Latest news
map

Colombia Pre-session blog

15 Apr 18 

On Friday 13 April, lawyer Oskar Mulder attended the pre-session organized by UPR-Info, for the review of Colombia. Oskar wrote a blog about his experiences that was published on the website of the law firm Brandeis. 

"Governments shall ensure that lawyers (a) are able to perform all of their professional functions without intimidation, hindrance, harassment or improper interference; (b) are able to travel and to consult with their clients freely both within their own country and abroad; and (c) shall not suffer, or be threatened with, prosecution or administrative, economic or other sanctions for any action taken in accordance with recognized professional duties, standards and ethics.

– Article 16 of the UN Basic Principles on the on the Role of Lawyers

Unfortunately, there are (still) many lawyers around the world who cannot exercise their profession freely.

UPR pre-sessions Geneva 13 April 2018

As a member of the focus group Latin America of the Dutch organization Lawyers for Lawyers (L4L) I advocate for the human rights of lawyers. In this context I attended the pre-sessions for the Colombia Universal Periodic Review 2018 at the United Nations Headquarters in Geneva last week. The UPR is a UN mechanism that is used to review the human rights in UN member states, by giving recommendations. The pre-sessions, organized by UPR Info since 2012, are organized in order to ensure that the recommendations that will be made are specific and well-targeted. During the pre-sessions, attended by NGO’s and UN member state delegations, several NGOs gave a presentation about thematic human rights topics (such as the rights of indigenous people, peasants and LGBT people). The attending country delegations were allowed to make remarks or ask questions. After the presentations, the NGOs could speak with country delegations, for example to suggest recommendations. On behalf of L4L I spoke with several country delegations to address the human rights situation of (human rights) lawyers in Colombia and presented them our suggested recommendations. Hopefully these will appear in the UPR.

During my visit to Geneva I also had the honour to speak with the NGOs Comisión Colombiana de Juristas and DCI-Colombia, who shared interesting but disturbing stories. Please visit their websites for more information.

Rommel Duran

For us at L4L, it is very valuable to speak with lawyers about their human rights situation. For example, recently the Colombian lawyer Rommel Duran visited Amsterdam. We had the chance to speak with him about his situation and to make an interview about this. You can find the interview here. A shorter version was also published by Mr. Online, a Dutch platform for the legal profession, which you can find here (only in Dutch).

Lawyers for Lawyers

L4L, established in 1986, is an independent foundation that is solely funded by lawyers’ donations. L4L is committed to safeguard the proper functioning of the rule of law through a free and independent exercise of the legal profession in accordance with international norms, including the United Nations Basic Principles on the Role of Lawyers. L4L was granted Special Consultative status with the UN Economic and Social Council in July 2013.

bureau Brandeis

bureau Brandeis strongly supports L4L and advocates for our colleagues all around the world. As custodians of the state of justice, protected by professional privilege, we believe that lawyers have a unique place in society.

News Colombia


(Nederlands) Doe mee aan de AVDR voor L4L Rally!

26 Jun 18 Sorry, this entry is not available in English.

Colombia Interview with lawyer Rommel Durán

09 Apr 18 Colombian human rights lawyer Rommel Durán: “A ‘social genocide’ is taking place in my country” The Colombian human rights lawyer Rommel Durán Castellanos recently spent several days in England and the Netherlands to rally support for his colleagues, who are exposed to threats and violence. Another aim of his trip was to prepare for the international […]

Colombia Report Caravana mission

30 Nov 16 On 18 November 2016, the report of the fifth Caravana de Juristas mission to Colombia was published. L4L joined the mission for the fifth time. In August 2016, Wout Albers and Marit Balkema visited Colombia with the Caravana. The mission consisted of lawyers, prosecutors and judges from 12 different countries and took place at the […]

Colombia Oral statement at Human Rights Committee

21 Oct 16 L4L delivered an oral statement to the Human Rights Committee about the situation of lawyers in Colombia. This week, the Committee reviewed the implementation of the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights by Colombia. L4L highlighted the failure of the Colombian authorities to ensure the right of access to justice and effective legal representation.  Despite the current […]

Colombia Submission to Human Rights Committee

22 Sep 16 In October 2016, the UN Human Rights Committee will review Colombia’s compliance with its international human rights obligations. L4L submitted a submission for this review, to inform the Committee about the situation of lawyers in Colombia. Due to our participation in the mission Caravana Internacional de Juristas last August, L4L was able to share recent information […]