Human Rights and Democracy 2014-15


This is one of 27 human rights priority countries included in the latest annual FCO Human Rights Report. Updates are published on the GOV.UK website every six months to highlight key human rights events in these countries, and to report on actions that the UK has taken.

Comments on the main report or updates can be made below. They will be monitored and moderated by staff at the Human Rights and Democracy Department at the FCO who will also try and answer as many questions as possible.

Read this section of the report on GOV.UK

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2 comments on “Colombia

  1. Rodrigo says:

    One of the major concerns is what Colombia will be doing in Tolima. If the plans go ahead with Anglo Ashanti Gold the region risks a severe depletion in ground water quality and risk of cyanide poisoning to the locals despite efforts to regulate the industry technology has not progressed here. Therefore urgent pressures should be made by the FCO to constrain the powers of multinationals in precipitating ecological and human rights abuse in these regions. It would be far better for the FCO to work with the government directly than for the whole area to be privatised to grossly under-performing mining company

    1. FCO Human Rights says:

      Thank you for your comment. The potential for multinational companies to cause damage to the local communities where they operate, whether ecologically and / or with disregard to human rights, is a concern that both the UK and Government of Colombia share. This is why business and human rights is a priority for the FCO through our Embassy in Bogotá. Foreign Office officials continue to meet with the Colombian government, civil society and businesses in Colombia to discuss the UK Action Plan on Business and Human Rights in line with our commitment to work for widespread international uptake of the UN Guiding Principles and to developing partnerships with other countries to progress this. The Colombian government has demonstrated its commitment to this issue by signing up to the Voluntary Principles on Security and Human Rights (the only country in Latin America so far to do so) and is developing a National Action Plan that incorporates business and human rights. After three years of support through the FCO’s Human Rights and Democracy Programme Fund, the policy guidelines were launched in July 2014 by Colombia’s Presidential Office for Human Rights. The Colombian government intends to launch its public policy on business and human rights in December 2015.

      In addition to support on Colombia’s National Action Plan, in 2015 the British Embassy in Bogotá will develop a project that focuses on the “remedy” pillar of the UN Guiding Principles in order to promote shared knowledge on the human rights impacts in the gold mining and construction materials sectors and develop tools for their prevention, mitigation and access to non-judicial remedy. The environmental impacts of mining in these sectors on local communities forms part of the analysis of the human rights impacts. The project will include the active participation of the Colombian Government, mining companies, community-based organisations and relevant civil society organisations, and is supported by the Colombian Ministry of Mines and the Presidential High Advisory Office on Human Rights. These measures will help ensure that companies in the extractive industries operate responsibly, with appropriate oversight.