Peace and Humand Rights

Peace and Humand Rights

Peace and Human Rights

Territorial context and Activities

The UPD mission on Peace and Human Rights is to promote the reintegration of the rights and basic conditions for a dignified life to the disadvantaged communities and the conflict victims in Colombia. The UPD supports the Peace program through dialogue and empowerment of actors, creation of international support networks and raising awareness.


Conflict and Human RightsThe Peace ProcessActivitiesArticles
Conflict and Human Rights in Colombia

Sources: DANE, Desplazamiento forzado de los grupos étnicos en Colombia, Los orígenes, las dinámicas y el crecimiento del conflicto armado, Guerra y violencias en Colombia, Una Nación DesplazadaAmnesty International 2015Informe de la Alta Comisionada para los Derechos Humanos sobre la situación de los derechos humanos en Colombia 2013, Cuarto informe CIDH sobre la situación de derechos humanos en Colombia 2015, ONU, Consejo de Derechos Humanos, Informe de derechos humanos 2015

History of the Armed Conflict in Colombia

The conflict in Colombia is a long duration phenomenon, variable in intensity and with a great heterogeneity in violence. In this conflict three groups engaged war: the guerrillas, the state security forces and the paramilitary groups. The interaction of these groups with other forms of criminal activity is complex: dependig of the changing character of the armed conflict, its protagonists and its contexts, four periods have been identified in its evolution. The first period (1958-1982) marks the transition from bipartisan to subversive violence, characterized by the proliferation of guerrillas in contrast with the   social mobilization rise and the marginalization of the armed conflict. The second period (1982-1996) is distinguished by the political projection, territorial expansion and military growth of the guerrillas, the emergence of paramilitary groups, the crisis and partial collapse of the State, the irruption and spread of drug trafficking, decline of the Cold War along with the positioning of drug trafficking on the global agenda, the new Political Constitution of 1991, and peace processes and democratic reforms with partial and ambiguous results. The third period (1996-2005) marks the threshold of a renewed armed conflict. It is distinguished by the simultaneous expansion of guerrillas and paramilitary groups, the crisis and the rebuilding of the State in the midst of armed conflict and the political radicalization of public opinion towards a military solution to the armed conflict. The fight against drug trafficking and its connection with the fight against terrorism renew the international pressures that fuel the armed conflict, coupled with the expansion of drug trafficking and changes in its organization. The fourth period (2005-2012) marks the resumption of the armed conflict. It is distinguished by a military offensive of the state that reached its maximum degree of efficiency in counterinsurgency action, weakening but not overthrowing the guerrilla, that even militarily rearranged itself. at the same time there is the political negotiation failure with paramilitary groups, resulting in a rearmament that is accompanied by a violent internal rearrangement between highly fragmented, volatile and changing structures, strongly permeated by drug trafficking, more pragmatic in their criminal actions and more challenging vis-à-vis the state.

The main cause of the current situation in the conflict can be found in the early 1990s, when two of the main guerrilla groups, the FARC and ELN, moved away from the peace processes, although it did lead to the demobilization of other guerrillas. Between 1991 and 1994, due to the loss of resources that led to the end of the cold war and the political space offered by the peace agreements, these groups were restructured. This process involved changes in the financing sources, guerrillas forms of operation and organization, technologies and territorial expansion. In terms of territorial expansion, during the first half of the 1990s, guerrilla groups increased their territorial coverage and displaced some of their structures into territories such as the eastern plains, the Pacific coast and isolated areas of inter-Andean valleys. Despite this progress, there was no increase in violence during those years. Most of the isolated, marginal and less densely populated areas of the country thus became the main stage for warfare over the next few years. It was no coincidence that in these areas is concentrated the highest density of crops for the production of narcotics, in particular coca.

Since 1996, there has been a significant change in the dynamics of the conflict, largely as a result of the effects of the previous adjustment period, in which guerrilla and paramilitary groups grew and strengthened. As a result, there is a significant increase in both the intensity of the conflict and the frequency of fighting and attacks, as well as increasing involvement of the civilian population.

The first major offensive in this period was undertaken by the FARC in mid-1996, when both its combat and its unilateral actions increased. In spite of the effort of this guerrilla to move to war, the violence of conflict continued happening mainly in unilateral actions. During its military boom, the FARC achieved enough political influence to open a negotiation with the Pastrana government while those negotiations were carried out in the midst of an unprecedented intensification of the war.

