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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.
Learn more here.
August 31, 2017
excessive force by police and ESMAD (anti-riot squad) against small-scale artisanal miners in Antioquia Department organizing in resistance to Canada-based Gran Colombia Gold Corporation; two killed by police gunfire: Brando Stid Ochoa, Alexis Gregorio Acevedo
August 25, 2017
threats and intimidation against several human rights defenders and organizations in Barrancabermeja, Santander Department, by the paramilitary organization Gaitanista Self-Defense Forces (AGC): Iván Madero Vergel, President of the Regional Corporation for the Protection of Human Rights (CREDHOS); David Ravelo Crespo, Secretary of CREDHOS; Maria Leonilda Ravelo Grimaldo, President of the National Association for Solidarity Aid (ANDAS); Sonia María Nevado Morales, member of Broad Front for Peace; Melkin Hernán Castrillón Peñau, Treasurer of the Peasant Farmer Association of the Cimitarra River Valley (ACVC)
August 23, 2017
death threats and cyber attacks directed at the staff of news agency Análisis Urbano (Urban Analysis) and Corpades (Corporation for Peace and Social Development) after reporting on alliances between paramilitary groups and politicians in Medellín and corruption involving the former mayor of Zaragoza, Antioquia Department.
August 22, 2017
death threats in Bogotá against documentary filmmaker Bladimir Sánchez Espitia, who investigates mining companies, local police, or political figures that may have interests in those companies or their development projects.
August 21, 2017
Wounaan indigenous communities in Chocó Department impacted by violent clashes between paramilitary groups, the rebel group National Liberation Army (ELN), and state security forces; Sebastían Carpio Necheche was seriously wounded when an anti-personnel mine exploded.
August 11, 2017
Enjoy Live Music. Poetry. Refreshments (Fair Trade of course). Hear updates from IRTF staff who have recently traveled to Colombia, Honduras, and Nicaragua.
June 15, 2017 to June 24, 2017
Travel with IRTF on a delegation to Colombia with Christian Peacemaker Teams(CPT)
June 22, 2017
assassination in Atlántico Department of Bernardo Cuero Bravo, attorney for AFRODES, the National Association of Displaced Afro-descendants, a coalition of 96 internally displaced Afro-Colombian organizations
May 26, 2017
police repression and injuries to the mostly Afro-descendant residents of Buenaventura in Valle del Cauca Department during a general strike and other protests for health, education, water and sanitation
May 23, 2017
Raids by Gaitanista paramilitaries threaten the mostly indigenous and Afro-descendant communities of the Jiguamiandó River Basin collective territory in Chocó Dept., near Pueblo Nuevo Humanitarian Zone (an official demilitarized safety zone)