Rupture and Reconciliation in Colombia
In 1997, the Peace Community of San José de Apartadó in the North-West region of Urabá, Colombia, declared itself neutral to the five-decade armed conflict, a civilian protection strategy based on international humanitarian law. Since then, the community has suffered many killings and reprisals. In 2005, a massacre committed by paramilitaries and the Colombian army left eight people dead including three children. In response, the community declared themselves in ‘rupture’ with the Colombian state.
International human rights lawyer and mediator Kirsty Brimelow QC has been facilitating dialogue between the Colombian Government and the Peace Community. One result of this has been that on December 10th 2013, President Santos issued a historic formal apology to the community for stigmatisations made by his predecessor Álvaro Uribe. Anthropologist, Gwen Burnyeat, has worked with the Peace Community since 2011. She and Kirsty have now combined forces to work towards reconciliation between the Government and the community.
This seminar will discuss the challenges faced in the current climate of peace talks for reconciliation between the state and its victims. Jon Dew, diplomat and former British Ambassador to Colombia, will give his perspective on the on-going peace process in the country.
Friday 3rd July
6.30pm – 8pm
Doughty Street Chambers
53-54 Doughty Street
London WC1N 2LS
Gildardo Tuberquia Úsuga
Representative of the Internal Council of the Peace Community of San José de Apartadó
Former British Ambassador to Colombia
Masters candidate in Social Anthropology at Universidad Nacional de Colombia, Researcher on the Peace Community of San José de Apartadó
Kirsty Brimelow QC
Chair of the Bar Human Rights Committee of England and Wales; Doughty Street Chambers
Refreshments will be provided
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