Colombia

Colombia: Militarisation serving extraction

Tomás Gisbert & María Jesús Pinto

The Colombian armed forces, with 281,400 military personnel, are the second largest army in all of Latin America, surpassed only by Brazil. Added to that are the 159,000 members of the National Police, a militarised police force that reports to the Ministry of Defence. In Colombia there are 6.2 soldiers per one thousand inhabitants, a ratio almost four times that of Brazil.

The surge in extractive mining and energy activities in Colombia over the last few years has come accompanied by the massive militarisation of the zones where the mining and energy sectors operate. The Colombian government has in recent years created what are known as Energy, Mining and Transport Battalions. Their growth has accompanied the policy of attracting foreign investment in the sector from multinational corporations for the implementation of the neoliberal extractive policy: the so-called 'mining and energy drive'. At the beginning of 2011 there were 11 mining and energy battalions, but by 2014 there were already 21.

WRI: campaigning and networking in Colombia

COs workshopCOs workshopIn November, Hannah from the WRI office and Igor Seke from WRI's Right to Refuse to Kill Committee visited Colombia.

Emergency medical support for Colombia conscientious objection and lgbt activist


Salvador talking about nonviolence


Salvador, long-time activist with the conscientious objection group “Quinto Mandamiento” in Barrancabermeja, needs emergency medical support.

WRI: campaigning and networking in Colombia

Commission launch, Bogotá, 1st NovemberCommission launch, Bogotá, 1st NovemberThis is write-up of the trip made by Hannah Brock (Right to Refuse to Kill programme worker) and Igor Seke (of the Right to Refuse to Kill committee), from 28th October – 8th November 2013. We were joined by Rachel Brett, of the Quaker United Nations Office [QUNO] (and member of the Right to Refuse to Kill committee), from 30th October – 3rd November.

COLOMBIA: Diego Arbey León Hurtado

Country:
  • Colombia
Alert:

Diego Arbey León Hurtado está reclutado en una zona de conflicto armado en Colombia. Está recibiendo fuertes presiones para que abandone sus creencias noviolentas y antimilitaristas. La Acción Colectiva de Objetores y Objetoras de Conciencia lo está acompañando y espera que en pocos dias le devuelvan a la libertad. En caso de querer apoyar escribir cartas de solidaridad a Diego o de presión a los militares al correo juliano@objetoresbogota.org.

Diego Arbey León Hurtado

Country:
  • Colombia
Activist type:
  • Conscientious objector
Status:
  • Recruited


Colombian CO detained in raid and held for 45 days

In a powerful reminder of the ongoing problem of batidas (forced recruitment raids on the streets, like press gangs), Colombian CO Juan Carlos Poveda Camaro (http://www.wri-irg.org/node/21996) was recruited in Villavicencio, and held for 45 days.

Juan Carlos Poveda Camargo

Country:
  • Colombia
Activist type:
  • Conscientious objector
Status:
  • Recruited


Related articles:

Report on the International Conference on War Tax Resistance and Peace Tax Campaigns held February, 2013 in Bogotá, Colombia

Javier Garate giving a Skype presentation to the conference from the WRI office in LondonJavier Garate giving a Skype presentation to the conference from the WRI office in LondonMany WRI friends and affiliates were involved in this conference, and here we reprint a report produced by American Quakers on the conference.

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