 August 2004, the Registrar's Office requires from all
    those admitted the
    libreta
    militar
    for registration for undergraduate degrees. Nevertheless, taking into
    account the high number of those admitted who did not resolve this
    situation, we decided to supplement this with the signing of an
    agreement in which the applicant commits to resolve his military
    situation during the first semester of his course. However, taking
    into account your submission, you are granted a period of one (1)
    year in which to present the respective document
    55.


  • In
    Medellín, Martín
    Rodríguez
    initiated
    a writ for protection of fundamental rights (tutela)
    against the requirement of the libreta
    militar

    for entering the Universidad Nacional, argueing his conscientious
    objection and article 111 of decree 2150 of 1995. Martín
    Rodríguez's approach as conscientious objector is based on his
    condition as victim, as his brothers were assassinated because of
    the armed conflict.


    The
    writ was decided in favour of Martín Rodríguez to comply with
    article 111 of decree 2150 of 1995. The judgement of Tribunal
    Superior de Medellín

    says56:
    As
    the previous rule establishes, the requirement of the presentation of
    the
    libreta
    militar,
    and clearly this means to resolve the military situation, is not
    given for entering or continuing university studies, but only for
    obtaining a professional degree at any centre of higher education;
    and this is not what is alleged by the corresponding complainant, he
    only wants to begin his university studies, the respondent (the
    Universidad Nacional in Medellín) cannot introduce obligations not
    foreseen in the law, under violation of the right to due
    administrative process, in conjunction with the right to access to
    education
    57.



    Martin
    Rodriguez is presently studying at the university in Medellin, but
    will encounter the same problem again when he wants to graduate.


  • Julián Andrés Ovalle Fierro58
    from Bogota is a member of Accion Colectiva de Objetores y
    Objetoras de Conciencia
    (ACOOC) and a declared conscientious
    objector. As a conscientious objector, he did not resolve his
    military situation, and did not pay the military compensation quota.
    In the first months of 2009, he applied for a job as research
    assistant at the Instituto Colombiano de Antropología e Historia
    (ICANH) for research on “Ciudad, Fuerza pública y Juventud
    (City, public forces, and youth). He could provide all required
    documents for this employment but two:


    • his
      university diploma



    • his
      libreta militar




    Although
    he finished his studies in psychology, he has so far been unable to
    graduate, for lack of the libreta militar. He thus has been
    unable to obtain his university diploma in psychology.


    He
    concludes in a statement: “This
    had some strong implications on my civilian life as a subject of
    rights: I have had to avoid recruitment schemes daily in the cities
    and roads of the country, I could not obtain my professional title
    in psychology, and I could not have access to formal employment where
    I could put my acquired knowledge to the service of the community
    59.


Accion
Colectiva de Objetores y Objetoras de Conciencia
(ACOOC)
concludes about the Libreta Militar: “Although the
initial provisions about the
libreta
militar were made more flexible by article 111 of decree
2150 of 1995 and this brought as a positive consequence that the
libreta militar was
not a requirement for entering university education or for employment
in the private sector, in practice this document continues to be in
an arbitrary and illegal way an element of social control instigated
by the military authorities. Presently, both educational institutions
and the private industrial and commercial sector continue to require
the presentation of the
libreta
militar from young men to accept a position for study or
work, a situation that is evidently unconstitutional. This practice
continues under the premise of economic and legal sanctions against
those institutions that receive youth without a military document
60.

In
conclusion, the system of the libreta militar in Colombia
leads to grave violations of the human rights of conscientious
objectors: the inability to obtain a university degree and to obtain
any form of legal employment, plus the inability to stand for public
office.



The Cuota de
Compensacion Militar

Article
22 of law 48/1993 establishes the cuota de compensación militar
(military compensation quota), which has to be paid by those not
performing military service because they have been exempted for
health reasons or for lack of places in the Armed Forces. Article 22
reads: “The registered who does not enrol into the ranks and who is
qualified has to pay a pecuniary contribution to the Treasury, called
cuota de compensación militar61.
Originally, the quota was set by the Colombian government, but this
part of article 22 was declared unconstitutional by the
Constitutional Court of Colombia in August 200762.
The Court ruled that the quota has to be seen as a tax, and that only
Congress is empowered to decide on the level of tax, and not the
government.

Following
the decision of the Constitutional Court, Law 1140/2008 was passed to
regulate the military compensation quota (or tax). According to
article 1 para 1 of the same law, the income from the military
compensation quota goes directly to the Ministry of Defence “and
is earmarked for the development of the objectives and functions of
the public forces in fulfilment of their constitutional mission
63.

