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Report of the High Commissioner for Human Rights on the situation of human rights in Colombia, E/CN.4/2006/9, May 16, 2006

Situation of especially vulnerable groups

Several especially vulnerable groups were affected by violent actions perpetrated by illegal groups in the course of the internal armed conflict, as well as by violations of their  fundamental rights and liberties.  The vulnerable groups were also affected by certain policies and by the behaviour of certain public servants. They included human rights defenders, members of organizations of women and victims, leaders of communities and displaced persons and trade unionists.  Communities normally at risk, such as those displaced or blockaded, as well as indigenous and Afro-Colombian communities and other ethnic minorities, were particularly affected and suffered violations and breaches. Other especially vulnerable groups include children, women, persons belonging to sexual minorities, journalists, members and leaders of political parties, conscientious objectors, detainees, hostages and disappeared persons, as well as  local authorities and judicial staff.

20.  Lesbians, gays, bisexuals and transgenders have also allegedly been the victims of ill-treatment attributed to State agents.  There is a report that police officers, in October, forced the legal representative of the “Casa de Eventos Mango” establishment in Barranquilla (Atlántico) to undress and insulted him.

Sexual minorities

27.  Lesbians, gays, bisexuals and transgenders were exposed to murder and threats in the name of “social cleansing”. Generally speaking the results of investigations into the identities of perpetrators are very inadequate. Those groups were the victims of arbitrary detentions and cruel, inhuman or degrading treatment by members of the police force. There have also been allegations of harassment of homosexuals by members of illegal armed groups. There are no specific public policies to prevent or penalize such actions or to eliminate discrimination against  those groups, especially in educational establishments, in the field of employment, in the police  force and in detention centres.

Link to full text of the report: Report-OHCHR-situation Colombia-2006-eng