Règle correspondante
Colombia
Practice Relating to Rule 142. Instruction in International Humanitarian Law within Armed Forces
Colombia’s Directive on IHL issued in 1993 by the Colombian Ministry of National Defence states:
The Ministry of National Defence is issuing instructions intended to intensify the development of training programmes for members of the police in subjects pertaining to respect for human rights and compliance with the rules of international humanitarian law, with the aim of preventing and rectifying conduct that violates those rules. 
Colombia, Normas de Derecho Internacional Humanitario, Directiva Permanente No. 017, Ministerio de Defensa Nacional, 17 August 1993, Section IV(A).
In Colombia’s Basic Military Manual (1993), the Minister of National Defence defines various priorities, including:
We are trying to firmly establish within the Armed Forces and the National Police a culture and an ethic of respect, and to this end, activities of dissemination, instruction and capacity building with respect to human rights and humanitarian law have been started and developed. 
Colombia, Derecho Internacional Humanitario – Manual Básico para las Personerías y las Fuerzas Armadas de Colombia, Ministerio de Defensa Nacional, 1995, p. XIV.
The Minister adds:
The publication today of this Manual is intended to increase the dissemination and application of the instruments of international humanitarian law to which we are party. With it, we are fulfilling the obligation contained in the four Geneva Conventions and the Additional Protocols to disseminate their content as widely as possible, in time of peace as well as in time of war, and to incorporate their study in the programmes of military instruction. 
Colombia, Derecho Internacional Humanitario – Manual Básico para las Personerías y las Fuerzas Armadas de Colombia, Ministerio de Defensa Nacional, 1995, pp. XIV and XV.
The manual stresses that, before conflicts occur, there is an obligation “to adopt plans and programmes of dissemination and capacity building through which IHL is made known to … the Armed Forces”. It further states that this obligation to instruct also binds organized armed opposition groups. Lastly, in a chapter dealing with the 1977 Additional Protocol II, the manual states: “It is important to underline the obligation incumbent upon States to organize periodical and systematic instruction on the content of the Protocol, so that the Public Force … can apply and insist on respect for its norms.” 
Colombia, Derecho Internacional Humanitario – Manual Básico para las Personerías y las Fuerzas Armadas de Colombia, Ministerio de Defensa Nacional, 1995, pp. 27, 28, 37 and 46.
Colombia’s Instructors’ Manual (1999) states that it “aims to serve as a tool, as a guiding instrument by which the instructor presents in a simple form to the soldiers and seamen the minimum rules regarding persons, objects, the wounded and others, in times of peace, war and conflict”. 
Colombia, Derechos Humanos & Derecho Internacional Humanitario – Manual de Instrucción de la Guía de Conducta para el Soldado e Infante de Marina, Ministerio de Defensa Nacional, Oficina de Derechos Humanos, Fuerzas Militares de Colombia, Santafé de Bogotá, 1999, p. 15.
Colombia’s Operational Law Manual (2009) states:
Commanders at all levels must be responsible for teaching and training their subordinates in the two sets of rules of engagement [under either an international humanitarian law framework or a human rights framework].
The Education and Doctrine Directorates must design training programmes to ensure compliance with the ROEs [Rules of Engagement].
In addition, Commanders at every level must ensure that before an operation or mission is initiated, their subordinates are briefed in an appropriate, clear and simple manner on the meaning and application of the rules of engagement.
To this end, he or she must ensure that:
(ii) they are trained in the use of force based on the set of rules selected [either international humanitarian law or human rights]; and
(iii) they are trained in the procedure for authorizing and changing from one set of rules to another[.]
To achieve this objective, the Ministry of National Defence, through its the Comprehensive Human Rights and IHL Policy, has established a training system whereby “a systemic approach to operational training is achieved through the development of training scenarios based on real situations, in which tactical training is combined with instruction in human rights and IHL”. The aim is thus to provide practical instruction on the rules for the conduct of land operations to maintain security and on the rules of engagement. 
Colombia, Manual de Derecho Operacional Manual FF.MM. 3-41 Público, Primera Edición 2009, Comando General de las Fuerzas Militares, aprobado por el Comandante General de las Fuerzas Armadas por Disposición Número 056, 7 December 2009, p. 112.
[footnotes in original omitted]
The manual also states: “When considered necessary, the OLA [Operational Legal Adviser] may propose lessons-learned exercises based on the planning, execution and evaluation of military operations, as relevant.” 
