April 2017

CURRENT SITUATION

According to Somos Defensores’ annual report (2016) “Information system about aggressions against human rights defenders in Colombia”, the most worrisome situation has to do with the increasing number of social leaders’ murders. Aggressions reduced of 29% from 2015 to 2016. Notwithstanding, last year were reported 80 cases of murders and 49 cases of harassment of such leaders. In 2017 the situation is not different. According to the platform ¡Pacifista!, the toll of social leaders’ murders is more than 20 cases. Moreover, if we count from the agreement signature it raises at 31. On the 16th of March, The representative of the UN High Commissioner for Human Rights in Colombia, Todd Howland presented the annual report emphasizing the state of warning for the increasing number of attacks against social activists. Mr Howland called on the government to recognise that the deaths formed a pattern and to provide protection to those in danger. Another warning comes from Amnesty International that in its report presented on the 21st of April talks about a worrisome situation related to the wave of homicides of indigenous in areas historically exposed to armed conflict.

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February 2017

CURRENT SITUATION

After two months and a half since the peace agreement was signed by the government and the FARC, the main result is 7000 guerrillas entering the “transitional areas of normalization”. The FARC started to talk about inefficiency of the State, while the government can’t put in practice what they agreed on. The worrisome situation keeps on growing for, as declared by the High commissioner for peace Sergio Jaramillo, most of the peace processes fail after signing, during the implementation stage. Although the international community agrees about the fact that the agreement is one of the most deep and complete, the experience shows that the hardest test for an agreement is the practical implementation. “The quality of a peace agreement is only equal to the quality of its implementation ”, Jean Paul Lederach (university of Notre Dame) said. He added that, according to statistics, the first 18 months are crucial. During this period of time, it is necessary to build the bases in order not to repeat past mistakes.

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January 2017

CURRENT SITUATION

It has been difficult to digest Colombian Ministry of defense Villegas’ words. Last January 11th, in a radio interview he declared: “In Colombia there is no paramilitarism. To say that there is paramilitarism would be to give political recognition to a group of bandits who are dedicated to common and organized crime. There are murders but they are not systematic. If there were, I would be the first to accept it”.
The Colombian National Center of Historical Memory reports that in 339 municipalities out of 1123 there are “illegal armed groups post-demobilization. Those groups are responsible of several human rights violations.

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December 2016

CURRENT SITUATION

During the last Peace Community General Assembly the Jesuit father Javier Giraldo (defender of human rights and accompanier of the Peace Community of San José de Apartadò) explained the new situation in relation to the peace agreement. He talked about the last developments of the peace process in Colombia, and about what has been happening after the signature of the new agreement.

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November 2016

Current situation

In November, the United Nations High Commission for Human Rights has carried out a series of missions on the field to gain more precise information on what is happening in the country, especially in the zones mainly stroke by the armed conflict. In the middle of the month, a bilateral and definitive cease-fire between the Government and the FARC was violated after 80 days it was implemented. The armed conflict costed two deaths to the guerrilla and the fragility of the “shotgun’ silence” is getting more evident, in a contest of total incertitude after the victory of the NO at the referendum.
The other most serious situation, that for months it has been presenting itself to the Country, is the violence perpetrated towards those who defend the rights of the individual, the environment and those who actively participate to that social and political change that the Country is looking for.
Indeed, there are already 70 murders of social leaders and defenders of Human Rights that took place in Colombia during 2016, 279 cases of threats and 28 attacks against these people (the source that provided with this data to the newspaper El Espectador wishes to remain anonymous). The document also points out that 30 of these murders happened after the bilateral and definitive cease-fire between the Government and the FARC.

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