As the Colombian peace talks proceed, some communities have attempted to move closer to resolving the country’s decades-old violence by maintaining an active and credible distance from all major parties of the conflict.
With few exceptions, most international media coverage of the recent protests in Venezuela gives little sense of the response from the popular social movement actors who support the Maduro government but operate independently from it.
As we approach the end of the year, Red Hot Burning Peace takes the opportunity to report on some overlooked stories from the last couple of months and tie up some loose ends, covering President Santos' apology to the comunidad de Paz de San Jose de Apartado, Drummond's fine, Petro's ongoing battle for reinstatement, and the current FARC ceasefire.
Bogotá has been rocked by indignados protesting the past two weeks due to a possibly unconstitutional removal of the city's Mayor Gustavo Petro. The Procurador Alejandro Ordoñez was behind the move, banning him from holding public office for 15 years. But the institutional force behind Ordoñez, and the consequences the removal will have in the new year, remain to be seen.
Over the weekend thousands of campesinos, indigenous, and Afro-descendants gathered in the city of Barrancabermeja to call on the Colombian government and the insurgency to begin peace negotiations. The insurgency has expressed their willingness to talk, but the Santos government has yet to even explore the possibility. In order to understand why, we have to analyze the core obstacles that have confronted government peace negotiations with the FARC and the ELN since the mid-1980s.