Colombia, Manual de Derecho Operacional Manual FF.MM. 3-41 Público, Primera Edición 2009, Comando General de las Fuerzas Militares, aprobado por el Comandante General de las Fuerzas Armadas por Disposición Número 056, 7 December 2009, p. 146.
Colombia’s Decree No. 138 (2005) states:
The Ministry of National Defence must carry out dissemination programmes through the General Command of the Armed Forces and the National Police and must take pertinent measures in order to include the norms on the protection of the Red Cross emblems and other distinctive emblems in the military and police doctrine. 
Colombia, Decree No. 138, 2005, Article 2; see also Article 14.
In 2010, in the El Iguano case, the Justice and Peace Chamber of Colombia’s High District Court of Bogotá convicted a member of the paramilitary group Autodefensas Unidas de Colombia (United Self-Defence Forces of Colombia) of several crimes committed against the civilian population. The Court stated:
186. The serious harm inflicted upon the civilian population by paramilitary groups in general, and by the Fronteras Front in particular, was executed with knowledge and intent. The issue of respect for IHL was not unknown to the members of these organizations. For example, the Chamber recalls the testimony of … [a] politician from Cacique Pipintá Bloc, who stated that this was precisely one of the topics taught in the [groups’] schools. Moreover, in chapter three, entitled “Political Objectives” of the Statutes of the Constitution and Disciplinary Regime, item 9 states “To disseminate at the level of the military establishment the analysis, knowledge and application of international humanitarian law as an ethical instrument for the conduct of war and to promote the enactment of a local (countrywide) code among the belligerents to humanize the conflict.” 
Colombia, High District Court of Bogotá, El Iguano case, Judgment, 2 December 2010, §§ 186.
A directive issued in 1995 by the Colombian Ministry of National Defence stated, under the heading “Initial measures”, that “to achieve these objectives the Ministry of National Defence has taken the following action: … Training and instruction in human rights and international humanitarian law within the Armed Forces and the National Police are being substantially increased.” 
Colombia, Ministry of National Defence, Permanent Directive No. 024, Development of Government Policy relating to Human Rights and International Humanitarian Law at the Ministry of National Defence, 5 July 1995, Section 3(C)(5).
The directive further stated:
The Armed Forces and the National Police shall draw up, by 30 September 1995, a national programme of training and instruction in human rights and international humanitarian law for all their members, for civilian personnel attached to them and for military Judge Advocates, in coordination with the Human Rights Secretariat of this Ministry. 
Colombia, Ministry of National Defence, Permanent Directive No. 024, Development of Government Policy relating to Human Rights and International Humanitarian Law at the Ministry of National Defence, 5 July 1995, Section 4(B)(1).
In addition, the directive stated:
Directors of training schools for the Armed Forces and National Police shall be responsible for the education of their students in human rights and international humanitarian law and shall conduct all the activities necessary for implementation of the national training programme referred to in [Section 4(B)(1) above]. 
Colombia, Ministry of National Defence, Permanent Directive No. 024, Development of Government Policy relating to Human Rights and International Humanitarian Law at the Ministry of National Defence, 5 July 1995, Section 4(C)(4).
In 2004, in its third periodic report to the Committee on the Rights of the Child, Colombia stated:
As far as the role of the armed forces is concerned, their commitment to uphold human rights and international humanitarian law has been acknowledged. Consequently, the Government has taken educational, preventive and disciplinary measures that have led to improvements in the behaviour of agents of the State towards citizens. Training in this area has been decisive in improving the military’s performance of its tasks. Colombia is the leader in this field in Latin America: over 120,000 members of the public security forces have received special training in this topic in the last five years. 
Colombia, Third periodic report to the Committee on the Rights of the Child, 24 August 2005, UN Doc. CRC/C/Add.129, submitted 28 June 2004, § 122.
In 2006, Colombia’s National Council for Social and Economic Policy approved the Policy for Combating Impunity for Human Rights Violations and Breaches of International Humanitarian Law by Strengthening the Capacity of the Colombian State for Investigation, Prosecution and Punishment. The Policy states:
With regard to human rights training, the Public [Security] Forces have been providing ongoing instruction and training to ensure their members’ full respect for human rights and international humanitarian law. The result has been a significant reduction in the number of complaints regarding violations and breaches [of these rules]. 
