Security Exchange News

News By Category: COLOMBIA

Anti-government protests erupt over tax reforms

10 May 2021

Tens of thousands of Colombians have been gathering in massive nationwide protests which enveloped the country since 28 April. Defying a 20:00 curfew and risking Covid-19 infection, the demonstrators have been gathering to protest a controversial tax reform bill passed by President Ivan Duque on 15 April. Across more than a week of protests, the demonstrators have burned buses and police stations, looted banks and shops and even blocked all of the main roads leading to Cali; the country’s third largest city. This has left Cali with dozens of empty grocery shops and a general shortage of medicine in the city. In an effort to curb the violence, President Duque deployed troops to the largest gatherings. At least 24 people have died, more than 800 civilians and officers have been injured and more than 400 have been arrested.

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Threat From Abroad

19 April 2018

The demobilisation of the Revolutionary Armed Forces of Colombia (FARC) was a key milestone in South America’s recent history. The FARC insurgency in Colombia finally ended after almost half a century of conflict. More than 8,000 FARC militants handed over their weapons and engaged in a lengthy process to be reintroduced to civilian life. However, some fighters chose not to abide by the peace deal and instead continue to use violence to secure strategic drug-trafficking territory. Colombian authorities revealed that as many as 1,200 dissident FARC members are still active across 23 fronts spread nationwide – some claim the number is much higher – especially in Guaviare and Meta departments. In recent months, there has been an intensification of militant activity in southern Colombia, especially along the porous border with Ecuador.

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Colombia: ELN Peace Talks Fade

31 January 2018

In October 2017, the Colombian government and the National Liberation Army (ELN) agreed to initiate talks over a ceasefire deal. The ELN - Colombia’s largest guerrilla group since the demobilisation of the Revolutionary Armed Forces of Colombia (FARC) – ceased its campaign of violence against state security forces and state-owned infrastructure, while President Juan Manuel Santos put a halt to the military crackdown against the group. The long-awaited agreement came amid peace negotiations held in Quito, Ecuador, and the official visit of Pope Francis to Colombia.

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Latin America in 2018

10 January 2018

In 2017 there were several transformative political developments across Latin America, including the improvements to Colombia’s security situation and the Odebrecht corruption scandal which implicated political and business figures across the region. Throughout 2018 Colombia will continue to face important security and political challenges, with peace negotiations shifting from the Revolutionary Armed Forces of Colombia (FARC) to the National Liberation Army (ELN). Brazil will face its first presidential elections since Dilma Rousseff was impeached, while Ecuador and Peru are both engulfed in deep political tensions after high-level officials were implicated in the Odebrecht scandal. Cuba and Haiti will attempt to recover from weather-related catastrophes occurred during one of the most active Atlantic hurricane seasons in recent history. Venezuela faces further uncertainty ahead of the presidential vote, which some opposition parties barred from running in. We also look at Mexico, which starts the year after recording the country’s highest-ever levels of cartel-generated violence in 2017.

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A Farewell to Arms?

12 December 2017

In June President Juan Manuel Santos officially declared the end of the insurgency by the Revolutionary Armed Forces of Colombia (FARC). “Our peace is real, and it’s irreversible,” said Santos in a statement at the UN.

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