On Wednesday 27th February, British trade unionists and lawyers, assembled at the TUC, UK Trades Union Congress, called for justice in the case of Henry Diaz, disappeared Colombian trade unionist. The protesters included Steve Gillan, General Secretary of the Prison Officers’ Association, Billy Hayes, CWU General Secretary, Nick Sigler, head of international at UNISON, the UK’s largest public sector union and John Rimmer, former president of NASUWT, the UK teachers’ union. The group also included Simpson Millar lawyers Bryan Nott and Asha Wije.
Those demonstrating were calling for the Colombian authorities to implement justice in the case of Henry Diaz, disappeared since 18th April 2012. Mr. Diaz’ clothes were found on a road linking two army checkpoints and in May 2012 he was awarded “precautionary measures” by the Inter-American Commission of Human Rights, obligating the Colombian authorities to protect him, and carry out an urgent search. Yet to date, the Colombian authorities have not established what happened and have given no account of Mr. Diaz’ whereabouts.
Henry Diaz is one of 69 trade unionists to be murdered or disappeared during the first two years of the Santos government, and according to the UN, impunity for these crimes remains at 95%. JFC is campaigning for justice these cases.
Simpson Millar and JFC launched the campaign for Henry Diaz at Labour Party Conference 2012, with numerous messages to the Colombian government, signed by high profile MPs and union leaders.