The ELN, on the other hand, also contributed significantly to the escalation of the conflict during the recrudescence. The unilateral actions of this group increased in 2000 due to an offensive that had the objective to destabilize four municipalities in the south of Bolivar. However, the offensive failed to push the clearance, which, coupled with national and international rejection of the mass kidnappings between April 1999 and February 2000 and the military debris of Barrancabermeja and the Farallones de Cali, ended up sealing the decline of this organization.

The paramilitary groups, which had already been present in the conflict ,in the early 1990s were in the midst of a process of organization. During the second half of the 1990s, in many regions of the country, there were several paramilitary organizations with hierarchical structures, logistical capacity and professional expertise in the various forms and purposes of violence: from that associated with drug trafficking, to protection and selective violence. In April 1997, the Autodefensas Campesinas de Córdoba and Urabá, those of the Magdalena Medio and those of the Llanos Orientales united to form the United Self-Defense Forces of Colombia (Autodefensas Unidas de Colombia – AUC). The process of alliance between the different paramilitary groups resulted in a federation of regional groups that defined themselves as “counter-rebellious and allied state organizations in their counterinsurgency struggle.” Under these premises, they defined a territorial expansion plan and deployed a strategy of violence that significantly increased the intensity of the conflict, especially the victimization of the civilian population. In addition, since 2000, this federation of paramilitaries has substantially increased the number of fighting with the guerrillas, acquiring a counterinsurgency trait, sometimes complementary and sometimes substitute, of the counterinsurgency strategy of the state forces.

In relation to the AUC territorial expansion, the operations had its main epicenter in the north of the country, where they were engaged in the construction of an anti-subversive corridor, that goes from the border with Panama (Darien jungle) to the limits with Venezuela, and passes through the north of Antioquia, Córdoba, Bolivar, Magdalena Medio and Cesar. After obtaining to settle in the santanderes, the paramilitary expansion continued towards the east, looking for the control of the department of Arauca. Another axis of expansion of the AUC project was towards the southwest of the country, which had as its main areas of influence the north of the valley (in connection with the Canyon of the Ticks) and Bajo Putumayo, axes from which expanded through the Valle, Cauca, Nariño, Putumayo and part of Huila.

The paramilitary expansion between 1997 and 2002 had different impacts on the main insurgent groups, with the ELN being the most weakened.

From the beginning of 2003 until 2005, the conflict lowered, and between mid-2005 and mid-2006,  decreased substantially. This fall is probably due to the Military Forces push towards the south that,  with the objective to decapitate the FARCthe leadership, program known as the “Patriot Plan”. In fact, both combatant and civilian deaths have been reduced substantially after the dramatic levels of victimization reached at the beginning of the decade.

However, at the end of 2006, there was a sudden increase in civilian deaths, due in part to the way in which findings of mass graves have being recorded, many of which have been known as the product of the paramilitary ex-commanders confessions in the framework of the Justice and Peace Law.

Meanwhile, state forces with governmental political support, translated into a major fiscal effort and the renewed US government support to the continuation of Plan Colombia as part of its military assistance program, modernized their equipment and went from having 145,000 fighters in the late 1990s to 431,253 in January 2009.

These adjustments have meant a significant recovery of territories to the State and also a better efficiency in combat, that managed to weaken the insurgent groups and prepare the favorable conditions for the peace agreements, which began on November 19, 2012 in Havana.


In the context of contemporary violence in Colombia, more than six million people have been forced to move inside and outside the national territory, abandoning their homes, their lands and territories, their property, their customs, communities because of different forms of violence. More than six million people displaced within Colombian territory sum to thousands of victims who have been forced to cross borders internationally in search of protection or refuge. According to the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR), Colombia has become the country of origin of the largest number of refugee applicants in the Americas, with approximately four hundred thousand people.

Colombia has one of the highest levels of inequality in rural land tenure, and approximately 10% of the country’s population has been displaced by violence. According to information provided by the State, as of 1 July 2015, the RUV reported a total of 6,300,422 victims of forced internal displacement, of which 61,772 persons were included in this registry during the first half of 2015. On the other hand, it should be noted that according to statistics from the Center for the Monitoring of Internally Displaced Persons (IDMC), Colombia registered 137,200 new IDPs in 2014. These figures place Colombia as the second largest country in the world with the greatest number of internally displaced persons.