Article
6 of the same law exempts certain groups from payment of the quota:


The
following are exempted from payment of the
cuota
de compensación militar:

1.
Those who can prove with a certificate or card issued by a competent
authority to belong to level 1, 2, and 3 of the
Sistema
de Identificación y Selección de Beneficiarios - Sisbén.


2.
Those with physical, mental or neurosensory disorders with permanent
conditions which, according to the medical authority for recruitment,
present a clinical condition sufficiently severe and disabling and
not subject to recovery by any means.

3.
Indigenous people who reside in their territory and conserve their
cultural, social and economic integrity.

4.
Military personnel discharged following their third medical
examination
64.


However,
they will still have to pay the costs of the libreta militar,
which are not supposed to be higher than 15% of the monthly legal
minimum salary65.

In
light of the recent judgement by the European Court of Human Rights
in relation to the military exemption tax in Switzerland66,
the regulations for the military exemption quota in Colombia are
likely to amount to discrimination. In the Swiss case, the ECtHR
declared the Swiss exemption tax a violation of article 14 in
conjunction with article 8 of the European Convention of Human
Rights, “finding that the applicant had been the victim of
discriminatory treatment as there had been no reasonable
justification for the distinction made by the Swiss authorities
between, in particular, persons who were unfit for service and not
liable to the tax in question and those who were unfit for service
but were nevertheless obliged to pay the tax
67.


There
is reasonable concern that the Colombian regulations for the cuota
de compensacion militar
also lead to similar discrimination.



5. Death threats against conscientious objection
activists

On
Thursday, 29 May and Friday, 30 May 2008, Red Juvenil de Medellín
received the following message from redesnegras@hotmail.com: "Death
to anarchists disguised as pacifists. No more concerts of drugs and
communists. No further notice.
" The threats were directed at
eight named members and close friends of Red Juvenil, and
signed “Aguilas Negras”. War Resisters' International is
concerned about the negligence of the authorities of Medellin in
permitting the re-emergence of groups such as the Aguilas Negras,
apparently formed by former paramilitaries, and the threat they pose
to human rights in Medellín and to youth groups such as the Red
Juvenil
68.


In
August 2008, the conscientious objection group “Quinto Mandamiento”
from Barrancabermeja received a similar death threat from a group
calling themselves “Aguilas Negras”, signed by a Mauricio Rojas,
Cmdt. Magdalena Medio69.

While
these death threats do not originate from the public forces of
Colombia, it has to be pointed out that the government has a duty to
protect its citizens from death threats.


Luckily,
in those two cases, none of the death threats has, up to date, been
carried through.


6. Conclusions

This
report shows that generally young men in Colombia face widespread and
serious violations of their human rights in relation to military
recruitment: batidas that lead to forced recruitment which
amounts to arbitrary detention are a widespread method of recruitment
for the Armed Forces of Colombia.

Conscientious
objectors face further risks, and further violations of their human
rights. Not only is their right to conscientious objection not
recognised, they also face discrimination as a consequence of their
conscientious objection and their refusal to “resolve their
military situation” to obtain the libreta militar needed for
graduation from university or almost any form of formal employment.





In
addition, War Resisters' International is concerned about reported
cases of death threats against conscientious objection activists.







Notes


1Working
Group on Arbitrary Detention: Opinion 8/2008, 8 May 2009,
http://wri-irg.org/news/2008/colombia-opinion-es.htm,
accessed 10 August 2009




2See
Yeo-Bum Yoon and Myung-Jin Choi vs. Republic of Korea,
CCPR/C/88/D/1321-1322/2004, 23 January 2007,
http://wri-irg.org/node/6221,
accessed 10 August 2009




3Working
Group on Arbitrary Detention: Opinion 8/2008, 8 May 2009,
http://wri-irg.org/news/2008/colombia-opinion-es.htm,
accessed 10 August 2009




4European
Court of Human Rights: Chamber judgement Ülke v. Turkey
(Application no. 39437/98), 24 January 2006,
http://wri-irg.org/node/615,
accessed 10 August 2009




5Human
Rights Committee, Eightieth session: Consideration of report
submitted by States Parties under article 40 of the Covenant:
Concluding observations of the Human Rights Committee: COLOMBIA,
CCPR/CO/80/COL, 26 May 2004,
http://daccessdds.un.org/doc/UNDOC/GEN/G04/419/12/PDF/G0441912.pdf?OpenElement,
accessed 6 August 2009




