About CPT Colombia
We accompany community processes and grassroots organizations who embody nonviolent resistance as a tool of defense against the violent framework that dominates politics, economics, and culture.
The Colombian people continue to suffer a widespread threat of violence from legal and illegal armed actors after more than 60 years of internal conflict and civil war. Since the mid-50s, social movements that challenge the power structures have been specifically targeted and suppressed by the government.
Our team travels regularly to be present with small farming and mining communities in the rural areas of the Magdalena Medio region, caught in the crossfires of decades of war and more recently, hyper-development. In the city of Barrancabermeja, we also partner with local human rights organizations in their efforts to highlight the effects of a conflict that has permeated the urban social structures through organized crime, micro-trafficking and displacement from rural areas.
Our call to peacemaking means living, working, and worshiping in community, drawing from a variety of spiritual traditions that ground us in a common goal for peace.
Most recent CPTnet story:
April 4th, 2014
“Where does peacebuilding take place? Where does the transformation of our
reality start? What are some of the
tools that we should use to achieve peace? Where is peace born? The actual peace process has caused all of the sectors of
society to mobilize in favor of an accord that will finalize the conflict, but
has also evoked different feelings in these diverse sectors of society about
what it means to sign a peace accord with the guerrillas.…
In the communities of Garzal, Nueva Esperanaza, Guayabo, and
Las Pavas are some of the processes being built in our country, processes that
remain hopeful although distant from the important government decisions. These communities live their lives
between songs, sermons, tears, and concerns, hoping that truth will prevail
even lies appear so powerful. Their
songs express the truth of what conflict looks like in our country and describe
how the consequences of poor decisions always fall on them.
Song “Mi Acordeón” – Music from the communities of Garzal and Nueva Esperanza.
For more songs from the Colombian agricultural communities Christian Peacemaker Teams accompanies, click here.
March 22nd, 2014
Every year, communities across North America come together
in solidarity with our Colombia brothers and sisters in an effort to show
policymakers that they want real change in U.S. and Canadian policy towards
Colombia. With the Colombian government and the largest guerrilla group,
the FARC, currently engaged in peace negotiations, there is renewed hope for an
end to the war in Colombia. After
five decades of unspeakable violence, forced displacements, widespread
massacres, threats against unionists and human rights activists, and the
economic and social exclusion of indigenous and Afro-descendant communities, let
us join Colombians in saying it is time for peace. This year's Days of
Prayer and Action are April 5-7.
Directly translated, the word “adelante” means “forward.” “Adelante” can also mean “ahead,” with
the implied desire to move past the current situation to something further on,
to something beyond. Peace and justice are not static concepts and
neither are the people of Colombia. With one foot in front of the other,
Colombians are already moving ahead and going forward in the work of peace and
justice throughout the country. We hope that you will use the resources
below and join with the organizations, churches, and ordinary people in
Colombia in their desire and action to move forward.
¡ADELANTE! Peace with justice for ALL Colombians!
Dedicate a worship service to peace with justice for all Colombians. Included are prayers, songs, poems, stories, reflections, and more. Click here for a bulletin insert to engage your congregati
Join our Colombian sisters and brothers
in moving peace
forward! This packet
includes three ways YOU can make a
Advocate for a change in US
policy by writing letters to Congress.
Create a display or craft night and what
steps are needed to finally bring
with justice to Colombia. Demonstrate your
commitment to Colombia with a public action.
March 20th, 2014
[Note: Parwen Aziz is a Kurdish woman living in Iraqi
Kurdistan. She is currently participating
in the first CPT training in Iraqi Kurdistan. She knows firsthand the effects of governments exploiting
villagers in the quest for oil revenue. She wrote this reflection after a role-play depicting the
consequences for Colombian farmers when large corporations take their
traditional farmland to plant oil palms, which can produce alternative fuel sources
for automobiles. ]
The cycle of life has been reversed. Trees defeat the earth. I do not
like to say your name, Oil Palm. Scents of gunpowder and pictures of
distressed mothers because of a damn tree. When I first heard your name
and learned how your fruit
could be squeezed and the juice used as a replacement for petroleum oil,
rushed to interrupt my teacher. “How can we bring this tree to
I wondered. I wanted the response to be that we
could import this miraculous tree to our country. I wanted this to be a
substitute for oil so that all warfare,
extermination, and destruction over the black substance will not happen
humankind ever again. But, alas,
all my dreams and imaginations were destroyed when I perceived that this
just as much destruction. This
damn tree causes thousands of Colombian families to become fugitives
homes. Thousands of families have become low-paid workers in their own
I became depressed when I heard a story of a widow with her son. They
were working in the heat for three
months, planting, tending, and harvesting their corn. All their efforts
were fruitless and
wasted. Someone set the pile of
corn on fire and the products were burned. They were left with nothing
to feed the children. I heard her say, “Take as many pictures
as you can, take photos of everything here so that the whole world will
what happened to us.” War and oppression pivots around corrupt
governments and capitalism. The
core point is that the capitalists get a lot of money and they become
richer, while the workers and needy people remain poor and disappointed.
March 20th, 2014
Farmers Association of Buenos Aires (ASOCAB) yesterday delivered a
to President Juan Manuel Santos summarizing the continued attacks and
received by the community of Las Pavas. They appealed to him, “Mr.
President, you have shown your commitment to victims. By virtue of this
commitment we come to
you, with the hope that the State would indeed act in our favor and
repetition of incidents that victimize us.”
The community restates their commitment to “peacefully insisting”— despite
attacks by palm oil company, Aportes San Isidro´s armed security—that the law
provides the means to their complete ownership and right to the land. In spite of winning the National Peace
Prize in November and being re-recognized by the government agency that
manages reparations to victims, Unidad Nacional de Atención y Reparación
Integral a las Víctimas, the attacks and threats against the community
As recently as 6 March, at 7.15 pm, under the cover of complete darkness, the palm oil company’s guards threw bricks
into the living areas of homes and onto roofs, creating dents.
See reflection on the damage caused by the palm oil industry
written by Parwen Aziz, who is currently participating in the Christian Peacemaker Team training in
March 11th, 2014
Our May delegation should be especially appealing to those involved in
organized labour. Colombia
continues to be the most dangerous place on earth for trade unionists. Participants in this delegation will
meet with public and private sector union leaders, as well as organized
informal sector self-employed workers. Activists in all three groups are threatened because of their
efforts to protect workers’ rights and livelihoods.
Participants will also spend some time in north-east
Antioquia—the state/province hardest hit by anti-labor violence—where they will
be hosted by our partner, human rights organization CAHUCOPANA, and learn about
its grassroots struggle to promote and defend the human rights of campesino
farmers, artisanal miners, and organized labour.
Participants will also learn about how the Canadian and U.S.
“free trade” agreements with Colombia have adversely affected Colombian and
North American workers’ rights.
Apply now! Share
this information with your coworkers! Help protect your own jobs and stop the wage race to the
bottom, which causes the brutal repression of Colombian rights and those of other
workers in the global workforce. Get
your own labour union involved by sponsoring representatives for this
us promote this delegation by downloading, printing, and posting
posters at your place of work, play, recreation, or worship:
|POSTER ALTPOSTER ALT|| |
|The posters can be printed in Black and White if you do not have access to a colour printer||for more info email email@example.com|
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