Violence from the armed conflict is not the only forced internal displacement cause in Colombia. Violence linked to drug trafficking, territorial conflicts, spraying of illicit crops, eradication of crops, socio-economic violence, mega-projects, and the agricultural industry are some of the other sources of violence caused by high rates of forced displacement that are registered in the country today.

With references to ethnic minorities, the departments where the expulsion of a population belonging to one of the three Colombian ethnic groups (indigenous, Afro-descendant and ROM) is most evident is in Vaupés, Guainía and Amazonas due to the strong expulsion of indigenous people, and Chocó , Valle del Cauca, Nariño and Cordoba for the afros.

In a country that has a persistent agrarian problem, with a history marked by difficult access to land, an estimated 8.3 million hectares have been forcibly dispossessed or abandoned. Almost 99 percent of Colombian municipalities have been affected. In terms of return and relocation, the State reported that by the year 2014, 78.6% of households would have taken the decision to resume their life project in their current places of residence and location, or returning to the place from which they were expelled.

Victims’ compensations

According to official estimates, some 8 million hectares of land have been abandoned or dispossessed of their occupants in the course of the conflict. This has mainly affected land occupied by peasants and the territories owned collectively by indigenous and Afro-descendant communities.

The government indicated that it was making great efforts to compensate the victims: in 2015, of the 83,000 restitution requests, it has already resolved 14,000 cases. In addition, 84% of families with a restitution order are on their land and no person who returned to their lands has again become a victim of dispossession. In this regard, as of November 20, 2015, the judges have ruled 1,453 judgments that restitute a total of 176,464 hectares. The Land Restitution Unit had received 77,893 requests for restitution, of which 43% have been located in the 404 areas enabled for the implementation of the restitution policy, due to security conditions. Of the total number of applications filed, 56% of the administrative proceedings have been completed, 60% of which have been registered in the Register of Deprived Lands and 8,000 have been filed with the Specialized Judges of Land Restitution.

However, the CIDH has reported that the reparations granted by the Victims Unit and the more than 900 restitution sentences handed down have faced serious obstacles to achieving reparation and that even though judges and magistrates have attempted to accompany restitution measures and formalization with orders aimed at ensuring victims’ access to social rights, compliance with these orders has been slow and complex.

Ethnic composition

According to the Census of the population, in 2005 in Colombia reside 1,392,623 indigenous people who correspond to the 3.43% of the population of the country; the Afro-Colombians are 4,311,757 people, 10.62% of the total and the Rom or Roma people is made up of 4,858 people who represent 0.01% of the total population of the country, which means that the Colombian population that was recognized as belonging to some ethnic group corresponds to 14.06% of the Colombian population.

The indigenous population is mainly rural compared to Afro and ROM. The largest number of communities are based in indigenous “resguardos”, DANE certifies the population of 796 resguardos located in 234 municipalities and 27 departments. To a lesser extent they are located in the indigenous surroundings, implying that some groups are occupying territories without being recognized, which implies a special isolation and greater vulnerability to attacks against their rights.

The Afro population is composed of four groups: the group located in the Pacific Corridor (western coastal region), the raizales of the San Andrés Archipelago, Providencia and Santa Catalina, the community of San Basilio Palenque and those located in municipal headwaters or in the big cities, which gives the group a certain dispersion.

On the other hand the gypsies or ROM maintain differentiated cultural characteristics and they are characterized by its urban character, being “hidden” in the national statistics until the census of 2005.

As for its distribution by departments, although in some the location of one group or another is very defined, the departments where the importance of the indigenous population is greater are La Guajira , Cauca, Nariño and Córdoba, which account for 60% of the country’s total indigenous population

This same concentration-dispersion phenomenon is observed in the case of the Afro population, where the departments of Valle del Cauca, Antioquía and Bolívar account for 50.6% of that population. In the case of the ROM population this pattern of distribution of concentration-dispersion becomes more extreme, since 85% of the total ROM is located in Atlántico, Bolívar, Valle del Cauca and Bogotá DC, of which only Atlántico concentrates the 40%.


