Colombia

CPT INTERNATIONAL: Train with CPT – Join CPT’s Peacemaker Corps

CPTnet
March 2, 2017
CPT INTERNATIONAL: Train with CPT – Join CPT’s Peacemaker Corps 

 

 

Christian Peacemaker Teams (CPT) is currently accepting applications for its Peacemaker Corps.  Join us in building partnerships to transform violence and oppression!  

Applicants must be 21 years of age or older and have completed, or plan to complete, a short-term CPT Delegation or internship.  Qualified applicants may be invited to participate in CPT’s intensive, month-long training from 13 July – 13 August 2017 in Chicago, Illinois USA where membership in the Peacemaker Corps is discerned.  Trained Peacemaker Corps members are then eligible to apply for open positions on CPT teams.  

CPT builds partnerships to transform violence and oppression in situations of lethal conflict around the world.  We are committed to work and relationships that: 1) honor and reflect the presence of faith and spirituality, 2) strengthen grassroots initiatives, 3) transform structures of domination and oppression, and 4) embody creative nonviolence and liberating love. 

CPT understands violence to be rooted in systemic structures of oppression.  We are committed to undoing oppressions within our own lives and in the policies and practices of our organization.   

CPT is a Christian-identified organization with multi-faith/spiritually diverse membership.  We seek individuals who are capable, responsible and rooted in faith/spirituality to work for peace as members of violence-reduction teams trained in the disciplines of nonviolence.  We are committed to building a Peacemaker Corps that reflects the rich diversity of the human family in ability, age, class, ethnicity, gender identity, language, national origin, race and sexual orientation. 

APPLICATION DEADLINE: 15 March 2017; direct any questions and send complete application to personnel@cpt.org.

Prayers for Peacemakers 21 June 2018 Colombia

Prayers for Peacemakers 21 June 2018  Colombia

Pablo Santiago, a social leader from the village of Micoahumado, in the South of Bolívar, marches in Barrancabermeja after the recent
Agrarian Summit on the 2nd of June. Over 200 leaders from the region gathered to formulate a proposal and express concerns around
one of the issues that affect them most - energy and mining policies. Photo: Caldwell Manners/CPT

 

Pray for the Colombian peacemakers who, in an adverse political context, are still struggling for their rights, despite the threats to the physical and emotional integrity of them and their families.We also ask you to pray for those who wish to continue the system of injustice and inequality and threaten the lives of Christian Peacemaker Team-Colombia’s partners.

Elections just happened. A new government has been elected after the two terms – four years long each—of Juan Manuel Santos presidency. The new President, Ivan Duque, has publicly expressed his disagreement with large sections of the Peace Agreements signed between the Santos government and the FARC-EP guerrilla group. He has not only promised to try to alter them significantly but also managed to push the Senate to postpone the implementation of the judicial muscle that would implement the agreements. This has raised concerns within the international community that praised the agreements as a holistic approach to peace that searches for the truth and reparation to victims.

Moreover, Duque and his party have a political platform that is very much favourable to large business interests. His party and that of the former president Alvaro Uribe Vélez, Duque’s mentor, have historically been named by local human rights organizations as an actor in the conflict financing armed groups. Several political analysts have claimed that the changes he wants to push through Congress will protect large business interests and ignore the needs of small farmers, turn their back to victims and strip the most vulnerable Colombians of their rights.

Although the agreements brought a sense of safety and instilled hope in the hearts of many, the real threats are strong as always. Since the signing of the agreements, over 300 environmental activists, social leaders and human rights defenders have been assassinated by armed groups that still exist, whether insurgent, paramilitary or state forces. Unfortunately, the Colombian state has not guaranteed this environment for peace.

COLOMBIA: Our next delegation needs you 26 June– 6 July!

Our next Colombia delegation needs you! We are urgently seeking more participants for a delegation scheduled to take place 26 June– 6 July. Without more applicants, the delegation cannot proceed.

Delegations are the best way to engage with CPT’s work and meet our amazing partners firsthand. If you or somebody you know is excited to learn more about CPT, there’s no better time than now!

Learn more about the delegation, and how to apply, here.

COLOMBIA POEM: The mystery of love

Photo: Caldwell Manners/ECAP

 

And if they ask me, why have I lived,
why have I lost,
At this very moment I would reply, for the sake of love,
for the sake of love I have lost everything,
for the sake of love I have gained everything,
everything that matters to me,
everything does in fact matter.