6Human
Rights Council: Universal Periodic Review: Report of the Working
Group on the Universal Periodic Review: Colombia, A/HRC/10/82, 9
January 2009,
http://lib.ohchr.org/HRBodies/UPR/Documents/Session3/CO/A_HRC_10_82_Colombia_E.pdf,
accessed 6 August 2009




7Human
Rights Council: Universal Periodic Review: Report of the Working
Group on the Universal Periodic Review: Colombia; Addendum: Views on
conclusions and/or recommendations, voluntary commitments and
replies presented by the State under review, A/HRC/10/82/Add.1, 13
January 2009,
http://lib.ohchr.org/HRBodies/UPR/Documents/Session3/CO/A_HRC_10_82_Add1_Colombia_E.pdf,
accessed 6 August 2009




8Demanda
de inconstitucionalidad Expediente No. D-7685, Gina Cabarcas,
Antonio Barreto, Daniél Bonilla.




9Procuraduria
General de la Nacion: Concepto 4787:
Demanda de inconstitucionalidad contra el artículo 27 de la Ley 48
de 1993, por la cual se reglamenta el servicio de reclutamiento y
movilización, 2 June 2009,
http://www.procuraduria.gov.co/descargas/conceptos/conceptos_2009/junio/D-7685_C4787.doc,
accessed 10 August 2009




10Political
Constitution of Colombia, 1991, with amendments until 2005,
http://201.245.176.98/prontus_senado/site/artic/20050708/asocfile/reformas_constitucion_politica_de_colombia_1.pdf,
accessed 03 July 2009




11Ley
48 de 1993 por la cual se reglamenta el servicio de Reclutamiento y
Movilización, 3 March 1993,
http://www.lexbasecolombia.com/lexbase/normas/leyes/1993/L0048de1993.htm,
accessed 5 August 2009





13Ley
48 de 1993 por la cual se reglamenta el servicio de Reclutamiento y
Movilización, 3 March 1993,
http://www.lexbasecolombia.com/lexbase/normas/leyes/1993/L0048de1993.htm,
accessed 5 August 2009




14Ejercito
Nacional, Direccion de Reclutamiento: Infractores y Sanciones, 19
April 2009, http://www.ejercito.mil.co/?idcategoria=221624,
accessed 6 July 2009




15Radio
Santa Fe Bogota: CONCLUYE LA MÁS GRANDE JORNADA DE RECLUTAMIENTO EN
EL PAÍS, 14 February 2009,
http://www.radiosantafe.com/2008/02/14/concluye-la-mas-grande-jornada-de-reclutamiento-en-el-pais/,
accessed 03 July 2009




16El
Tiempo: 52 % de la fuerza quedará fuera de combate tras fallo de
Consejo de Estado: comandante de FF.MM., 1 May 2009,
http://www.eltiempo.com/colombia/justicia/el-52-por-ciento-de-la-fuerza-queda-por-fuera-de-combate-afirma-comandante-de-las-fuerzas-militares_5099183-1,
accessed 03 July 2009




17Coronel
Bohórquez: Interview, Published 21 October 2005




18Red
Juvenil de Medellin: Denuncia publica, 6 August 2009




19Information
provided by Adriana Castano, Chat, 6 August 2009




20Acción
Colectiva De Objetores Y Objetoras De Conciencia: Informe Proceso de
Reclutamiento en Colombia: Irregularidades, Objecion de Conciencia,
August 2009




21Name
changed to preserve anonymity.




22Acción
Colectiva De Objetores Y Objetoras De Conciencia: Informe Proceso de
Reclutamiento en Colombia: Irregularidades, Objecion de Conciencia,
August 2009




23Jóvenes
Caqueteños: “Objetamos participar de las guerras y a reproducir
las prácticas de una sociedad militarista”, 10 March 2009, Email
Andres Orozco, also at
http://www.nodo50.org/tortuga/Jovenes-de-Caqueta-Colombia,
accessed 10 August 2009




24War
Resisters' International: CO-Update No 43, December 2008,
http://wri-irg.org/node/6126,
accessed 6 July 2009; Red Juvenil de Medellin: El reclutamiento en
Medellin…, November 2008,
http://www2.redjuvenil.org/content/view/606/40/,
accessed 6 July 2009




25War
Resisters' International: CO-Update No 36, May/June 2008,
http://wri-irg.org/node/1372,
accessed 12 August 2009