The Colombian Peace Process

Sources: Introducción a los procesos de paz, ABC del Acuerdo de Paz, Acuerdo final para la terminación del conflicto y la construcción de una paz estable y duradera, Oficina del Alto Comisionado para la Paz

The peace process is not a timely moment, but a set of phases that need their time to consult all the affected actors, in a collective effort to reach agreements that will end the previous situation, dominated by violence and armed confrontation . The implementation of the peace process requires dialogue and consensus on the agreements that have been created to put an end to physical violence, and through these agreements, to initiate a new stage of progress and development to identify and overcome the structural conditions that led to the emergence of conflict. Within the peace process, therefore, extreme importance mark the negotiation and mediation phase, and the monitoring and evaluation plans for compliance with what has been agreed upon. In this sense, there are “processes” that succeeded and others that have failed, precisely because they have not been able to implement the agreement, generating a great frustration for the non-fulfillment of the expectations created. Starting and developing a peace process is therefore a real adventure, a major challenge full of uncertainties, obstacles and possibilities.

Dialogue and Peace Agreements

On November 19 2012, the Havana negotiating table begins between the FARC and the Government of Colombia, and a month after the parties began their first round of talks in Norway. The first agreements were in May 2013, with a partial agreement on agricultural development (one of the six points of the agreed road map) and in November with a partial agreement on political participation of the ex-guerillas.

In May 2014, the third partial agreement on the solution to the problem of illicit drugs was defined, while the discussion on the victims of the conflict began in July. This point includes three sub-themes: compensations, truth and justice. Only in December begins the first unilateral and indefinite truce of the FARC.

In March 2015, the joint demining agreement between the military and the guerrillas was established and the government ordered a one-month suspension of the bombing to the FARC. However, the death of 11 military personnel in a FARC attack led to the resumption of government air strikes, which left 26 guerrillas dead and the end of the unilateral and indefinite truce of the FARC.

In June the dialogues continue and the Truth Commission is established; in July the parties approached again, with a new unilateral truce of FARC and another suspension of the bombings by the Government. In September 2015 the Legislative Act for Peace wass presented to the Congress of the Republic and in December the referendum for Peace was approved.

In January 2016 the government and the FARC agreed that the United Nations will verify the definitive cease-fire, in August the decree establishing the plebiscite was signed but in October, by a narrow margin, the voting population rejected the agreements. In November the parties submitted a new agreement, and in December President Santos and FARC representative Rodrigo Londoño signed the peace.

The agreement between the Government and FARC

The Final Agreement between the Government of Colombia and the FARC is divided into 6 main points, corresponding to different agreements between the parties, which aim to contribute to the transformations necessary to lay the foundations for a stable and lasting peace.

Point 1 contains the agreement “Rural Integral Reform”, which will contribute to the structural transformation of the countryside, closing the gaps between the countryside and the city and creating conditions of well-being and good living for the rural population. The “Integral Rural Reform” should integrate the regions, contribute to eradicate poverty, promote equality and ensure the full enjoyment of citizens’ rights.

Point 2 contains the agreement “Political Participation: Opening Democracy to Build Peace”. Building and consolidating peace in the context of the end of the conflict requires a democratic expansion that allows new forces to emerge on the political scene to enrich debate and deliberation around major national problems, strengthen pluralism and therefore the representation of the different visions and interests of society, with due guarantees for participation and political inclusion. In particular, the implementation of the Final Agreement will contribute to the expansion and deepening of democracy as it will involve the abandonment of arms and the proscription of violence as a method of political action for all Colombians in order to move to a stage where democracy reigns, with full guarantees for those who participate in politics, in order to open new spaces for participation.

Point 3 contains the agreement “Stop the struggle, Bilateral and Definitive Hostilities and the Deportation of Weapons”, which aims at the definitive termination of offensive actions between the Public Force and the FARC-EP, and in general of the hostilities and any action foreseen in the Rules Governing the Cease, including the affectation to the population, creating the conditions for the beginning of the implementation of the Final Agreement and the abandonment of the arms, institutiona set up and the reincorporation of the FARC-EP into civilian life. It also contains the agreement “Reincorporation of the FARC-EP to civil life – economically, socially and politically – according to their interests.” To set up the foundations for the construction of a stable and lasting peace requires the effective reincorporation of the FARC-EP into the social, economic and political life of the country. The reincorporation reaffirms the commitment of the FARC-EP to close the chapter of internal conflict, become a valid actor within democracy and contribute decisively to the consolidation of peaceful coexistence, non-repetition and the transformation of conditions that have facilitated persistence of violence in the territory.

