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Humanitarian challenges in Colombia one year after the Peace Agreement

Although armed confrontations in Colombia have decreased significantly since the Peace Agreement between the Colombian government and the Colombian Revolutionary Armed Forces–People’s Army (FARC-EP), the armed conflict continues. The Colombian Victims Unit reported that nearly 77,000 people were victims of the conflict and violence in 2017.

Also in 2017, the International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC) followed up on more than 550 cases of recent violations of international humanitarian law and international human rights law and carried out 14 emergency humanitarian operations.  

00:07 – 00:25 Images of the rural area El Carmen, Norte de Santander, Colombia. Footage taken on 20 December 2017.

00:26 – 00:36 FULL of Albeiro Urán, farmer from the rural area El Carmen, Norte de Santander. In April 2017, he had to leave his home for three months with his wife, two-year-old daughter, parents, sister and a cousin. 

“I don’t think we have peace, because when it’s not one group causing trouble, it’s another. I mean, we don’t see peace yet.”

00:37 – 00:44 Albeiro Urán’s shoes and hands

00:45 – 01:14 FULL of Albeiro Urán, farmer from the rural area El Carmen, Norte de Santander. “The conflict has really affected us. Not just us, but many others. It has been like this for a while here. First it was one group, and then another. As I said, today they call themselves one thing and tomorrow they’ll be called something else. We farmers don’t have much to do with any of the groups. We try to avoid getting involved, you never know what they might do.

01:15 – 01:29 Albeiro Urán’s face.

1:30 – 1:55 FULL of Albeiro Urán, farmer from the rural area El Carmen, Norte de Santander. “I think that many of us in the Catatumbo region are affected by the violence. Like I said, we feel really abandoned by the State. In health, in education, in everything. And have you seen the state of the roads? We’re the ones repairing them practically by hand with hoes, picks and spades.”

01:56 – 02:06 People in the river and on the streets in the centre of Quibdó, Chocó, western Colombia. Footage taken on 9 May 2017.

02:07 – 02:12 Elizabeth goes down the stairs in her house in Quibdó, Chocó.

02:13 – 02:18 Elizabeth shows a photo of her son, Heyler, who has been missing for eight years.

02:29 – 02:41 FULL of Elizabeth: “I say, ‘There are so many missing people’, and there are people who, out of spite or ignorance, say, ‘Oh, that’s nothing’. But it’s because they don’t know war. It's really tough.” 

02:42 – 02:56 Elizabeth looks out of the window, rocking in a rocking chair.

02:57 – 03:16 FULL of Elizabeth: “I just say, ‘Oh, my son. I would love to see him, I would love for him to come home.’ You feel utterly powerless and you burst into tears. You’re in turmoil.” 

03:17 – 03:36 Bogotá, Colombia. Outside the ICRC delegation. Footage taken on 13 February 2018.

03:37 – 03:47 Christoph Harnisch, head of the ICRC delegation in Colombia, working in his office in Bogotá.

03:48 – 04:01 FULL of Christoph Harnisch: “The road out of war is long and complex. In the field, we are seeing violations of international humanitarian law and human rights.”

04:02 – 04:16 FULL of Christoph Harnisch: “There has been a lack of speed and ambition in implementing the Peace Agreement made in Havana. In this sense, there is a certain amount of frustration, particularly on the ground.”

04:17 – 04:39 FULL of Christoph Harnisch: “What is needed right now to implement the Peace Agreement is more speed, more ambition, and the political will of not only the government but all political classes and political parties.”

04:40 – 04:54 FULL of Christoph Harnisch: “Regardless of who is elected to parliament or to the presidency, what matters is that political parties put the victims at the centre of their platforms.”

04:55 – 05:38 Internally displaced people in a rural area of Riosucio, Chocó. Footage taken on 4 April 2017.

05:38 – 07:01 The ICRC distributes emergency humanitarian aid to people affected by the fighting and the presence of armed groups in a rural area of Riosucio, Chocó.

07:02 – 07:11 ICRC vehicles travel through a rural area of Chocó. Footage taken in April 2017.

07:12 – 07:45 ICRC vehicle travels by ferry in a rural area in the south of Bolívar. Footage taken on 5 October 2017.

For more information, please contact Isabel Ortigosa +57 311 491 0789.



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