Days of Prayer and Action 2015 Petition
[two_third]For the 2015 Days of Prayer and Action for Colombia, advocates are encouraged to sign this petition which will be shared with President Obama and members of Congress:[/two_third]
[one_third_last][sf_button colour=”black” type=”standard” size=”large” link=”https://docs.google.com/forms/d/1j20dahcoxznV5MjvHnyf6ZajwBRxOdP9Ki6RZ81KiZI/viewform” target=”_blank” icon=”” dropshadow=”no” extraclass=””]SIGN NOW[/sf_button][/one_third_last]
For over fifty years, Colombia has been engaged in an internal armed conflict that has left millions of victims and a country yearning for peace. Colombians have suffered through unspeakable violence, forced displacements, kidnappings, widespread massacres, threats against unionists and human rights activists, and the social exclusion of indigenous, Afro-descendant, and rural communities. As part of the National Days of Prayer and Action for Colombia, we applaud our government’s support of the peace process in Colombia and we gather with one message in mind: Tomorrow’s Peace Starts Today. For the Days of Prayer and Action for Colombia on May 15-18, activists around the country are gathering to advocate for U.S. policies that will work with Colombians to end the armed conflict and support a durable peace. We advocate for U.S. policy that will:
• Support a bilateral cease fire and a commitment from all parties to respect international humanitarian law even as negotiations proceed so as to protect the civilian populations still caught in the crossfire, especially the most vulnerable—Indigenous and Afro-Colombian communities, women and children, and farmers in rural areas.
• Ensure that all assistance is carefully directed to support peace. Instead of military aid, assistance should be transformed to support peace accord implementation, address humanitarian needs, and strengthen civilian institutions.
• Refocus counter-drug policy to prioritize alternative and sustainable development policies with input from small farmers.
• Call on the Colombian government to provide protection for human rights defenders and rural communities now and after peace is negotiated. The United States must press the Colombian government to denounce the increasing number of threats and attacks against victims’ representatives, land rights leaders, faith leaders, human rights defenders, Afro-Colombian and indigenous leaders, and peace advocates.
• Press for the establishment of an independent truth commission to find and reveal the full truth about who implemented, ordered, financed and promoted the human rights violations and violence against the civilian population.
• Reaffirm the role of victims’ associations, faith organizations, and civil society organizations in constructing peace. These organizations can and should play a vital role in implementing and monitoring peace accords, advancing reconciliation, assisting victims to rebuild their lives, reintegrating former combatants and rebuilding the societal fabric that war has torn asunder.
Our diverse beliefs, faith traditions and civic commitments compel us to speak at this critical juncture. U.S. support is crucial for addressing the displacement crisis, supporting victims of violence, providing diplomatic support and protecting those working for peace as Colombia navigates through this historic moment. We cannot simply wait for the ink to dry on a signed peace agreement. The foundation for peace must begin today, paving the way for a successful transition after the accords are signed. Colombians deserve a chance for peace. Now is the time for U.S. policy that promotes a peaceful and just end to this decades-long conflict. We urge you to rise to meet this challenge.
[sf_button colour=”black” type=”standard” size=”large” link=”https://docs.google.com/forms/d/1j20dahcoxznV5MjvHnyf6ZajwBRxOdP9Ki6RZ81KiZI/viewform” target=”_blank” icon=”” dropshadow=”no” extraclass=””]SIGN NOW[/sf_button]