This point also includes the agreement on “Security guarantees and combating criminal organizations responsible for killings or massacres or assaulting human rights defenders, social movements or political movements, including criminal organizations which have been designated as successors of the paramilitarism and their support networks, and the prosecution of criminal conduct that threatens the implementation of the agreements and the construction of peace”. The agreement includes measures such as the National Political Pact, the National Commission on Security Guarantees, the Special Investigation Unit, the Elite Corps in the National Police, the Comprehensive Security System for the Exercise of Politics, the Comprehensive Security and Protection Program for Communities and Organizations in the Territories, and Prevention and Anti-Corruption Measures.

Point 4 contains the agreement “Solution to the Problem of Illicit Drugs”. In order to build peace it is necessary to find a definitive solution to the problem of illicit drugs, including illicit crops and the production and marketing of illicit drugs. To this end, a new vision is promoted that gives a different and differentiated treatment to the phenomenon of consumption, to the problem of illicit use of crops, and to organized crime associated with drug trafficking, ensuring a general approach to human rights and public health, differentiated and of genre.

Point 5 contains the “Victims” agreement. Since the Exploratory Encounter of 2012, it was agreed that compensation for victims should be at the heart of any agreement. The agreement creates the Comprehensive System of Truth, Justice, Reparation and Non-Repetition, which contributes to the fight against impunity by combining judicial mechanisms, that allow for the investigation and punishment of serious violations of human rights and serious violations of international humanitarian law, with complementary extrajudicial mechanisms that contribute to the clarification of the truth of what happened, the search for missing loved ones and the reparation of the damage caused to individuals, groups and entire territories. The Integral System is composed of the Commission for the Clarification of Truth, Coexistence and Non-Repetition, the Special Unit for the Search of Disappeared Persons due to the armed conflict, the Special Jurisdiction for Peace, the Comprehensive Reparation Measures for Peacebuilding, and the Non-Repetition Warranties.

Point 6 contains the agreement “Mechanisms for Implementation and Verification”, which creates a “Commission for Follow-up, Impulse and Verification of the Implementation of the Final Agreement”, composed for the purpose by representatives of the National Government and the FARC-EP, among others, to follow up on the components of the Agreement and verify their compliance, to serve as an instance for the resolution of disputes, and to promote and follow up on legislative implementation.

Support to armed conflict victims

The UPD mission is to promote the rights and basic human conditions reintegration  for a dignified life to the disadvantaged communities and victims of the conflict in Colombia. The UPD supports the Peace program through dialogue and empowerment of actors, creation of international support networks and raising awareness.

General Objective: reintegration of rights and basic human conditions   for a decent life to the communities victims of the conflict in the Colombian Caribbean

Specific Objectives

– Support to the victims of the conflict in the Magdalena through training for their empowerment

– Support for the Transitional Peace program through dialogue and the empowerment of its actors

– Creation of networks for the development of community support strategies

– Support to the NGOs that stood out to support the victims of the conflict in the Colombian Caribbean


Support to the NGOs that stood out to support the victims of the conflict in the Colombian Caribbean

The Planning and Development Unit supports NGOs and community organizations in their efforts to achieve equitable and fair development, with a focus on reconciliation and respect for human rights. To achieve its mission, the UPD identified the most distinguished NGOs in the fight for human rights in the territories in which they work, to support them in their activities.

Among the communities and NGOs we support:

Wiwa of Gotzheyi, Kemakúmake y Wímake Communities

These three populations are linked historically, territorially and politically. Historically, the role of the leader and traditional authority is emphasized: Ramón Gil Barros, a spiritual leader known as one of the most representative and charismatic leaders in the Serrano Indigenous world, was the first Governor of the newly formed Gonawindúa Tayrona Organization in 1987 and is currently the legal representative of the Wiwa Delegation. Under his leadership, the migration of hundreds of Wiwa del Cesar families to the northern side of the Sierra was forged through the Magdalena department between the end of the 1980s and the beginning of the 1990s, allowing the formation of several populations: Bunkuanguega (basin river Don Diego), Wímake, Kalabangaga, Kemakúmake and Gotzheyi (the latter four in the Guachaca river basin). These migratory currents are based on a narrative of interethnic relationship and order on the territoriality of the Sierra Nevada of Santa Marta.

