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Colombia: ICITAP Holds Closing Ceremony to Mark Conclusion of Human Identification Program within Human Rights Violation Program

On January 20, ICITAP-Colombia, with the support of the Bureau of International Narcotics and the Law Enforcement Affairs (INL) of the United States Department of State, held a closing ceremony to present the results and achievements highlights of the project "Technical Assistance to the Attorney General's Office of Colombia and other justice institutions to strengthen investigations of disappeared persons and human rights violations." The ceremony was attended by 140 people from four Colombian agencies: Provincial Government of the Nation (AGO), Colombian National Police (CNP), Institute of Legal Medicine and Forensic Sciences (INML) and the Special Jurisdiction for Peace (JEP). The Deputy Chief of Mission (DCM) of the U.S. Embassy in Bogotá and the Deputy Attorney General (DAG) of Colombia delivered opening remarks to highlight the program's achievements. During the two-year program, ICITAP worked tirelessly alongside 464 Colombian officials who received technical assistance and specialized forensic training that resulted in the location of 623 burial sites, the exhumation of 1,515 bodies, the identification of 717 bodies and the dignified return of 639 bodies to victims’ relatives of the 50-year armed conflict in Colombia. In addition, ICITAP with the financial support of INL held 43 days of DNA sampling from victim’s relatives (Jornadas) to help in the identification of human remains located at these grave sites. During these jornadas, 6,055 victim’s relatives attended, AGO officials collected 2,077 DNA samples and conducted 1,366 interviews.

Updated August 11, 2023