Colombia, National Planning Department, National Council for Social and Economic Policy, Policy for Combating Impunity for Human Rights Violations and Breaches of International Humanitarian Law by Strengthening the Capacity of the Colombian State for Investigation, Prosecution and Punishment, CONPES Document No. 3411 of 2006, 6 March 2006, pp. 4–5.
In 2006, the Government of Colombia stated before the Committee against Torture:
The soldiers undergo training in the region’s Army battalions and in the Navy’s marine infantry training bases for a period of 10 weeks, during which they are trained to protect their districts, special emphasis being placed … on respect for human rights and international humanitarian law. 
Colombia, Comments on the conclusions and recommendations of the Committee against Torture, 13 June 2006, UN Doc. CAT/C/COL/CO/3/Add.1, § 14.
In 2008, in its Comprehensive Human Rights and IHL Policy, the Ministry of National Defence of Colombia stated:
10. … [T]he Ministry of Defence has introduced over the last 15 years a training and monitoring system in human rights and IHL that is probably unique in the world: there are currently 208 Human Rights and IHL Offices within the National Security Forces, 161 within military units and 47 within the National Police. The system is headed by a new Human Rights Directorate within the Ministry of Defence, which is responsible for the strategic management of the entire system. In 2007, 108,953 men and women from the National Security Forces received further training in human rights and IHL at workshops and seminars, in addition to that given at training schools, on promotion courses and during periods of retraining. The integration of human rights and IHL into military doctrine, as well as the dissemination and increased knowledge of human rights and IHL throughout the National Security Forces, are the foundation on which respect for human rights and IHL is built..
Appropriate instruction and training
26. It is clear that the demands placed on members of the National Security Forces by the consolidation process are enormous: hence the need for appropriate instruction and training, so that each soldier and police officer has a solid basis of knowledge and training to enable them to make with certainty the immediate decisions that they are frequently obliged to make. There are three aspects of appropriate instruction and training:
- grading, so that every member of the National Security Forces receives the instruction required by his rank and responsibilities, on the understanding that knowledge of the human rights and IHL framework forms an essential part of the responsibilities of command;
- applicability, so that instruction in human rights and IHL is as far as possible tailored to the practical situations likely to be encountered and is fully applicable during the course of normal military and police activities; and
- across-the-board provision (“mainstreaming”), so that the principles of human rights and IHL are incorporated at every level of instruction (initial and further training), equipment (means of combat), doctrine (manuals and regulations) and throughout the process of planning, conducting, monitoring and evaluating operations.
II. OBJECTIVES
54. The Comprehensive Policy has five strategic objectives:
- To tailor education, instruction and training in human rights and IHL to the needs of the strategic context;
III. LINES OF ACTION
TRAINING
56. Formal instruction in human rights and IHL within the National Security Forces has a long history, dating back to at least 1992, when the Armed Forces High Command implemented an “Ongoing Plan for the Integration of International Human Rights Law and IHL”. This document incorporated a proposal from the ICRC to reinforce, develop and extend the process of integration of these subjects which had already been started. With Directive 800-04 of 2003, the Plan was progressively introduced into military doctrine and academic curriculums of the Military Training Schools, applying practical methodology and an operational approach based on close links between theory and practice and graded curricula designed for different levels.
57. The efforts made by the Armed Forces High Command and the National Police and the results achieved mean that considerable progress has been made with the protection of human rights. However, national and international evaluations of the training processes and instruction programmes used by the National Security Forces have revealed the need to continue working to build bridges between theory and practice. With this aim in view, the Ministry of Defence has begun a process of reforming the education and training system, bringing in measures to promote better assimilation of human rights and IHL, making courses less complex at the lower levels and encouraging links between training and operational practice. The line of action concerned with “Training” includes the following strategies:
- Strategic Plan for the Training System (PESE): This is intended to pass on institutional values and principles and to promote military and police ethics and discipline to assist in the full assimilation and integration of human rights and compliance with IHL by all members of the National Security Forces.
- Single Teaching Model (MUP): An educational programme for the National Security Forces consisting of six levels, in which training is graded according to operational needs and levels of responsibility, using practice-based methodology. At the same time, it standardizes the teaching programmes and the training of instructors and teachers in all the Armed Forces.
- Regional Scenarios Training Group (GEPER): Systemic simulation methods for operational training through the creation of training scenarios based on real situations, in which tactical training is combined with instruction in human rights and IHL.
- Lessons Learned: Evaluation of the results of human rights and IHL training during operations in order to identify successes and failures and to implement any corrective measures which may be necessary.
