Colombia. According to COUNTRYAAH, Bogota is the capital of Colombia which is located in South America. The regional elections October 25, admittedly, were a success for the Government Coalition National Unity as a whole; the coalition parties won the most governorship elections and 1,102 mayoral elections. At the same time, it was clear that it was not President Juan Manuel Santo’s party Liberal Party (PL) that won most but his Vice President Germán Vargas Lleras Radical change (CR), which increased its number of municipal councils by 18% and is now Colombia’s third largest party. Among other things, the party won five of 32 governor posts and three of the mayor’s posts in the country’s provincial capitals. The mayor’s election in the capital Bogotá was won by Enrique Peñalosa, an autonomous candidate supported by CR. The election result as a whole precluded future cooperation difficulties within the framework of the coalition.
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The elections were largely calm, but already the day after, the guerrilla group ELN (National Liberation Army) struck and killed twelve soldiers who were carrying ballot boxes in the Boyacá province. The peace talks with the largest guerrilla group FARC (Colombia’s Revolutionary Armed Forces), which began in September 2012, took place throughout Havana in Cuba throughout the year. During the negotiations, the FARC announced a unilateral ceasefire, which was, however, rather fragile and repeatedly interrupted, with violence again escalating in a vicious circle. In May, for example, the FARC claimed the ceasefire after the military carried out a bomb attack on a FARC camp in Caucapo Province in the southwest and killed 27 guerrillas. Opinion surveys showed that pessimism among Colombians about a definitive peace agreement is great, while holding peace manifestations,
In a raid in southeastern Colombia in September, one of the country’s most wanted drug kings, Martín “Pijarbey” Farfán Díaz, was killed in the so-called paramilitary forces fighting Colombia’s leftist guerrillas. Just ten days later, in the Catatum Boro region near the Venezuela border, Víctor Ramón “Megateo” Navarro Serrano, a guerrilla leader who was also involved in the cocaine trade, was also killed. A UN report published in early July showed that coca cultivation in the country increased by 44% in 2014, with the most widespread cultivation in the southernmost provinces of Nariño and Putumayo.
In March, the Constitutional Court ended up in its worst corruption scandal since it was created in the 1990s. The chairman of the court, Jorge Ignacio Pretelt, was forced to resign at the urging of the other judges after it was revealed that he demanded large sums from an oil company to withdraw a fine from a lower court.
President Santos was awarded a week after his defeat at the Nobel Peace Prize referendum. There are always at least 2 parties to make peace, but the Nobel Committee openly ignored the counterpart. Civil media speculated that it was “probably because the FARC had violated human rights,” but decades of reports by Amnesty International and Human Rights Watch had clearly documented that the vast majority of human rights violations had been committed by the Colombian state through its “security forces” and death patrols.
A flare-up of the conflict was avoided as the government and the FARC implemented minor changes to some of the sub-agreements. The new peace treaty was not sent for a referendum. The radical right wing, led by President Uribe, declared that it would cancel the agreement once it came to power. The peace process progressed again and the agreement was ratified by Congress in November. Acc. the deal was to assemble partisans in 26 demobilization camps by December 31st. However, the camps were not finished and the deadline was therefore pushed to January 31st. By May 31, the FARC was to be fully disarmed in a UN-supervised process.
However, it quickly became apparent that the peace process did not necessarily bring peace. The power space in the areas previously controlled by the FARC was filled by death patrols and the killings of human rights in particular. and professional activists continued. In December and January 2017 alone, 17 popular leaders were killed. Almost all killings were committed by the military, other security forces or the landlords’ paramilitary groups (death patrols). (Last march of the Farc: Colombia’s hardened fighters reach for a normal life, Guardian3/2 2017). Threats, assassinations and displacement especially affected farmers in northwestern Colombia. Especially from the paramilitary organization Autodefensas Gaitanistas de Colombia (AGC). A group of authorities allegedly no longer existed. Amnesty International director for the American continent, Erika Guevara-Rosas stated: “It is alarming that the armed conflict is as alive in large parts of Colombia as it has always been. Hundreds of thousands of people across the country have yet to see any improvement in their lives after the peace agreement was signed ». Over 6 million Colombians continued to flee, internally displaced or in camps outside Colombia’s borders.
A study in early 2018 found that despite the peace agreement between the FARC and the government, the number of human rights activist killings in 2017 rose to the highest level since 2002. 121 human rights activists were killed. Most were apparently killed by assassins on behalf of landlords, businessmen and right-wing radical groups. The regime does nothing to find the murderers and bring them to justice. Human rights organizations therefore urged the ICC to launch a formal investigation into massacres and targeted killings in the country. (2017 was deadliest year on record for Colombian human rights defenders, Guardian 1/5 2018)
A study a short time later revealed that during the period 2002-10, Colombia’s military murdered about 10,000 civilians and wore partisan uniforms to justify US military assistance. Soldiers lured civilians into ambush with promises of jobs and then executed them. The program was at its peak while Jose Manuel Santos was Minister of War (2007-10). He was awarded the Nobel Peace Prize in 2016. (Colombian army killed thousands more civilians than reported, study claims, Guardian 8/5 2018)