Press

25/07/2021


By Alexandra Díaz



The purpose of the Comprehensive System of Truth, Justice, Reparation, and Non-Repetition is to consolidate a transitory or temporary institutional framework, sufficient and adequate to satisfy the rights of the victims of the armed conflict and contribute to national reconciliation.


It is made of the following branches:

  1. The Truth Commission,
  2. The Unit for the Search for Persons Presumed Disappeared,
  3. The Special Jurisdiction for Peace.


These branches that make up the system must work in a joint and coordinated manner with a territorial, differential, and gender focus.


Learn about some of their goals:

  • Fulfill the rights of the victims of the Colombian armed conflict.
  • Seek recognition of the responsibilities of those who participated in the internal armed conflict directly or indirectly.
  • Guarantee justice for serious Human Rights violations and violations of International Humanitarian Law.


No component of the System prevails over another and each mechanism fulfills its function without duplicating those of the others, for which there are collaboration protocols and an Inter-branches Coordination Committee.


Soon we will bring you more information about everything you need to know about the Truth Commission, the Unit for the Search for Persons Presumed Disappeared, and the Special Jurisdiction for Peace!


20/07/2021


By Alexandra Díaz



Since 2003, the Reincorporation and Normalization Agency accompanies and provides permanent advice to those who are committed to peace and want to make the transition to legality, generating opportunities that strengthen their capacities to be able to function fully as citizens. 


It has a presence throughout the country through 3 processes: 

  1. Reintegration process 
  2. Special reintegration process 
  3. Reincorporation process 


The Reintegration Process is aimed at people who have demobilized individually or collectively from paramilitary groups and guerrilla organizations. 

25 thousand people in the reintegration process have completed their transition to civil life. 


The Special Reintegration Process is aimed at demobilized people nominated for the justice and peace law, who, after serving a sentence of between 5 and 8 years in prison, make the transition to legality, contribute to the truth, justice, and reparation; and they promote the non-repetition of violent acts. 

1,000 applicants meet the requirements of the agency


The Reincorporation Process is aimed at people who laid down their weapons in the framework of the Final Peace Agreement and became civilians. 

A Reincorporation Route has been agreed that determines for the next few years the social and economic guarantees and the opportunities for progress for some 13,000 former members of the FARC-EP.

19/07/2021

We invite you to watch:

“Fragmentos” (2020)

By: Doris Salcedo (Executive Director) 


Fragmentos (fragments) recounts the process of making the monument that bears the same name: “Fragments”, made with 37 tons of weapons voluntarily surrendered by the former guerrilla FARC-EP, as part of the commitments in the framework of the peace agreement. 


Trailer, subtitled:










Full documentary (22 min, subtitled):

18/07/2021

We invite you to listen to this playlist created by Angelica Castro. There you can find several songs about protesting in Colombia.

18/07/2021


By Alexandra Díaz



The Special Transitory Circumscriptions of Peace were created in point 2.3.6 of the Peace Agreement signed in 2016 between the Government of Colombia and the FARC guerrilla. Its purpose is to give political representation in the House of Representatives to the victims of violence from the armed conflict. 


Myth: The circumscriptions are made to favor illegal armed groups in the peripheral territories of the country. 

Truth: They are designed to give political representation to the victims of violence, who inhabit the territories most affected by the armed conflict, and to restore the full exercise of their political, economic, social, cultural, and environmental rights. 


Myth: The circumscriptions are permanent

Truth: They are temporary (they will only work for two periods). 


Myth: Any political party or movement that already has representation in the Congress of the Republic or with a legal entity status can participate in the Special Transitory Circumscriptions of Peace. 

Truth: Neither parties nor movements with representation in Congress or with legal entity status can nominate candidates for this constituency. 


The figure of special circumscriptions is not an exclusive creation of the Peace Agreement. They already exist for black and indigenous communities. The innovation is their assignment to communities affected by armed conflict.

29/06/2021

By Leslye Dias


It is a regional agreement between Latin American and Caribbean countries that was born at the United Nations Conference on Sustainable Development in 2012. The agreement is motivated as an instrument that materializes Principle 10 of the 1992 Rio Declaration, which seeks to strengthen environmental democracy, and its three constitutive rights: information, participation, and justice in environmental matters.


Fundamentally, the agreement acts as a legal tool for the protection of the environment. But it is also a treaty of the Economic Commission for Latin America and the Caribbean (CEPAL) on human rights. Its main beneficiaries are the population of the Latin American and Caribbean regions, in particular the most vulnerable groups and communities, including activists who defend the environment. Its objective is to guarantee the right of people to access competent information in a timely manner, to participate in a meaningful way in decisions that affect their lives and their environments - such as deforestation, mining, crop diversification projects, etc., and access to justice in the country, in case these rights have been violated.