- Situation-based training workshops: Specialized training workshops for the National Security Forces covering human rights, IHL and Operational Law topics depending on particular scenarios and operational needs.
Strategic Plan for the Training System (PESE)
60. The PESE has taken as its main objective to train better human beings, based on a profound understanding of the principles, values and virtues in which the National Security Forces believe. With regard to human rights and IHL, the PESE aims to ensure that its educational and training processes will lead to their thorough assimilation, placing particular emphasis on institutional values and military and police ethics. The aim is to ensure that the National Security Forces are made up of men and women of unswerving military and police spirit, example[s] of ethical values and virtues.
Single Teaching Model (MUP)
62. Following the detailed evaluation of the state of teaching programmes and the review of theoretical and operational manuals, the Armed Forces High Command proposed the Ongoing Plan for the Integration of International Human Rights and IHL. From the Plan, the Single Teaching Model (Modelo Único Pedagógico: MUP) was produced in the form of practical instruction for operational training.
63. The aim of the MUP is to incorporate the rules of human rights and IHL into the subjects taught at every level according to rank or responsibilities, through its gradual adoption within the different training schools. Appropriate training programmes and the incorporation of these rules and principles into manuals and regulations will provide guidance for members of the Armed Forces to assist them in taking operational decisions which comply with the rules of human rights and IHL. In this way, the MUP will operate under the following guidelines:
- First, six levels will be established for human rights and IHL training at the different Armed Forces schools, which will apply in the same way to the curricula at training schools and instruction, practical training and retraining centers.
- The six levels will range from the most basic and practical to the most specialized and theoretical. Whilst private soldiers will be trained at the first and second levels and will concentrate on learning simple and concise rules of engagement, NCOs and subalterns will be trained at the third level and more senior officers will be trained at the fourth and fifth levels, learning in depth about human rights and IHL, the theoretical debates concerning them and national and international jurisprudence on the subject.
- Training for commanding officers will be based on simple checklists to ensure protection of human rights and compliance with the rules of IHL in the conduct of operations. These are lists setting out clear rules for the planning, conduct, execution and evaluation of operations. This will ensure compliance with the basic principles of IHL, clarify the tactical circumstances under which it applies and make them aware of the consequences of failure to apply it.
- The sixth level will offer officers, NCOs or civilians acting as Operational Legal Advisors the opportunity to specialize in IHL and human rights.
- In addition, the MUP is intended to unify and standardize the quality of teaching personnel and the content of the different curricula in all the Armed Forces. To this end, a body of teachers and instructors (civilians and active and retired military personnel) will be set up, for whom a separate Service List will be created.
- The MUP contains special programmes for training instructors in teaching methods, especially with regard to human rights and IHL. To this end, a Center for Training Armed Forces Instructors in human rights and IHL will be set up and, in this way, greater control will be exercised over the level of training provided for trainers and instructors and the quality of training they provide.
- In order to ensure that training processes at all levels and within all the services are consistent, the content of training courses within the different Armed Forces will continue to be standardized. To do this, the MUP will link course contents and methodologies with operational manuals, prepare standardized lesson plans and provide separate instruction in human rights and IHL.
- In the same way, extra-curricular training will continue to be provided by means of specialist qualifications, seminars and courses at various universities and national and international institutes.
Regional Scenarios Training Group (GEPER)
64. In line with their concern to develop innovative instruction methods with a high practical content –“learning by doing”–, in 1999 the Armed Forces set up the first practical training facility at the Tolemaida Base, to train the Army in human rights and IHL. Through the realistic simulation of risk situations likely to be encountered in the field, the facility enables training to be given through experience and lessons learned which will encourage assimilation of human rights principles and an instinctive respect for the rules of IHL. Since the construction of the first facility, each of the Armed Forces has replicated this methodology and today there are more than 35 human rights training facilities in the country.
65. The system of human rights and IHL training facilities will be reinforced at all the Training Schools and the Instruction and Training Centers. They will be coordinated by the Regional Scenarios Training Group (Grupo de Entrenamiento por Escenarios Regionales: GEPER), a body which, based on comparative experience from similar training in the Armed Forces, will be set up as part of this Comprehensive Policy.
66. The GEPER’s mission will be to direct and run operational exercises for the training and retraining of troops and squads which will be going on tactical missions. Its purpose is to provide officers, NCOs and troops with the tools to deal with situations in which there is a risk of human rights abuses or breaches of IHL depending on the particular regional problems and, at the same time, to train them in operational tactics, methods and procedures to enable them to apply the ROE correctly.
