Sunday, March 30, 2008

This week in Colombia

This week I was assigned to collect the coyuntura which translates to something like the current situation. So I read a lot of different news sources cut pasted and summarized. So here is what happened in, or pertained to Colombia this week.

Five families are suing Chiquita brands for the deaths of their husbands because Chiquita Brands was paying the FARC for protection and they were kidnapped and killed by the FARC.

Ingrid Betancourt who was a leftist presidential candidate and dual french citizen is in bad health. She was kidnapped by the FARC in 2002. The Colombian gov has offered to eliminate many of the restrictions for prisoner exchanges in order to work out a deal with the FARC.

The problems between Colombia and its neighbors continue. At the beginning of this week Ecuador was accusing Colombia of murdering one of its citizens who was completely innocent during the cross border raid four weeks ago. However by the end of the week it came out the the Ecuadorian had actually been helping the FARC.

President Bush is trying to push through the Free Trade Agreement with Colombia. It will probably be reintroduced in the Congress on Tuesday.

In the Washington Post there was an article about extra judicial killings in Colombia. The newest PBI bulletin is also about this theme the English version should be out soon I will post a link when it is .

In more personal news. Alessandra(an Italian who got here at the same time as me) and I did do a couple of things on our own. We have weekly meeting with some of the organizations that we accompany and we went to one of those by ourselves. We also tried to accompany a lawyer from one of the lawyers groups that we accompany to a hearing but when we got there it was postponed.

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