Indigenous and Social Organisations Fear Imminent Displacement

News from Colombia | on: Monday, 31 October 2011

Colombian human rights organisations have rejected the accusations made recently in Colombian media about peasant and indigenous communities living in Meta being “FARC families” settled there as a result of a FARC-led agrarian reform. In these reports it is claimed that the FARC had a strategy to settle the reason read more

Banana Workers On Strike

News from Colombia | on: Sunday, 30 October 2011

Banana workers in Puerto Wilches have been on strike for a month in protest at the banana plantation companies’ use of so-called ‘cooperatives of associated labour’ (CTA). In 2008 workers in the same area went on strike for the same reason, but despite some promised agreements, the CTA remain in read more

WOLA: 2011 Elections More Violent Than in 2007

News from Colombia | on: Sunday, 30 October 2011

Extract from Adam Isaacson's blog on Colombia elections. To read the article in full click here: The upcoming vote That is why the October 30 elections are so important. It is positive that the Santos administration has weakened the “Black Hand” at the national level. But the read more

USW Write to Clinton - New Threats to Trade Unionists are No Coincidence

News from Colombia | on: Monday, 24 October 2011

In a letter to Secretary of State Hillary Clinton the USW has expressed its concern at frech paramilitary death threats against Colombian trade unionists. The letter cites new threats received by trade unionists in Colombia on October 17th from a paramilitary group called the 'Black Eagles'. According to the USW read more

Mass Arrests and Displacement in Meta

News from Colombia | on: Monday, 24 October 2011

Colombian human rights organisations have reported a mass arrest in the municipality of Uribe in Meta Department. On the 16th October 2011 several peasant members of the ASOPROAJU agricultural workers’ union and other local traders, homeowners and young people were arrested by join army-police patrols. They are now being charged read more

21 Troops Killed in Bloody Weekend of Fighting

News from Colombia | on: Monday, 24 October 2011

Over the weekend 20 Colombian troops and one policeman were killed in FARC attacks in three separate parts of the country. At least 9 other troops were wounded. The attacks demonstrate that the FARC, often consigned to the dustbin of history over their 50-year existence, retain the capacity to inflict read more

Colombian Intelligence Files Show DAS Trained Paramilitaries

News from Colombia | on: Tuesday, 18 October 2011

It is well known that the DAS intelligence service passed information on trade unionists and human rights activists to paramilitaries, and that the DAS was also heavily involved in spying upon political opponents of the Uribe regime. However, new documents obtained by the Colombian weekly, Semana, show “a pattern of read more

US passes Colombia trade deal as violence against unions continues

News from Colombia | on: Sunday, 16 October 2011

UNI Global Union said that the votes in the US Congress to pass a trade deal with Colombia have sent the wrong message at the wrong time to the Colombian government. Insufficient progress has been made to improve human and trade union rights on the ground to justify this read more

Colombia FTA: Blood Won't Easily Be Washed Away

News from Colombia | on: Thursday, 13 October 2011

Rep. Luis Gutierrez Congressman Representing Illinois' 4th District in Chicago GET UPDATES FROM Rep. Luis Gutierrez When the Colombia Free Trade Agreement vote comes up in the House this Wednesday, I will ask my colleagues not to look to Columbia first when deciding to vote yes or no. read more

Student Killed by Bomb Thrown From Bridge

News from Colombia | on: Thursday, 13 October 2011

The Colombian National Student Roundtable (MANE) has reported that a student has been killed by a bomb thrown from a bridge overlooking a student demonstration in Cali. The bomb killed 4th year medical student Yan Farid Cheng Lugo, blowing his leg off and causing severe wounds to his abdomen. The read more

Peace Community Reports Paras Recruiting Children

News from Colombia | on: Wednesday, 12 October 2011

The San Jose Peace Community has yet again denounced the presence of paramilitaries in their region, describing how these are tolerated and supported by the armed forces, and how they control every aspect of life in the area. The Community complains that “week after week we see the growth of read more

