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Thousands of people newly displaced in Colombia

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More than 2,000 people have been forcibly displaced due to conflict between armed groups in the northern departments of Cordoba and Antioquia during the last two weeks alone.

As Colombia marks National Victims’ Day today, remembering the millions who have suffered in the long-lasting conflict, 7.4 million have been displaced from their homes while 5.1 million need humanitarian assistance. The six decades-long armed conflict has affected close to 9 million people.

“Despite the peace agreement, we see that security in Colombia cannot be guaranteed in areas controlled by armed groups. As a consequence, people continue to be forced to flee their homes and fall into poverty and suffering. With one of the most sophisticated legal frameworks in the world, the Government is still far from ensuring that civilians affected by violent conflict and in need are not ignored, not cast aside and not left ruined,” said Christian Visnes, country director for the Norwegian Refugee Council (NRC) in Colombia.

The security situation in many places in Colombia is only deteriorating and is now more complex than when the peace agreement with FARC-EP was signed in 2016, according to recent report by the International Committee of the Red Cross. Colombians living in displacement do not receive enough help and assistance to restart their lives. Many who have been displaced for years still struggle to access adequate housing, employment and services.

“The Government must take immediate action to ensure that displaced people are treated humanely and receive the support they need. The current administration should also guarantee the victims seats in Congress as agreed in the peace accord to ensure lasting peace across Colombia,” urged Visnes.