Prayers for Peacemakers 11 April 2018 Colombia
Pray that in the upcoming presidential election, Colombians will vote with a heart of peace and not of stone.
On 11 March Colombians voted for a new congress and on 27 May they will vote for a new President. Ivan Duque, right wing presidential candidate supported by former President Alvaro Uribe, a staunch opponent of the agreement between the FARC and the government, promises to make changes that could drastically derail its implementation. Duque and Uribe argue that the agreement is too lenient, that former guerrilla members did not receive enough punishment for their crimes. They prefer a system where FARC ex-combatants are imprisoned rather than receive an alternative sentence in exchange for telling the truth and providing reparations to victims of the conflict. The international community has called the agreement one of the best in history.
This ambivalence has created a climate of uncertainty in Colombia, generating new levels of violence not seen since the signing of the agreement over a year ago. Although the agreement does not resolve Colombia’s issues of violence and injustice, it has helped to bring an end to the war and to shift the focus to the root issues of inequality. The Colombians most at risk for violence need the agreement to endure.