The Caravan sets off Still No Agreement For Subcontracted Workers in Rubiales

News from Colombia | on: Wednesday, 12 October 2011

Since June the Rubiales oil field, which produces some 20% of Colombian oil, has been severely affected by the mobilisation of some 12,000 subcontracted workers protesting at poor working conditions that they claim amount to ‘slavery’. After beginning their dispute the workers joined the USO oil workers union, which has read more

Miners Await Company Response to Protest

News from Colombia | on: Tuesday, 11 October 2011

Sintramienergetica, the Colombian mining and energy sector union has reported the creation of a new section in the northern La Guajira region. The 300 workers and subcontractors for Carbones Colombianos de Cerrejon initiated a peaceful protest at their poor working conditions and pay. They took action after a modest set read more

Poster calling for national protest on 12th October Students Mobilise for National Day of Protest and Prepare for Repression

News from Colombia | on: Monday, 10 October 2011

Colombian student organisations grouped in the University Students Federation (FEU) have announced that since the Colombian government is insisting on putting the educational reforms to parliament, they will mobilise for a national day of protest on the 12-13th of October. This follows mobilisations across the country by students and read more

Riot police arrest a student Students Angrily Denounce Human Rights Abuses

News from Colombia | on: Monday, 10 October 2011

In an atmosphere of marked social mobilisation of students whose education is threatened by the proposed privatisation of public universities contained in the controversial reform to Law 30 of the Colombian constitution, the FEU national students’ union has denounced a series of recent abuses by troops of the notorious ESMAD read more

Congress of Lands, Territories, and Sovereignty Concludes in Cali

News from Colombia | on: Saturday, 8 October 2011

Between 30th September and 4th October the city of Cali in Southern Colombia played host to the Congress of Lands, Territories and Sovereignty. This Congress of a series of Colombian social organisations was called to debate solutions to the “fundamental problem” of land and its uses in Colombia. The delegates read more

Human Rights Watch Letter Criticises Lack of Progress in Dealing with Trade Union Killings

News from Colombia | on: Wednesday, 5 October 2011

In a recent letter to the Colombian Attorney General, Viviane Morales, Human Rights Watch has criticised “severe shortcomings” in how the Attorney General’s Office deals with the issue of trade union assassinations. In 2006, under heavy international pressure, the Colombian Attorney General’s Office established a special unit of prosecutors to read more

Ivan Cepeda with Iain McNicol, Labour Party General Secretary JFC Receives Huge Support at Labour Party Conference

News from Colombia | on: Monday, 3 October 2011

JFC hosted Colombian opposition Congressman Ivan Cepeda at Labour Party Conference with the support of several unions. He met with numerous trade union leaders, MPs and Labour Party figures, including Douglas Alexander MP, Shadow Foreign Secretary. Numerous MPs pledged their support for JFC and promised to up their involvement in read more

WOLA Report Criticises Santos

News from Colombia | on: Monday, 3 October 2011

The Washington Office on Latin America has released a report on President Santos' first year in office. Whilst recognising that there has been a positive change in the discourse of the government under Santos, and highlighting the positive potential of some measures, the report criticises the continuing abuses and impunity, read more

UNDP Report on Rural Colombia

News from Colombia | on: Sunday, 2 October 2011

Latest UNDP Report on Colombia: 'It's the Rural Economy, Stupid.' Nazih Richani Cuadernos Colombianos September 26, 2011 UNDPThe United Nations Development Programme’s (UNDP) latest report on Colombia, released last week, reaffirmed what experts have claimed for a very long time: that the core of Colombia’s problems lies read more

Study: Colombia Anti-Union Violence Undeterred

News from Colombia | on: Sunday, 2 October 2011

Frank Bajak BOGOTA, Colombia — A new study challenges claims from the administration of President Barack Obama that Colombia is making important strides in bringing to justice killers of labor activists and so deserves U.S. congressional approval of a long-stalled free trade pact. The Human Rights Watch study found "virtually read more