69. In selecting the regional scenarios, account will be taken of the particular features of the different environments in which the National Security Forces operate and the threat levels, in order to determine the use of force and to tailor the training to the rules of engagement. It is one thing to operate in the depth of the jungle or up in the mountains and quite another to operate amongst the people in urban areas.
70. Before returning to their operational duties, groups who have undergone instruction at the GEPER will have to do a final confirmation test. This will consist of carrying out a mission in the simulated regional scenario in order to assess whether the group members are operationally ready, whether they have assimilated the rules of engagement for that operation and whether they are aware of and are capable of overcoming the potential risks of human rights abuses and breaches of IHL.
Situation-based Training Workshops
75. In addition to training provided by the Armed Forces High Command and the National Directorate for the Police, the Ministry of Defence holds Situation-based Training Workshops in different regions of the country in order to reinforce training in human rights and IHL within the National Security Forces, in accordance with the needs of the situation on the ground. Between 2003 and 2007, 40 regional human rights workshops were held, focusing on protection of groups requiring special consideration in towns such as Valledupar, Santa Marta, Montería, Leticia, Popayán, Manizales, Riohacha, Puerto Carreño, Buenaventura, Quibdó, Cúcuta, Arauca, Pasto, Ibagué, Inírida, San Andrés, Carepa, Coveñas, Villavicencio, Bahía Málaga and Ipiales.
76. Similarly, since 2001, 14 workshops have been held with the collaboration of the US Southern Command on various operational topics relevant to the protection of human rights and the rules of IHL, such as protection of journalists, terrorism, rules of engagement and operational legal advisors.
77. To supplement this strategy, in Directive No. 8 of May 16th 2007, the Ministry of Defence authorized the organization of 11 workshops in 2007, which were held at the Army and Navy Instruction and Training Centers to assist in translating human rights and IHL into operational reality. What this does is provide for discussion of both legal and operational topics of vital importance to the effective protection of human rights and compliance with the rules of IHL on the part of the National Security Forces. 
Colombia, Ministry of National Defence, Comprehensive Human Rights and IHL Policy, January 2008, §§ 10, 26, 54, 56–57, 60, 62–66, 69–70 and 75–77.
In 2008, in its fourth periodic report to the Committee against Torture, Colombia stated:
138. … [W]ork has been done on such lines of action as training in the application of IHL to the medical profession for military and health personnel … in respect of the relevant rights, duties, obligations and rules protecting the exercise of the medical profession …
C. Human rights training in the Armed Forces
306. With regard to human rights training, the public security forces have issued instructions and provided ongoing training to ensure their members’ full respect for human rights and IHL. The result has been a significant reduction in the number of complaints for such violations and offences. According to data provided by the Office of the Ombudsman, the number of cases involving human rights and IHL violations in 2005 was, respectively, 19 and 39 per cent lower than in 2002. The Government has reiterated its commitment to investigating and punishing the violations in question.
307. The signature of a cooperation agreement between the Ministry of National Defence and OHCHR on 8 November 2005 has been a significant step.
308. This agreement is part of the commitments made by Colombia in response to a statement made in April of that year by the chair of the now extinct United Nations Commission on Human Rights and complies with one of the 27 recommendations formulated with regard to Colombia in the recent reports of UNHCHR.
309. That recommendation urged the “Ministry of Defence to develop, on the basis of an independent study, comprehensively, systematically and operationally, human rights and IHL in the training of all members of public security forces”.
310. The study conducted under the agreement addressed the following thematic areas:
(a) Human rights and IHL education and training: Cross-cutting introduction of human rights and IHL in the training of the public security forces at all levels;
(b) Prevention and protection: Human rights and the IHL mainstreaming into all instructions, orders, activities and operations effectuated by the public security forces under their constitutional mandate.
311. In 2006, the Ministry of Defence conducted seven workshops, several with UNHCHR participation, for all public security forces staff, with a view to providing training in the prevention of violations, the protection of human rights and behaviour compatible with IHL as part of the officers’ constitutional mission. Ministerial guideline No. 08 of 2007, relating to the Plan for strengthening human rights and IHL education for the public security forces, has aimed at reinforcing the culture of respect for human rights and compliance with IHL within those units through the development of officially institutionalized spaces of interaction between the officers and the community that they serve.