As a population center of the Guachaca basin, Kemakumake has 75 traditional houses, two unguma (ritual and political decision spaces) and two ushui (ritual center for women or wives of mamos, sagas). It is followed by Wimake with 26 traditional houses, a house of material (brick and zinc roof) two unguma and two ushui. Gotzheyi has 20 traditional houses, 8 houses of material, two unguma and two ushui. Regarding education highlights Gotzheyi, which has the Ethnoeducatica District Institution Zalemakú Sertuga, where they dictate degrees from preschool to basic secondary (baccalaureate). This institution has preschools and elementary schools in Wimake and Kemakumake. Kemakumake and Gotzheyi have health posts, while Wimake does not have its health care service.

Gotzheyi and Kemakumake are within the Guamaka political jurisdiction; while Wimake de La Tagua is within the municipal district of Santa Marta, Magdalena.

These three populations have faced the armed conflict in all its characteristics, since they began to conform until the XXI century, where paramilitary groups consolidate their presence in this area of the SNSM.

Foundation for Community Human Development (FUNDEHUMAC)

Founded in 2000, its mission is to educate, promote and provide support to the human being specifically in areas violated by socio-cultural, environmental and political factors, helping social reintegration. FUNDEHUMAC in these years has guaranteed to the communities in Magdalena a personalized, integral and continuous attention, without any discrimination, facilitating the access to the services they require, always granting great value and respect to human dignity.

Among the social services and community work, FUNDEHUMAC provides:

– Care services for people in training and socio-labor insertion;

– Child and family care services: Prevention, diagnosis and treatment for child protection and family support;

– Women’s care services: Information and psycho-social care for women; emergency social care for women victims of domestic violence;

– Training and socio-labor insertion: association of affected people and familiar sensitized groups;

– Reception and social care services for displaced persons and refugees;

– Lectures and workshops that allow small entrepreneurs to form, in terms of labor and social skills;

– Empowerment of its collaborators to better off the performance of their activities;

– Guidance and accompaniment service for those who want to be entrepreneurs;

– Play-pedagogical workshops: strategies to facilitate the way of transmitting messages, by playing manual games,recreational and pedagogical activities;

– Youth meetings: it promotes a climate of group construction for young peace builders in each region identified in order to work around initiatives of Peace and Reconciliation.


Redepaz is the National Network of Citizen Initiatives for Peace that articulates the experiences and practices that multiple social agents develop in the local, interlocal, regional and national dimensions. The mission of Redepaz is to expand and consolidate the social movement for Peace as an initiative of citizen power, with political, cultural and ethical sense, for the refoundation of Colombia. Under the principle of a civic ethic of respect for life and the peaceful treatment of conflicts, Redepaz is committed to building social and economic democracy that allows access to justice without violence.

Redepaz articulates processes such as the National Movement of Women Builders of Peace, the Movement of Girls and Children for Peace, the Youth Network for Disarmament, the National Coordination of Local Constituent Assemblies, the Mothers for Life Movement, citizen watchdogs to the integral reparation process, among others.

Since its inception, Redepaz has promoted in all its spaces the recognition and respect of women and has promoted the gender perspective in all its processes and projects, as inclusive and horizontal spaces. In recent years, Redepaz has assumed the task of strengthening and building a work area called Women and Gender, with the aim of making the commitment and tenacity of Colombian women to build Peace even more visible, recognizing the gender perspective in inclusive and horizontal spaces, and to ensure their empowerment as equal political actors, by promoting and enhancing gender-based advocacy in local, regional and national public policies and by promoting Security Council resolution 1325 the UN – Women, Peace and Security.

Support to the victims of the conflict in the Magdalena by means of training for their empowerment.

Within the Peace and Human Rights program, the UPD has promoted the training of officials and volunteers from different organizations working in this sector.

The training of the actors focuses on strengthening the necessary skills for the preparation of studies and presentation of project proposals. The analytical capacities strengthening is essential to evaluate the development potential of the analyzed communities, to understand their problems and to identify the best development program that can benefit the community. In this way thr development can be achieved starting from a bottom-up approach, analyzing the problems of the communities and generating an autonomous process of identification and solution of the problems.

The NGOs and community organizations training is necessary for a proficous collaboration in international projects, where the requirements in terms of project management and monitoring and evaluation are very rigid.

As part of the Training for Development program, in 2016 UPD provided free training for 9 students of the University of Magdalena’s anthropology faculty and 11 officials from:

Asociación de Empesarios de Magdalena, Fundación Ecologa, Fundación Pro-Sierra Nevada de Santa Marta, SENA, Casa Indegena Santa Marta, Fundación Raices Italo-Colombianas, FUNDEHUMAC.

