Inter-American Commission of Human Rights (IACHR) has learned of the death
of the children Paula Andrea Arboleda, Alejandra Arboleda, Gustavo Isaza Carmona,
David Ramírez, Marcela Sánchez and Harold Giovanni Tabares and of the wounds
suffered by four other minors as a direct result of actions taken by members of
the Colombian army on August 15, 2000 in the rural area of Pueblo Rico, in the
department of Antioquia, Republic of Colombia.
Commission has conveyed to the Colombian authorities its special concern for
clarification of the confusing incident that caused the death of these six
children while they were on a school outing.
The State must fulfill its obligation to conduct a serious and exhaustive
judicial enquiry, with every guarantee of independence and impartiality, in
order to arrive at the truth, establish responsibility, and satisfy the rights
of the relatives of the victims.
Commission will follow with the utmost attention progress made in investigating
these facts in light of President Andrés Pastrana’s public commitment, of
which it has taken note, and it hopes that the State will comply with its
international obligations, including its duty to take serious and effective
steps to protect the civilian population, and especially children, from the
consequences of the armed conflict in Colombia.