312. Efforts are made to strengthen the systematic mainstreaming of IHL provisions into the planning, implementation and conduct of all military and police operations.
313. To that end, 11 workshops, to be held in the main training centres of the public security forces in 2007, were planned for all levels of military and police personnel.
VII. CONCLUSIONS
352. The Government has been consistently working on human-rights and international humanitarian law (IHL) teaching and training for the public security forces in order to ensure that their activities are based on respect for and compliance with the relevant principles and rules.
353. Accordingly, it has been proposed that the Minister of Defence should play a leading role in formulating a single comprehensive policy comprising all relevant activities of the Armed Forces and aimed at the following objectives: ensuring the protection of the human rights of civilians, direct participants in the hostilities and Armed Forces members; enhancing the legitimacy and credibility of the public security forces; mainstreaming human rights concepts into operational practice; building institutional and judicial controls in order to prevent and punish human rights violations and to promote inter-agency cooperation in that area. These objectives are to be pursued through activities promoting education and values, comprehensive and practical training in IHL. 
Colombia, Fourth periodic report to the Committee against Torture, 21 February 2008, UN Doc. CAT/C/COL/4, submitted on 21 January 2008, §§ 138, 306–313 and 352–353.
[footnote in original omitted]
In 2008, in its initial report to the Committee on the Rights of the Child under the Optional Protocol on the Involvement of Children in Armed Conflict, Colombia stated:
The [2000] Optional Protocol [on the Involvement of Children in Armed Conflict] has been widely disseminated within the armed forces with the help of a number of tools, including the websites of the various branches of the military. Special bulletins and articles on the Protocol are posted on these sites, particularly on its anniversaries. Moreover, the protection of children and their rights is part of the Ministry of Defence’s human rights strategy and is covered in the training courses offered by military academies. 
Colombia, Initial report to the Committee on the Rights of the Child under the Optional Protocol on the Involvement of Children in Armed Conflict, 21 October 2009, UN Doc. CRC/C/OPAC/COL/1, submitted 24 September 2008, § 187.
In 2008, in its sixth periodic report to the Human Rights Committee, Colombia stated:
7. Government policy on human rights
90. A noteworthy development in early 2008 is the launch of an ambitious Comprehensive Policy on Human Rights and International Humanitarian Law by the Ministry of National Defence, an effort that, among other things, provides for the regulation of the use of force in war through legitimacy and effectiveness in accordance with General Comment No. 12 of the Human Rights Committee on the right to self-determination.
91. The Comprehensive Policy describes guidelines, sets goals and establishes programmes in human rights and international humanitarian law that should be understood and pursued by the Armed Forces and, when appropriate, by the National Police. It is the road map that lays out the behaviour of the security forces in the conduct of their operations.
92. The Comprehensive Policy serves … [the following] purposes: to articulate the educational system of human rights and international humanitarian law which has been implemented by the Ministry of National Defence for over a decade; [and] to adapt methods of instruction in human rights and international humanitarian law to the needs of the security forces in the current context …
F. Article 6. Right to life
258. … [T]he national Government, through the Ministry of National Defence, is making enormous efforts to ensure that members of the security forces are trained and adhere strictly to the principles of legality, protection, necessity and proportionality when confronting criminals. The international law of human rights and international humanitarian law have been incorporated into the training programmes and doctrine of the armed forces and National Police. Concrete evidence of this approach may be seen in the Comprehensive Policy of Human Rights and International Humanitarian Law of the Ministry of Defence that was formed in February 2008 before the national and international community (see General Comment No. 12 of the Human Rights Committee).
G. Article 7. Prohibition of torture and cruel, inhuman or degrading treatment or punishment
286. On the issue of human rights training, the security forces have issued instructions and provided ongoing training to all their members to act with full respect for human rights and international humanitarian law …
I. Article 9. Right to liberty and security of person, guarantee against arbitrary arrest
334. Regarding the issue of arbitrary detentions, a noteworthy preventive measure is training in human rights and international humanitarian law for the security forces by the national Government through the Ministry of Defence. Similarly, the Ombudsman and the Office of the Attorney General perform ongoing oversight aimed at preventing illegal actions of State agents.
335. Of particular note are the efforts at awareness-raising with regard to the law and respect for freedom conducted by the Ombudsman for police officers and other police personnel. 
Colombia, Sixth periodic report to the Human Rights Committee, 2 June 2009, UN Doc. CCPR/C/COL/6, submitted 10 December 2008, §§ 90–92, 258, 286 and 334–335.
