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Again, our work for the right to conscientious objection got some positive outcome: The UN Working Group on Arbitrary Detention gave an opinion on three cases from Colombia presented by War Resisters' International, and clearly stated that the recruitment of conscientious objectors constitutes a form of arbitrary detention (see main article). While this does not change the situation on the ground in Colombia immediately, it is nevertheless a great and important victory for all conscientious objectors in Colombia and beyond.

It will now be on us and the groups in Colombia to use the opinion of the Working Group wisely in our efforts to promote the right to conscientious objection in Colombia and everywhere.
The opinion of the Working Group is also the result of the close cooperation between War Resisters' International and its partners in Colombia, who provided the information which WRI used to submit the cases. It shows what can be achieved when the knowledge of local groups is brought together with international experience.

However, to continue to do this War Resisters' International depends on your donations to be able to carry out this work. We therefore ask you to donate to WRI online now at

Andreas Speck

Veröffentlicht in CO-Update, October 2008, No. 42