Las convocatorias y comunicados de este blog se publican en español, inglés y francés.

Details about the vigils and the supporting documents follow in spanish, english and french.

Les convocations et les communiqués de ce blog sont aussi publiés en espagnol, anglais et français.

24/4/08

CONVOCATION 27 April 2008: FACING THE ARMED CONFLICT IN COLOMBIA


The last Sunday of the month in the Plaza Mayor (next to the horse statue) at 12:00 noon
Women in Black
invite you to a vigil in black and in silence.

27 APRIL 2008

FACING THE ARMED CONFLICT IN COLOMBIA

The armed conflict affects the lives of the people in a general way and has particular impacts on the lives of women and female adolescents and children in that the forms of gender discrimination and violence are exacerbated in the midst of the conflict.

WOMEN IN BLACK AGAINST WAR (of Madrid)

We ask for:

The government of Spain to apply the conditionality clause regarding human rights in their treaties regarding commerce and trade. We reject all manner of military cooperation and agreements and sale of arms.

The government of Colombia to put an end to the social militarization the country is experiencing and to fulfill its obligations and demonstrate the will to reach a humanitarian accord.

The guerrillas to stop the utilization of kidnapping and sexual violations as weapons of war and to demonstrate their will to achieve a political negotiated outcome to the conflict in order to draw a halt to the deteriorating conditions and negative impact on the civil population.

Let us expel war from history and from our lives

C/ San Cosme y San Damián, Nº 24, 2º
28012 – Madrid
...................................................................................


Women in Black Against War – Madrid facing the ARMED CONFLICT IN COLOMBIA

Colombia is a country rich in culture and natural resources and scenic beauty occupying a privileged geographical position in Latin America. Caught up in the imposition of a neo-liberal economy and the construction of mega-projects for infrastructure, growing imbalances in the population have been profound, generating increasing vulnerability and inequality of opportunity.

Over 50 years ago, an armed conflict broke out flamed by deep social, economic, political and cultural roots. All parties to the conflict -- Public Forces, paramilitary groups, guerrilla groups – commit human rights violations and infractions of International Humanitarian Law.

Much of the international assistance, far from resolving the conflict and stopping drug-trafficking, intensifies the war and the deterioration of the conditions of life of the population, who are being fumigated, massacred, kidnapped and displaced from their land. In the last 20 years, the conflict has taken the lives of at least 70,000 persons, the great majority of whom were civilians who were taking no part in the hostilities. In addition, 3,00,000 people have been internally displaced, hundreds kidnapped and thousands forcibly disappeared.

At present, the government of Mr. Uribe, with his policy of Democratic Security, has adopted a series of measures that privilege and strengthen military power to the detriment of civil institutions. Said policy has contributed to worsening a situation of insecurity because of the growing militarization of civilian life and, what is worse, puts the pressure on them to become involved in the conflict on the side of the armed actors, the Army included.

The armed conflict has special effects on the lives of women and female adolescents and children in that the forms of gender discrimination and violence are exacerbated and intensified in the midst of the conflict. In addition to the forms and methods of torture applied to the populace in general, women suffer special humiliations and violations related to their gender. They are subjected to intimidation, maltreatment and threats. Mothers and wives who see their husbands or sons assassinated are witnesses to these atrocities and become targets of the military in order to forestall their denouncing the facts or demanding justice.
In various parts of the country, women’s organizations are accused of criminal activity. Sexual violence in its various forms increases, a practice used by all the armed actors. This past 6 March, 15 female human rights activists were threatened after a national mobilization in solidarity with the victims, and this has resulted in a deepening of the humanitarian crisis.

Forced displacement is largely feminine with women and infants representing 70% of the displaced persons, of whom 51% are mothers who are head of household (the great majority of victims being men). All the human rights of the displaced persons are being systematically violated.

Amid the contrasts in Colombia and the savagery of war, thousands of women, both rural and urban, indigenous women and women of African descent, professionals, academics, members of labor unions and feminists have overcome fear and created a great social movement of women against war.

WOMEN IN BLACK AGAINST WAR support the Social Movement of Women for Peace, as we are convinced that a humanitarian accord and a negotiated outcome to the social and armed conflict is imperative and is possible only with the active participation of these women. For this reason, we demand:

That the government of Spain apply the conditionality clause regarding human rights in treaties on commerce and trade. We reject all manner of military cooperation and sale of arms.

That the media, especially PRISA y Planeta, not manipulate the facts of the reality of Colombia and that they fulfill their journalistic duties in an ethical manner and not disregard reporting on the work of the Social Movement of Women.

That the government of Colombia put an end to the social militarization the country is experiencing, which polarizes and intensifies the war to the detriment of the Right to Development, Justice and Liberty . And we demand that the government comply with its obligations and facilitate political negotiation to achieve peace, based on truth, justice and reparation, and taking into account the participation of women as set forth in UN Resolution 1325. A good start is to demonstrate the will to reach a humanitarian accord.

That the guerrillas cease the utilization of kidnapping and sexual violations as weapons of war and that they demonstrate their will to achieve a political and negotiated outcome to the conflict in order to draw a halt to deteriorating conditions and the negative impact on the civil population.

We women do not bear sons and daughters for war

Translation: Trisha Novak, USA

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