Student - November 24, 2015

Peace in Colombia, and then what?

Roelof Kleis

What does the possible peace in Colombia mean for the development of the countryside. In Forum a three day symposium will take place on this issue.

The peace talks in the Cuban Havana are currently in a critical phase. Last month a provisional agreement was realised between the negotiators of the FARC and the Colombian government. Reason for the Boerengroep and the chair group Sociology of Development and Change to organize a symposium.

The symposium (Rural development, peace talks and peace-building in Colombia) will take place in the evenings of Wednesday, Thursday and Friday. There program includes lectures and conversations with Colombian parliamentarians, representatives of farmers associations, the director of the Land Restitution Office and a teacher of the Externado University. The series will conclude on Friday with a skype conversation with the FARC negotiators in Havana.

Aside from the formal elements there is also room for movies, photography and music. The kick-off will take place on Wednesday afternoon with the opening of a photo exposition Ruralities in Orion (the Spot). On Wednesday (Forum) and Friday (Orion) short films will be screened from the Colombian film maker Mario Niño Villamizar. The symposium will be concluded with a Latin Peace Party in Orion which will last until late at night.

One of the initiators of the symposium is Julian Cortes, a former political prisoner who is currently following a master study in Wageningen. Resource spoke with him last month in response to the developments in the peace process. In Wageningen Cortes is forming a group that will perform research on the implementation of peace in Columbian countryside’s.