The Colombian and Ecuadorian governments have reached an amicable agreement to end the aerial spraying of herbicides on illicit crops near the countries’ border, the Colombian government confirmed on Monday.
According to Christian Aid Colombia, Colombia is the only country in the world that allows the aerial spraying of illicit crops, which can be damaging not only to legal farm crops but also to the health of local people.
The aerial spraying campaign was recently highlighted by Christian Aid Colombia’s campaign of awareness regarding the dangers of aerial spraying to the Embera people, a population located in the northwestern department of Choco.
The Ministry of Defense announced that “the Colombian government is satisfied to reach a joint solution with Ecuador, in order to continue building a positive agenda between the two brotherly countries, in the prime of their bilateral relationship.”
It added that “the Agreement also provides Ecuador with a financial contribution, which will aim to promote the social and economic development of the border areas, prioritized by Presidents Juan Manuel Santos and Rafael Correa at the Bi-national Cabinet meeting held last December 11 in Ecuador.”
Ecuador had originally launched a complaint to the international court in The Hague against Colombia, after the administration of former president Alvaro Uribe indiscriminately sprayed areas in Ecuador without prior consultation.
Colombian newspaper El Espectador reported that the Ecuadorian government was “very pleased” with the new arrangement, saying that Santos’ administration had been “much more respectful” in its attitudes towards relations with Ecuador.
- Chemical-spraying of indigenous people’s land threatens children’s futures (Christian Aid Colombia)
- Comunicado del Ministerio de Relaciones Exteriores (Defence Ministry)
- Colombia confirma acuerdo con Ecuador para terminar juicio por fumigaciones (El Espectador)