The International Verification Mission and Las Pavas
From November 27 until December 2, forty people from 15 countries went to Colombia to look into how safe is to defend human rights in Colombia. The International Verification Mission on the Defence of Human Rights in Colombia was set to evaluate recommendations issued by United Nations Special Rapporteur Margaret Sekaggya, who visited Colombia in September 2009, after illegal surveillance and harassment of human rights defenders, justices, political opposition by Colombian intelligence agencyDAS was unveiled in April 2009. A campaign for the Right to Defend Human Rights was launched soon after, aimed at achieving progress in five fronts: increasing security of human rights defenders, ending impunity for attacks committed against them and stopping the misuse of intelligence, baseless prosecution and stigmatization of human rights defenders, including by public officials.
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On November 18-19, the Church of the Brethren hosted the annual meeting of the Historic Peace Churches/Fellowship of Reconciliation Consultative Committee for a time of fellowship, mutual support and conversation on ecumenical engagement for peace and justice.
The Historic Peace Churches (HPC)/Fellowship of Reconciliation (FOR) Consultative Committee (“Committee” below) is a group of Friends, Brethren, Mennonites and representatives of the Fellowship of Reconciliation USA. Members have historically come together to uphold the Gospel of peace through dialogue and advocacy in faith circles and support for appropriate interventions where nonviolent witness is needed.