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Colombia: News & Updates
Colombia has the world's second largest population of internally displaced persons (five million) due to the half-century internal armed conflict—the longest-running war in the Western Hemisphere (since 1964). Control for territory and popular support among the three main groups (left-wing rebel forces FARC & ELN, right-wing paramilitaries, Colombian police/military) has left 220,000 killed, 75% of them non-combatants. Since 2000, the US has exacerbated the violence by sending more than $9 billion in mostly military assistance. Colombia, which has both Pacific and Atlantic coastlines, holds strategic interest for the US for global trade and military posturing.
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September 21, 2020
The increasing push for global militarization directly impacts billions of women and gender nonconforming folks around the world each day. These voices, experiences and perspectives are often silenced when approaching solutions to this crisis. Hear about how militarism is experienced and about the stories of resistance to violence from several communities accompanied by Christian Peacemaker Teams (CPT). CPT and the InterReligious Task Force on Central America & Colombia (IRTF) are partnering to bring several powerful voices together for a live webinar conversation on anti-militarism.
September 4, 2020
Governments all over the world can and must take action right now to reduce the amount of people forcibly displaced because of climate change. According to a United Nation’s Report, we, as a global community, still have a window of opportunity to establish policies and strategies to ameliorate both the issues leading to climate migration and the issues directly caused by climate migration.
September 2, 2020
We have already emitted enough greenhouse gases (GHGs), such as CO2, to change the very composition of our atmosphere. Scientists, researchers, policymakers, and governmental officials alike know this; they know that the effects of climate change are occurring now and will continue into the not-so-distant future. We now face the question: will we act now to limit the consequences of climate change by reducing emissions or continue with the status quo and suffer the consequences?
September 1, 2020
In this series of infographics we explore the ways in which the climate crisis is impacting Central Americans and Colombians, how they are adapting, and how this crisis has created a surge of climate migration.
August 24, 2020
Several armed groups are competing in Nariño for control of land to grow illicit crops, illegal mining, and routes for drug trafficking. In the last four months, at least seven community members and members of the Awá Indigenous Guard have been murdered. On July 28, Fabio Alfonso Guanga García, the second Indigenous governor of the Ñambí Piedra Verde Reservation (in Barbacoas municipality), and his partner Sonia Lorena Bisbicus Ortiz were assassinated. At noon on August 11, six men shot at the truck in which Francisco Cortés Guanga and his two security bodyguards from the National Protection Unit (UNP) were riding. Francisco Cortés Guanga serves the Piguambí Palangala Reservation as human rights spokesperson with UNIPA (Unidad de Pueblos Awá). His father, Segundo Jaime Cortés Pai, governor of the same reservation, had received death threats two weeks prior. Then on August 19, three Awa Indigenous youths were killed in the remote Aguacuate community of Pialapi Pueblo Viejo Reservation (Ricaurte municipality); others are rumored to have been forcibly disappeared.
August 23, 2020
We are outraged at the killing of two Nasa Indigenous men, José Abelardo Liz Cuetia, age 34, and José Ernesto Rivera, on August 13 near Corinto in Cauca Department. The two men were shot and killed during a two-day military and police campaign to forcibly remove members of the Nasa Indigenous group from land that they claim is their ancestral territory. The security forces were deployed to fulfill an eviction order by Martha C. Velasco Guzman, mayor of Corinto, which Nasa leaders characterize as “irresponsible and without prior consult.” Legal ownership of the land is claimed by Incauca sugar refinery, a company owned by Carlos Ardila Lülle, one of the wealthiest entrepreneurs in Colombia. Nasa Indigenous men Julio Cesar Tumbo and Leónidas Perdomo were seriously injured in the attack.
August 22, 2020
Senator Iván Cepeda Castro has been receiving death threats since the Colombia Supreme Court of Justice ordered the house arrest of Ex-President Álvaro Uribe on August 4. In 2012, Senator Cepeda gathered evidence that President Uribe was supporting illegal paramilitary groups in carrying out human rights abuses. In 2018, the Supreme Court began investigating Mr. Uribe for bribery, fraud, and witness tampering. The Court is also trying to determine if one of Mr. Uribe's lawyers, with his consent, paid imprisoned paramilitaries to give testimony favoring the ex-president. Although Mr. Uribe has not yet been formally charged, he is feeling the political impacts of the accusations. He announced on August 18 that he is resigning the Senate seat he has held since 2014. In the meantime, the current president has appeared on national television and insisted that Mr. Uribe is a "genuine patriot" and victim of unjust accusations and defamation. Statements calling for Mr. Uribe’s release from house arrest have been echoed by U.S. Vice-President Mike Pence.
August 20, 2020
ALERT and PETITION for the life of Iván Cepeda Castro, his family, lawyers, and collaborators due to the intensification of death threats and a call for compliance of the Colombian Supreme Court of Justice’s decision.
August 12, 2020
Although the effects of climate change reverberate around the globe, its effects vary from region to region, continent to continent, and Central America is no exception. // Aunque los efectos del cambio climático repercuten en todo el mundo, sus efectos varían de una región a otra y de un continente a otro, y Centroamérica no es una excepción.
August 4, 2020
As we address the climate crisis, it is imperative that we reject capitalist, extractivist, imperialist models of interaction at all levels: interpersonal, national, and international. Join us as we discuss our collective liberation and the end of colonialist corporate control through systems of racism, classism, and patriarchy.