Author: Andrea Fernández Aponte
The Colombian government and the FARC guerrillas just reached a final peace accord that, if approved by the Colombian people on October 2, will put an end to the longest running conflict in the Western Hemisphere. Together, we’ve welcomed peace in Colombia. Now, we’re asking Congress to do the same.
Despite the success at the negotiating table, significant challenges remain. FARC rebels must be reintegrated into society and combatants on all sides will be subject to a lengthy truth and reconciliation process. Moreover, there’s much to be done to ensure that the victims of violence have real access to truth, justice, and reparations. At this critical moment, the United States needs to expressly support the proper implementation and monitoring of the accords.
Rep. Ruben Gallego, the first Colombian-American member of Congress, is circulating a letter in the House this week calling on members to come together to ensure that the U.S. government, which backed this brutal war, is now committed to helping Colombia secure peace. Can you take five minutes today to contact your member of the House to sign on to this letter?
This timely letter encourages “[the Colombian] government and all relevant parties to ensure that [the accord] is carried out in a manner that promotes the rights of victims of all armed actors and honors their demands for truth and justice,” and emphasizes the “inclusion of provisions on Afro-Colombian and indigenous rights and urge[s] their full implementation.”
Your representatives only have until Monday, September 26 to sign on. Click here to call or email now>>
The human costs of the Colombian conflict have been devastating. More than 220,000 people—over 80 percent of whom were civilians—lost their lives in the brutal war. Over the course of the conflict, more than 6 million Colombians were forcibly displaced, more than 45,000 were disappeared, and countless women suffered sexual violence that often went unrecognized. We must ensure that this violent past is never repeated. Are you in?
Tell Congress to say “YES” to peace in Colombia—Click here to contact your representative!