According to Alicia Bárcena, executive secretary of the Economic Commission for Latin America and the Caribbean, this agreement has the potential to promote structural change in terms of strengthening environmental institutions and public environmental policies, and thus respond to some of the main challenges of the region. “It is a powerful instrument to prevent conflict, ensure that decisions are made in an informed, participatory and inclusive manner, and improve accountability, transparency and good governance” 1


So far, 12 countries have ratified it: Guyana, Antigua and Barbuda, Bolivia, Ecuador, Nicaragua, Panama, Saint Vincent, and the Grenadines, Saint Kitts and Nevis, Saint Lucia, Uruguay, Argentina, and Mexico.


Colombia signed the agreement but did not ratify it. What does this imply?


In 2019, Colombia decided to join the signatory countries and the government presented the bill to Congress and the Senate with a message of urgency. However, the agreement must be ratified in a mandatory way in the Congress of the Republic and then reviewed in the Constitutional Court, and then it can start to be implemented. However, ratification collapsed on June 20, the last day of the ordinary legislature after 11 months of postponements and delays.


Why is there opposition?


Different business associations in the country consider that Colombia already has sufficient mechanisms for environmental protection and citizen participation in impact projects in this area. For this reason, they fear that the implementation of the agreement will make it even more difficult to obtain environmental licenses, which in turn would limit the social and labor development projects essential for progress.


In addition, the agreement implies supervision and control - in a legally binding manner - of international institutions, which - according to the associations - could pose a risk of diminishing investment, since much of the information, previously confidential, would have to become public.


Who loses if the agreement is not implemented?


The Escazú Agreement contemplates the strengthening of the protection of human rights activists in environmental matters. In Colombia, the situation on this issue is dramatic, since environmental activists have been the target of persecution and repression, even more so after the signing of the Havana peace agreement in 2016. In fact, Colombia is the most dangerous country in the world for environmental activists2.


Therefore, those who lose by not ratifying the agreement are the activists who are dedicated to the conservation of the environment, rural communities, indigenous peoples, and in general, Colombia loses the possibility of implementing a tool with international structuring for a sustainable and egalitarian economic development.


Referencias

1. Acuerdo Regional sobre el Acceso a la Información, la Participación Pública y el Acceso a la Justicia en Asuntos Ambientales en América Latina y el Caribe. Santiago, noviembre 2018. Comisión Económica para América Latina y el Caribe (CEPAL) de las Naciones Unidas, disponible en: https://repositorio.cepal.org/bitstream/handle/11362/43595/1/S1800429_es.pdf

2. Becerra Elejalde, L., López Suárez, A. (08 de octubre de 2020). Efectos del Acuerdo de Escazú en licencias complican su ratificación Portafolio. https://www.portafolio.co/economia/efectos-del-acuerdo-de-escazu-en-licencias-complican-su-ratificacion-546134

3. Global Witness. (2020) Informe: Defender el Mañana: Crisis climática y amenazas contra las personas defensoras de la tierra y del medio ambiente. (Informe nro. 3). ISBN: 978-1-911606-43-7

12/05/2021

Since April 28th 2021, Colombia has gone through an avalanche of protests. 


Please read our most recent Press release on the current situation.

28/02/2021

Last February 27th 2021, OigoPaz had its first event of the year through our Instagram account @Oigo.Paz. There were two incredible interviews with two ventures that contribute to peace in Colombia. Learn more about them in these interviews, and take the opportunity to support these ventures through your purchase or by generating relationships with people who can help them continue to grow!

Because a responsible purchase is a way to say YES to peace in Colombia!

On the one hand, we were with Natalia Amaya representing the brand Ágave & Mulié.


The commercialization of their products made of fique helps to revive a tradition that has been practiced for generations in Pueblo Nuevo, Ocaña, and that had been paused by the siege of the conflict in the region.


In this interview, Natalia tells us more about the company, her relationship with the manufacturers' cooperatives and the role of women; how the armed conflict has affected them and the opportunities that the peace agreement has brought; the challenges they face and her experiences as an entrepreneur.


Check out the interview here!
Learn more about Ágave & Mulié here (spanish)
and follow them on their Instagram @agavemulie


On the other hand, we were with Ángela Herrera representing Manifiesta, a company that commercializes products made by ex-combatants and victims of the armed conflict.


Here, Ángela shares her story as an entrepreneur, her advice for other entrepreneurs, and the challenges they continue to face; the relationships with and between the cooperatives (the manufacturers), as well as their dynamics and policies of production and commercialization; the role of women and their relationships with the community.


If you are interested in volunteering or doing an internship, do not hesitate to contact them!


Check out the interview here
Learn more about Manifiesta here (spanish)
and follow them on their Instagram @manifiesta.col