AMERICA/COLOMBIA - Week for Peace while a revival of armed conflict is feared

Tuesday, 3 September 2019 peace   armed groups   paramilitary groups   local churches  


Bogota (Agenzia Fides) - The 32nd edition of the "Week for Peace" has opened in Colombia, an initiative that seeks to make the efforts of many Colombians working to build a country of peace and reconciliation visible. "I am and we are territories of peace" is the motto chosen for this year by the organizing committee, consisting of: National Secretariat of Social Pastoral/Cáritas Colombia, National Network of Initiatives for Citizens for Peace - Redepaz, Center for Popular Research and Education/Peace Program - CINEP/PPP and Pontificia Universidad Javeriana - PUJ.
The many activities that will be carried out in different cities and municipalities of Colombia have the same objective: to make peace ... On this occasion, focusing on those territories that despite the violence have resisted and have respected their communities. "The persistent threat situation, indictment and murder of social leaders, political and legislative obstacles to the implementation of peace agreements, political exit from the armed conflict and the possibilities so far closed to advance negotiations with ELN, the electoral situation and the international context, are the main themes on which this year's edition is articulated", reads the note sent to Fides.
Among the main activities that will take place from September 2nd to 9th there is the collection of one million signatures in the main squares of the country so that all the victims of the armed struggle are recognized; also in Antioquia, Bogotá, Boyacá, Bolívar, Córdoba, Cundinamarca, La Guajira, Meta, Nariño, Putumayo, Quindío and Valle del Cauca there will be events on the subject.
The program proposed by Colombian Caritas is vast, the first responsible for the Week for Peace: 500 territorial symbolic and pedagogical actions: Monday 2 September; 50 simultaneous film clubs: Tuesday 3 September; National Award for Human Rights: Wednesday 4 September; Simultaneous national declaration of at least 1000 territories of peace: Thursday 5 September; National symbolic day for life and peace: Friday 6 September; Installation of territorial humanitarian shelters: from 3 to 9 September; Planting of trees and installation of gardens in the territories of peace: Sunday 8 September; National Human Rights Day: Monday 9 September.
The Week for Peace falls at a very delicate moment for the nation: in recent days in fact there is news of the "return to arms" of some dissident of the Fuerzas armadas revolucionarias de Colombia (Farc). "We announce the beginning of a new phase of struggle in the face of the betrayal of peace" announces Luciano Marin, better known as Iván Márquez, who appears with an olive-green military uniform in the 32-minute message filmed along the border with Venezuela and released on YouTube. He is no longer the chief negotiator who led the Farc delegation to Havana for peace negotiations, nor the senator who, one and a half years ago, obtained one of the ten seats for the party born thanks to the agreement: Fuerza alternative revolucionary del común (Farc). The identity of acronyms is not a coincidence: the founders - including Márquez himself - wanted to emphasize the continuity between the guerrilla and political formation. (CE) (Agenzia Fides, 3/9/2019)