In 2009, in their National Plan for Human Rights Education, the Ministry of National Education, Ombudsman’s Office of Colombia and the Presidential Program for Human Rights and International Humanitarian Law of Colombia stated:
International standards
Firstly, it is necessary to affirm that States have the obligation to provide human rights education, pursuant to the rules of international human rights law (IHRL) and international humanitarian law (IHL) relating to the protection of human rights. …
These obligations derive, among others, from the following international legal instruments on human rights and international humanitarian law:
- International humanitarian law
The four 1949 Geneva Conventions (which entered into force for Colombia in May 1961 and were approved by Congress through Law No. 5 of 1960), in articles 47, 48, 127 and 144, respectively, oblige States to incorporate the teaching of international humanitarian law (IHL) into their military, and if possible civilian, training programmes. The same international [obligation] of States was reiterated in article 83 of the 1977 Protocol I and article 19 of the 1977 Protocol II additional to the four Geneva Conventions of 1949. Therefore, the 192 States Parties to the 1949 Geneva Conventions have undertaken to ensure that the rules of IHL are known to the population as a whole and that their military commanders, especially those responsible for protecting and assisting victims of war and armed conflict, are aware of and apply the rules of IHL. 
Colombia, Ministry of National Education, the Ombudsman’s Office of Colombia and the Presidential Program for Human Rights and International Humanitarian Law, National Plan for Human Rights Education – PLANEDH, 23 November 2009, pp. 15, 16 and 22.
[footnote in original omitted]
The Plan also states:
In view of the conditions in the country, the human rights education process also includes education in IHL, which regulates armed conflicts. This training is … essential for the activities of the national armed forces[.] 
Colombia, Ministry of National Education, the Ombudsman’s Office of Colombia and the Presidential Program for Human Rights and International Humanitarian Law, National Plan for Human Rights Education – PLANEDH, 23 November 2009, p. 87.
The Plan further states:
[T]he Ministry of National Defence recently issued the “Comprehensive Human Rights and International Humanitarian Law Policy”, which describes the guidelines, objectives and foundations of human rights and international humanitarian law training and establishes the programmes that the armed forces must be familiar with and develop in these areas. This is the roadmap that frames the Public [Security] Forces’ conduct in their operations. 
Colombia, Ministry of National Education, the Ombudsman’s Office of Colombia and the Presidential Program for Human Rights and International Humanitarian Law, National Plan for Human Rights Education – PLANEDH, 23 November 2009, p. 43.
Colombia’s Directive on IHL (1993) states:
The Ministry of National Defence gives instructions aimed at intensifying the development of capacity-building programmes of the members of the public force, on themes referring to respect for Human Rights and the application of the rules of International Humanitarian Law, with the view to prevent and correct conduct which violates those rules …
The General Command of the Military Forces and the Directorate of the National Police [g]ive the commanders of the public force the necessary instructions for each force to intensify, develop and complete, in the corresponding courses of training and capacity-building of their personnel, the relevant studies on respect for Human Rights and ensure the obligatory application of International Humanitarian Law. 
Colombia, Normas de Derecho Internacional Humanitario, Directiva Permanente No. 017, Ministerio de Defensa Nacional, 17 August 1993, Sections IV.(A) and IV.(B)(1).
Colombia’s Soldiers’ Manual (1999) states that it is useful for commanders, especially officers in charge of the instruction of troops, to be able to “count on an efficient instrument of practical and daily use to educate and train Colombian soldiers”. 
Colombia, Derechos Humanos & Derecho Internacional Humanitario – Guía de Conducta para el Soldado e Infante de Marina, Ministerio de Defensa Nacional, Oficina de Derechos Humanos, Fuerzas Militares de Colombia, Santafé de Bogotá, 1999, p. i.
Colombia’s Operational Law Manual (2009) states:
Commanders at every level must ensure that before an operation or mission is initiated, their subordinates are briefed in an appropriate, clear and simple manner on the meaning and application of the rules of engagement.
To this end, he or she must ensure that:
(i) the rules are known, understood, learned and correctly applied[.] 
Colombia, Manual de Derecho Operacional Manual FF.MM. 3-41 Público, Primera Edición 2009, Comando General de las Fuerzas Militares, aprobado por el Comandante General de las Fuerzas Armadas por Disposición Número 056, 7 December 2009, p. 112.