Colombian Government shows nothing has changed

The Colombian Government hasn't changed one jot. It is still picking on trade unionists who oppose its policies and the activities of its friends in business and in the paramilitaries.

The latest example is the arrest – on trumped up and vague charges of 'rebellion' – of the legal officer of the farmworkers' union FENSUAGRO, Alirio Garcia. His wife Rosalba – a FENSUAGRO activist - is already in jail, but has faced no trial. He was arrested on 10 August, she on 9 March.

The Colombian Government often arrests Colombian trade unionists on similar charges, holds them for months or even years, and then releases them without trial. It's an easy way to harass the trade union movement, and it also puts a deadly target on the back of each trade unionist – people accused of rebellion or terrorism, even if there is absolutely no evidence, are automatically added to the paramilitary death lists.

The TUC has protested to the Colombian Embassy, and our partners in Justice for Colombia have arranged a delegation to visit the Embassy on Friday. But these arrests will carry on until the international community – and especially Governments like Britain's, who the Colombian regime see as a key ally – get tough.

That means suspending all military aid, cancelling all trade negotiations, and supporting action by the ILO against Colombia's viciously anti-union regime.

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