SCoPE Seminar: Is Colombia marching to a post conflict era?

Posted on 8 March 2019

Speakers: Oscar Bernal, Catalina Gonzalez, Universidad de los Andes

Date: Wednesday 20 March 14:30 – 15:45

Location: The Professor Alan Maynard Auditorium (ARC/014)

The Colombia conflict was never a simple two-way fight between the government and the FARC. It remains a set of overlapping conflicts involving the government, rebels, para military groups, gangs and drug cartels.  The 2016 FARC deal was a historic achievement, and while the new president (Ivan Duque) says that his government will not destroy the agreement, he promised changes in some of the key points of this agreement. Furthermore, the landscape of the FARC’s territorial control has simply changed since the 2016 deal, with the ELN and other armed groups taking over.  A deadly car bomb at a Bogotá police academy claimed by the ELN, is the latest sign that Colombia’s civil war is not over.

The initial findings of the Universidad de los Andes (Uniandes) and York University “War and Peace” project originate from the qualitative research the project team has conducted with participants of the ‘Health for Peace’ programme in Colombia led by IOM (International Organization for Migration). This programme was delivered as part of the efforts to strengthen local capacities for the promotion and guarantee of health rights in 26 municipalities denominated Territorial Training and Reincorporation Spaces (ETCR), which are places located in rural areas and “serve to train the members of the FARC-EP for their reincorporation into civil life, prepare productive projects and meet the technical training needs of the surrounding communities, in a community reincorporation model” (ARN, 2019).

For this seminar, Professor Oscar Bernal and Professor Catalina Gonzalez will present the results from interviews and focus groups with health professionals, community and health promoter trainees of diverse backgrounds including men and women, FARC ex combatants, victims and stakeholders in Colombia.  These participants have in common that they have lived or worked in or near Territorial Training and Reincorporation Spaces (ETCR). Through their voices, the project team analyse reported health services provision and community strategies to cope with health problems during conflict time, and aim to understand the impact of the Peace Agreement in the community with respect to health outcomes and services provision.

Further information about the “War & Peace” project: https://www.york.ac.uk/research/themes/colombia-health/