A “Peace Community” Tries Nonviolent Resistance in Colombia

FOR Peace Presence Monthly Update May 2015

11165238_484549798369168_1613660530941037497_nAmidst a ping pong table and a rockola machine that blasted hits from the 80’s and 90’s, the FOR Peace Presence team gathered together at the start of the month of May for our semiannual retreat. For several days we discussed our past, present and future work. With our partners’ input, we evaluated our work and discussed possible upcoming changes and challenges related to ongoing peace negotiations and possible post-agreement scenarios within the framework of transitional justice. We additionally had the chance to meet with one of our board members and did a workshop on the political landscape of Colombia. With renewed spirit and motivation, our teams headed out to their next accompaniments.
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Stages of Forced Displacement in Buenaventura

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While Buenaventura was without electricity after an attack by the FARC, a FORPP team headed out to accompany the Justice and Peace Commission (Comisión Intereclesial de Justicia y Paz – CIJP) in Buenaventura, where we visited the Puente Nayero Humanitarian Space, the Wounaan indigenous community from Aguaclara, who remain displaced in the Buenaventura Coliseum, and the Humanitarian and Biodiversity Reserve of Santa Rosa de Guayacán next to the Calima River.

18750387661_d8d4b152b6_kThe Puente Nayero Humanitarian Space is located in the neighborhood of La Playita, and when we entered the neighborhood, the store where we had bought cheese during previous visits was closed—the vender, Franklin López Artiztizabal disappeared in late May and there is still no news as to his whereabouts. Many venders in the neighborhood are being extorted by presumed paramilitary groups, and in April of this year the vender Wilder Ubeimar, who maintained his storefront only 100 meters from that of Franklin López, was assassinated. Wilder Ubeimar had refused to pay the extortions.


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Desplazamientos Forzados en Buenaventura

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Mientras Buenaventura estaba sin luz por un ataque de las FARC un equipo de FORPP se puso en marcha a acompañar la Comisión Intereclesial de Justicia y Paz (CIJP) en Buenaventura, donde visitamos el Espacio Humanitario de Puente Nayero, lxs indigenxs Wounaan de Aguaclara, que enduran desplazadxs en el Coliseo de Buenaventura, y el Resguardo Humanitario y Biodiverso de Santa Rosa de Guayacán al lado del río Calima.

18750387661_d8d4b152b6_kEl Espacio Humanitario de Puente Nayero está ubicado en el barrio La Playita, y cuando entramos este barrio, la tienda donde comprábamos queso en visitas anteriores está cerrada – el comerciante, Franklin López Aristizabal desapareció al final de mayo y todavía no se sabe nada de él. Muchos comerciantes del barrio están extorsionados por presuntos grupos paramilitares, y en abril de este año fue asesinado el comerciante Wilder Ubeimar quien tenía su tienda a sólo 100 metros de Franklin López. Wilder Ubeimar se había negado de pagar las extorsiones.


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Una “Comunidad de Paz” Resiste con No-Violencia en Colombia

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El siguiente artículo fue escrito por la acompañante de FOR Presente por la Paz Nikki Drake, y fue publicado originalmente en North American Congress on Latin America (NACLA). Reproducido con permisión.

Mientras se sigue avanzando en las negociaciones de paz, algunas comunidades colombianas intentan poner fin a la violencia que vive el país desde varias décadas, manteniendo activamente una distancia de todos los principales actores del conflicto.

PC 18 years


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A “Peace Community” Tries Nonviolent Resistance in Colombia

Para la versión en español, haz click aquí.

The following article written by FOR Peace Presence accompanier Nikki Drake, was originally published on North American Congress on Latin America (NACLA). Reprinted with permission.

As the Colombian peace talks proceed, some communities have attempted to move closer to resolving the country’s decades-old violence by maintaining an active and credible distance from all major parties of the conflict.PC 18 years


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