26War
Resisters' International: COLOMBIA: Conscientious objector Diego
Yesid Bosa Rico on hunger strike, 27 March 2008,
http://wri-irg.org/news/alerts/msg00106.html,
accessed 6 July 2009




27War
Resisters' International: CO-Update No 39, May/June 2008,
http://wri-irg.org/node/1372,
accessed 6 July 2009




28Red
Juvenil de Medellin: Relato de un joven que se niega a participar
del ejercito, reclutado ilegalmente en Barrancabermeja, February
2008, http://www2.redjuvenil.org/content/view/484/40/,
accessed 6 July 2009




29Red
Juvenil de Medellin: Desde los primeros dias de enero el ejercito
obliga a jovenes a ir a la guerra, enero de 2008, January 2008,
http://www2.redjuvenil.org/content/view/482/40/,
accessed 6 July 2009; Red Juvenil de Medellin: Reclutamiento de las
fuerzas militares en los barrios populares de Medellín, January
2008, http://www2.redjuvenil.org/content/view/486/40/,
accessed 6 July 2009; Red Juvenil de Medellin: Reclutamiento forzado
en el polideportivo de un barrio en Cimitarra, Magdalena Medio...,,
February 2008, http://www2.redjuvenil.org/content/view/492/40/,
accessed 6 July 2009




30War
Resisters' International: CO-Update No 39, May/June 2008,
http://wri-irg.org/node/1372,
accessed 6 July 2009




31Working
Group on Arbitrary Detention: Opinion 8/2008, 8 May 2009,
http://wri-irg.org/news/2008/colombia-opinion-es.htm,
accessed 6 July 2009




32Informe
del Grupo de Trabajo sobre la Detención Arbitraria, Adición:
MISIÓN A COLOMBIA (1º a 10 de octubre de 2008), 16 February 2009,
http://daccess-ods.un.org/access.nsf/Get?Open&DS=A/HRC/10/21/Add.3&Lang=S,
accessed 03 July 2009 (translation by WRI)




33Political
Constitution of Colombia, 1991, with amendments until 2005,
unofficial English translation,
http://confinder.richmond.edu/admin/docs/colombia_const2.pdf,
accessed 11 August 2009




34Political
Constitution of Colombia, 1991, with amendments until
2005,unofficial English translation,
http://confinder.richmond.edu/admin/docs/colombia_const2.pdf,
accessed 11 August 2009




35Sentencia
T-409 de junio 8 de 1992. M.P. Dr. José Gregorio Hernández
Galindo





37Sentencia
T-363 de 14 de agosto de 1995




38Gustavo
Monroy: If you open your mind life teaches you. Testimony from
Gustavo Monroy (2006), http://wri-irg.org/co/cases/monroy-en.htm,
accessed 10 August 2009




39War
Resisters' International: CO-Update No 20, May 2006,
http://wri-irg.org/node/876,
accessed 10 August 2009




40Email
Red Juvenil de Medellin to War Resisters' International, 28 May 2009




41Email
Red Juvenil de Medellin to War Resisters' International, 19 November
2009




42http://wri-irg.org/node/2887,
accessed 6 July 2009




43War
Resisters' International: CO-Update No 37, March 2008,
http://wri-irg.org/node/1343,
accessed 6 July 2009




44War
Resisters' International: CO-Update No 39, May/June 2008,
http://wri-irg.org/node/1372,
accessed 6 July 2009; Acción Colectiva De Objetores Y Objetoras De
Conciencia: INFORME PROCESO DE RECLUTAMIENTO EN COLOMBIA:
IRREGULARIDADES, OBJECIÓN DE CONCIENCIA, August 2009




45War
Resisters' International: COLOMBIA: Update on Carlos Andrés Giraldo
Hincapié and Frank Yair Estrada Marin, 18 July 2007,
http://wri-irg.org/news/alerts/msg00096.html,
accessed 10 August 2009




46War
Resisters' International: COLOMBIA: Conscientious objector Carlos
Andrés Giraldo Hincapié in the hands of the military, 24 November
2006, http://wri-irg.org/news/alerts/msg00072.html,
accessed 10 August 2009




47Corporacion
Paz Caribe, Sincelejo: Information provided in various emails, 2008
and 2009.