Support for the Transitional Peace Program through dialogue and the empowerment of its actors

The Fondo de Justicia Transicional is a program to promote coexistence, a joint effort between Colombian institutions and international cooperation actors to promote processes of truth, justice, reparation and reconciliation. For this purpose the program has been promoting a process of territorial strengthening for the organization of victims. For the Department of Magdalena, the Fundehumac, Mothers for Life and the Kemakumake Wiwa community and the Planning and Development Unit work together in this process with the international community partners.

The Transitional Justice Fund has different approaches: it focuses on victims and their rights (truth, justice, reparation, guarantees of non-repetition), a focus on strengthening national and territorial capacities, unlearning violence and promoting change in cultural rights for the demobilized population and society in general, and reintegration and reconciliation with a community perspective .

General Objective

Promote national and territorial capacities for institutional strengthening, peacebuilding and the promotion of coexistence and reconciliation, with emphasis on the justice system, respect for human rights and the rights of victims

Specific Objectives

Strengthen national and territorial capacities to build peaceful coexistence based on the recognition of human rights, rights restoration for the victims and promotion of the social, economic and cultural reintegration of the demobilized population with a community and differential approach. With an emphasis on transitional justice mechanisms, it seeks to strengthen the Colombian justice system so that it realizes the rights to truth, justice and reparation of victims and contributes to the construction of peace and reconciliation in Colombia

Thematic lines

– Strengthening of victim organizations

– Strengthening social and institutional capacities and knowledge management

– Recovery of Historical Memory

– Access to Justice

– Communication and visibility of victims’ rights

– Inclusion, reintegration and strengthening of the social sphere in contexts of conflict, transition or post-conflict

Activity implementation

A working space has been promoted with victims of violence to prepare a document of proposals from victim organizations and / or accompanying victims to advance territorial peace building processes.

The topics discussed were the 8 thematic axes of Law 1448

Forced disappearance

Results with the institutions: Mobile brigades to make declarations of missing persons;

Contributions: Accompaniment to the victims in the established routes, visualization of cases in municipalities;

Protection, self-protection

Workshops and trainings of Fundehumac, REDEPAZ, UNDP.

Sexual violence in armed conflict

Workshops and trainings of Fundehumac, REDEPAZ, UNDP.

Project management and execution

Manage: An agricultural farm, creation of a psychosocial center for victims with suitable officials, productive yards, pig farms, productive projects.

Land and territories

Socialization activities of the existence of the land restitution office for declarations and registration to the land restitution process


Workshops and trainings of Fundehumac, REDEPAZ, UNDP.

Citizen Veedurias

Training on citizens’ rights

Forced displacement

Results: Humanitarian aid, income management, entrepreneurship, business strengthening and housing subsidy, training of victims in different areas;

Contributions: conversion of actors into leaders, multipliers and advisers in the processes of forced displacement, giving support to relatives (psychological attention)


Since 2009, we have been working on the follow-up of the displaced victims and from 2011, with the victims of violence. Since this date six tri-partite meetings have been held among victims, indigenous communities, institutions and international entities. Joint agreements have also been made for work on behalf of victims of violence in the territories of Santa Marta, Cienaga, Aracataca, Fundación and Zona Bananera.


Networking for the development of community support strategies

The Planning and Development Unit supports reconciliation and compensation strategies developed within the peace process, and works to raise awareness and expand institutional support to established activities. To achieve a broader convergence of interests for the implementation of shared strategies, the UPD is related to other institutions present in the territory.

In this context, the UPD supports the activities of the Victims Unit in its work with NGOs in Magdalena. The Victims Unit has as strategic approach to bring the State closer to the victims through efficient coordination and transformative actions that promote the effective participation of the victims in their reparation process.

The National Learning System (SENA) offers free training to millions of Colombians who benefit from technical, technological and complementary programs focused on economic, technological and social development. SENA is a fundamental institution for the technical training of communities affected by the conflict, especially in rural areas.

The Association of Employers of the Magdalena (AEM) is an initiative of the private productive sector, which seeks to join efforts among the main 45 economic groups in the region, for the development of the territory of Magdalena and the District of Santa Marta. The activities of the AEM are focused on promoting greater competitiveness of the departmental economic system, enhancing human capital and generating new economic opportunities in the territory.

La Resistenza di Cali

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History of the conflict and humanitarian context in the Colombian Caribbean

Departments dof Atlántico, Bolívar, La Guajira, Magdalena


La Guajira