Southwest Colombia: Key challenges for peace

German-Colombian Peace Institute (CAPAZ) publishes first research findings. In spotlight: the port city of Tumaco.

Deutsch-Kolumbianisches Friedensinstitut / Instituto Colombo-Alemán para la Paz (CAPAZ) (Foto: CAPAZ)

The German-Colom­bian Peace Institute (Instituto CAPAZ) has pub­lished its first working paper on the dynamics of armed conflict in the port city of Tumaco in south­western Colombia. Even after the 2016 peace agree­ment between the Colom­bian govern­ment and the guerrilla movement Fuerzas Armadas Revo­luciona­rias de Colombia – Ejército del Pueblo (FARC-EP), violence con­tinues to erupt there, as illegal groups compete for control of the illegal eco­nomy and engage in clashes with state secu­rity forces.

As the authors Luis Gabriel Salas Salazar, Fabián Eduardo Camelo (both Univer­sidad Nacional de Colombia) and Jonas Wolff (HSFK) impres­sively demon­strate with their presen­tation of local develop­ments from 1990 to 2017, the Tumaco region is thus an example of the most impor­tant chal­lenges faced by the Colom­bian peace process.

The Instituto CAPAZ was founded in 2016 by ten univer­sities and research insti­tutions from Colombia and Germany, with the partici­pation of PRIF, in order to gather know­ledge about the causes, dynamics and conse­quences of the Colombian conflict, to initiate social de­bates and thus support the peace process.

On No­vember 22, 2018, CAPAZ will host a panel dis­cussion entitled "Kolumbien: Beiträge der Lateinamerika-Forschung zum Friedensprozess" at the Institute for Latin Ame­rican Studies at Freie Universität Berlin. In addition to an in-depth discussion on contem­porary research on Colombia in Germany, ten academic experts will present their current research and comment on the main problems and perspec­tives in the peace process from their perspec­tive.