48Working
Group on Arbitrary Detention: Opinion No 8/2008, 8 May 2008,
http://wri-irg.org/news/2008/colombia-opinion-es.htm,
accessed 10 August 2009




49Ley
48 de 1993 por la cual se reglamenta el servicio de Reclutamiento y
Movilización, 3 March 1993,
http://www.lexbasecolombia.com/lexbase/normas/leyes/1993/L0048de1993.htm,
accessed 5 August 2009




50Ley
48 de 1993 por la cual se reglamenta el servicio de Reclutamiento y
Movilización, 3 March 1993,
http://www.lexbasecolombia.com/lexbase/normas/leyes/1993/L0048de1993.htm,
accessed 5 August 2009




51Ley
48 de 1993 por la cual se reglamenta el servicio de Reclutamiento y
Movilización, 3 March 1993,
http://www.lexbasecolombia.com/lexbase/normas/leyes/1993/L0048de1993.htm,
accessed 5 August 2009




52See:
Accion Colectiva de Objetores y Objetoras de Conciencia:
Irregularidades en la definicion de la situacion militar de los
Colombianos, marzo 2008




53Artículo
84 de la CN: "Cuando un derecho o una actividad hayan sido
reglamentados de manera general, las autoridades públicas no podrán
establecer ni exigir permisos, licencias o requisitos adicionales
para su ejercicio".




54En
este decreto se prohíbe la exigencia de presentar la libreta
militar para matricularse por primera vez a la universidad o para y
sólo prescribe algunas situaciones de la vida civil en que será
solicitada, entre las cuales no aparece matricularse en la
universidad o firmar actas de compromiso para seguir estudiando en
los centros de educación superior.




55Acción
Colectiva De Objetores Y Objetoras De Conciencia: INFORME PROCESO DE
RECLUTAMIENTO EN COLOMBIA: IRREGULARIDADES, OBJECIÓN DE CONCIENCIA,
August 2009




56Tribunal
superior Medellín, sala de decisión penal. Acción de tutela de
segunda instancia -0683-2006 (013) 2007. Febrero 26 de 2007.




57Accion
Colectiva de Objetores y Objetoras de Conciencia: Irregularidades en
la definicion de la situacion militar de los Colombianos, marzo 2008





59Acción
Colectiva De Objetores Y Objetoras De Conciencia: INFORME PROCESO DE
RECLUTAMIENTO EN COLOMBIA: IRREGULARIDADES, OBJECIÓN DE CONCIENCIA,
August 2009




60Accion
Colectiva de Objetores y Objetoras de Conciencia: Irregularidades en
la definicion de la situacion militar de los Colombianos, marzo 2008




61Ley
48 de 1993 por la cual se reglamenta el servicio de Reclutamiento y
Movilización, 3 March 1993,
http://www.lexbasecolombia.com/lexbase/normas/leyes/1993/L0048de1993.htm,
accessed 5 August 2009




62Sentencia
C-621/07, Referencia: expediente D-6598, 14 August 2007,
http://www.lexbasecolombia.com/lexbase/jurisprudencia/corte%20constitucional/constitucionalidad/C0621de2007.htm,
accessed 11 August 2009




63Ley
1184 de 2008 Por la cual se regula la cuota de compensación militar
y se dictan otras disposiciones, 29 February 2008,
http://www.secretariasenado.gov.co/senado/basedoc/ley/2008/ley_1184_2008.html,
accessed 11 August 2009




64Ley
1184 de 2008 Por la cual se regula la cuota de compensación militar
y se dictan otras disposiciones, 29 February 2008,
http://www.secretariasenado.gov.co/senado/basedoc/ley/2008/ley_1184_2008.html,
accessed 11 August 2009




65Presidencia
de la Republica: Personas de estratos 1, 2 y 3, beneficiadas con
cuota de compensación militar, March 2008,
http://web.presidencia.gov.co/sp/2008/marzo/06/07062008.html,
accessed 11 August 2009





67Press
release issued by the Registrar: CHAMBER JUDGMENT GLOR v.
SWITZERLAND, 30 April 2009,
http://cmiskp.echr.coe.int/tkp197/view.asp?action=html&documentId=850037&portal=hbkm&source=externalbydocnumber&table=F69A27FD8FB86142BF01C1166DEA398649,
accessed 11 August 2009




68War
Resisters' International: Death threats against Colombian WRI
affiliate Red Juvenil de Medellín, 9 June 2008




69Email
Andres Orozco, Quinto Mandamiento, to War Resisters' International,
29 August 2008


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Submitted by George (not verified) on Thu, 20 Aug 2009 - 09:44

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After visiting Colombia a couple of times I can honestly say that there is a huge problem with human rights. You are either rich or dirt poor, there is no in between.