Document - Colombia: hostages must be released immediately
AI index: AMR 23/002/2013
22 January 2013
Colombia: hostages must be released immediately
Amnesty International is calling for the immediate and unconditional release, as well as respect for the lives and personal safety, of five mining workers taken hostage last Friday, reportedly by the National Liberation Army (ELN) guerrilla group.
The five workers, including two Peruvians, one Canadian and two Colombians, were taken captive in the northern department (province) of Bolívar.
Amnesty International condemns hostage-taking, which is a serious breach of international humanitarian law and can constitute a war crime.
The organization is calling for the immediate and unconditional release of the five men and any other civilians being held by the parties to the Colombian armed conflict.
Amnesty International also calls on the authorities to identify those responsible for this and other cases of kidnapping and hostage-taking and ensure that they are brought to justice.