Women Defending Peace in Colombia–A Gendered, Environmental, and Rural Perspective
Angélica Romero Villalba, Collective Association Women in Law (ASOCOLEMAD)
Jani Rita Silva De Rengifo, Network We are Genesis (Somos Génesis)
Diana María Salcedo López, Women’s International League for Peace and Freedom (WILPF/LIMPAL COLOMBIA)
Introductions by Gimena Sanchez-Garzoli, WOLA and Steve Hege, USIP
Moderation by Lisa Haugaard, Latin America Working Group Education Fund (LAWGEF)
Eight months into his presidency, Gustavo Petro is advancing with a “total peace” policy that seeks to comprehensively end the armed conflict in Colombia. This policy involves the implementation of the 2016 peace accord with the Revolutionary Armed Forces of Colombia (FARC), negotiate a separate agreement with the National Liberation Army (ELN), and incentivizing the dismantling of other illegal armed groups linked to illicit economies. Beyond demobilizing and dismantling illegal armed groups, total peace involves a whole-of-government and society approach that seeks to end the root causes of conflict by advancing major reforms in Colombian society, many of which were already initiated as part of the 2016 accords. The premise is to construct peace from diverse regions of the Andean nation to the national level, involving the active participation of all sectors of society, integrating a gendered, Afrodescendant, Indigenous and rural approach that is environmentally sustainable. This ambitious effort attempts to integrate and correct the lessons learned from the country’s many peace and demobilization processes.
Join us to hear from three amazing female activists to learn about how they are advancing the peace, women’s rights, security, and a human rights agenda in their regions. The three women are representing the winners, organizations and social processes awarded the 2022 Colombia National Human Rights Prize. This prestigious annual prize, organized by Diakonia and the Church of Sweden, began eleven years ago with the purpose of elevating the work of Colombian human rights defenders. In Colombia, which has the tragic record of being the country where the most social leaders, human rights defenders, and environmental activists are killed, the prize serves to elevate the importance of their work.
ASOCOLEMAD is an organization based in Magdalena (Colombia’s Caribbean coast) which litigates emblematic crimes against humanity that affected women and girls. It is dedicated to advancing the United Nations’ Security Council Resolution 1325 on women, peace, and security. Romero Villalba represents ASOCOLEMAD’s agenda before ECOSOC.
We are Genesis is a network composed of over 160 rural and grassroots organizational and community initiatives. Its objective is to achieve truth, justice, and guarantees of non-repetition for Black, Indigenous, and peasant communities, women, youth, children, and social networks in Antioquia, Cauca, Chocó, Nariño, Putumayo, and Valle del Cauca. Jani Silva is an environmental defender who has dedicated her life to protecting life in the Amazon from illegal armed groups and multinational companies.
LIMPAL is a feminist, pacifist, and anti-militarist organization that has promoted peacebuilding in Colombia for 24 years. The organization is the Colombian chapter of the Women´s International League for Peace and Freedom (WILPF) movement, which is recognized as the oldest women’s pacifist organization in the world, with 107 years of peace activism in 45 countries. Salcedo López serves as representative before the Intersectoral Commission for Security Guarantees for Female Defenders and Leaders and as national representative for the Special High Instance for Gender that monitors the 2016 peace accord.
Wednesday, April 19, 2023
Washington Office on Latin America
1666 Connecticut Ave, NW, 4th Floor, Washington, DC
To join virtually, register here.
The event will be in Spanish with simultaneous interpretation available.