Inmates killed in Colombia riot shot intentionally

BOGOTA, COLOMBIA (AP) – New evidence indicates most of the 24 inmates killed during a prison riot in Colombia’s capital earlier this year over fears that crowded, unhygienic conditions would fuel a virus outbreak were shot to death intentionally, according to a report released by Human Rights Watch yesterday.

The organisation said autopsy reports it commissioned from independent forensic experts shed light on one of the deadliest prison uprisings in the nation’s recent history.

The Independent Forensic Expert Group and the International Rehabilitation Council for Torture Victims concluded that none of the dead were shot in a way that indicates whover fired only wanted to injure them.

“Most of the gunshot wounds described in the autopsy reports are consistent with having been produced with the objective of killing,” the experts found.

The report does not determine who fired in the chaotic moments of the March 21 uprising, but it raises new questions about compliance with international human rights law and the importance of a thorough investigation.

“This new report is based on official documentation pointing to the intentional killing of detainees, yet there is little sign of progress in the investigation,” said Americas Director at Human Rights Watch José Miguel Vivanco.

File photo shows inmates displaying a sign reading in Spanish ‘More than 30 dead’ at La Modelo jail in Bogota, Colombia. PHOTO: AP