COLOMBIA: "We are fighting the biggest monster, that is, the government."

 

 
 The diocese of Barrancabermeja provided the families of the victims burial plots, at the Garden of Silence cemetery, where eight of the returned remains 
are buried. Photo: Caldwell Manners/ECAP

 

 

Luz Almanza, Jaime Peña and Rocio Campos have more in common than living around the same football field, the site of one of Colombia’s most horrific massacres. On 16 May 1998, all three lost a family member. Their organizing in search of the disappeared and defiance of state impunity is what binds them.

Prayers for Peacemakers 16 May 2018 Colombia

Prayers for Peacemakers 16 May 2018  Colombia

Pray for human rights defender Lilia Peña and her family as they heal from the trauma of threats to their lives.

On 9 May 2018,  witnesses state that four masked and armed men entered the home of human rights defender Lilia Peña, threatening the lives of her elderly father, her housekeeper and two of her grandchildren. For approximately twenty minutes the armed men held the group at gunpoint repeating several times to Peña—who pleaded with them to take whatever they wanted but not harm anyone—“We´ve come here to kill you b***h.  Through the window she noticed another man who gave a signal to the men inside. The four men grabbed a laptop, a projector, three  cellphones and left.  As they left they shouted, “If you scream we will kill you.”

Peña, the co-founder of the Regional Association for Victims of State Crimes (Spanish acronym ASORVIMM) has received threats on numerous occasions.  In 2013 CPT accompanied Lilia for several days after someone threatened to throw a grenade into her house.  

Being a human rights activist like Lilia is an incredibly risky venture. According to the Colombian government's Human Rights Protection Office(Defensoria del Pueblo) from January 2016 to the 27th of February 2018, 282 community leaders and human rights activists have been murdered. 

CPT INTERNATIONAL: APPLY NOW for summer Colombia and Indigenous Peoples Solidarity delegations

 

 

 

The Christian Peacemaker Team Colombia and Indigenous Peoples Solidarity Delegations still have openings!  

Get your application in for the June 26-July 6, 2018 Colombia delegation by May 26.

Click here to apply.

COLOMBIA PHOTO ESSAY: Love for the land

 

 

From Barrancabermeja to the heart of Las Pavas.

This photo essay summarizes the experience of the Christian Peacemaker Teams (CPT) Holy Week delegation. It collects stories. Stories made into songs and memories that give an account of some dynamics and realities of the Magdalena Medio region, in particular the Las Pavas community.

Prayers for Peacemakers 11 April 2018 Colombia

Prayers for Peacemakers 11 April 2018  Colombia

Pray that in the upcoming presidential election, Colombians will vote with a heart of peace and not of stone.

On 11 March Colombians voted for a new congress and on 27 May they will vote for a new President. Ivan Duque, right wing presidential candidate supported by former President Alvaro Uribe, a staunch opponent of the agreement between the FARC and the government, promises to make changes that could drastically derail its implementation.  Duque and Uribe argue that the agreement is too lenient, that former guerrilla members did not receive enough punishment for their crimes.  They prefer a system where FARC ex-combatants are imprisoned rather than receive an alternative sentence in exchange for telling the truth and providing reparations to victims of the conflict. The international community has called the agreement one of the best in history.  

This ambivalence has created a climate of uncertainty in Colombia, generating new levels of violence not seen since the signing of the agreement over a year ago. Although the agreement does not resolve Colombia's issues of violence and injustice, it has helped to bring an end to the war and to shift the focus to the root issues of inequality.  The Colombians most at risk for violence need the agreement to endure.

COLOMBIA: Women’s Popular Organization denounces threats by paramilitary groups


The life and safety of Iris Paola Sánchez is at risk from armed groups and the Colombian authorities are not stepping up to protect her or other members of the Women’s Popular Organization (OFP), whom CPT-Colombia accompanies.

The extensive work of defending human rights carried out by the Women’s Popular Organization (OFP) is built on their almost half a century of experience in Colombia. Their commitment and professionalism has transformed them into one of the key human rights organizations in the region.   Their work has resulted in threats and direct attacks on their physical, psychological and spiritual integrity as well as the safety of their close relatives.