Working for human rights in Colombia is no easy task. But, recent news from that war-torn country gives us hope. Last month, the Colombian government announced peace talks with the FARC, Colombia’s largest guerilla group, to negotiate an end to the five-decades-old conflict. As the peace process begins next week on October 17th, we want to know: what does peace in Colombia mean to you?
As a first step in supporting the peace process, post a message or picture on our facebook page telling us what peace in Colombia means to you!
Don’t have a facebook page? Send your message to Omar Martinez (firstname.lastname@example.org) via email.
Thousands of Colombians took to the streets to support the peace process this past Monday. The mobilization was part of the “semana de la indignación por la paz,” or “week of outrage for peace.” Bringing together victims of violence, workers, campesinos, students, intellectuals, women, indigenous and Afro-descendents, this week of mobilization aims to promote a peace process that includes a social and human rights agenda. During the week’s events, Colombians expressed their support for peace and their “outrage” over the human costs of the war: forced displacements, widespread massacres, threats against unionists and human rights activists, and the exclusion of indigenous and Afro-descendant communities. This week seeks to encourage civil society’s inclusion in the peace process by promoting an open discussion on a wide range of issues, from health care and education to justice and land reform. It’s a week of outrage against the war, with Colombians coming together in the hope of peace.
Here at the LAWG, we believe that in building a just and lasting peace, the underlying human rights, economic and social aspects of the conflict must be addressed. This means addressing human rights violations by all parties to the conflict and a space for civil society participation in the peace process. A space where the concerns of all those affected by 50 years of war can be addressed to bring peace with justice for all Colombians.