The European Union has called on Colombia to keep its humanitarian situation at the head of its political agenda, specifically the 5 million Colombians displaced since 1985 as a result of the countries armed conflict.
Herve Delphin, the head of cabinet for the Office of the European Commissioner for Humanitarian Aid and Civil Protection, spoke at a conference on the E.U.’s response to Colombia’s decades-old armed conflict in Brussels on Tuesday.
“Coming to terms with the humanitarian needs of Colombia’s populations should remain at the top of the political agenda,” said Delphin according to newspaper El Espectador. He stressed that different parts of the country will need to show “responsibility and stability” in order to avoid more suffering for the victims of the conflict.
Delphin also stated that while “the reduction of combat will improve the lives of rural communities,” the humanitarian situation of the Colombians affected by the conflict needs to receive “immediate attention” in the peace talks between the government and left-wing rebel group FARC.
The head of cabinet described Colombia’s humanitarian shortcomings as the “antithesis” to the otherwise “shining” face of Colombia and called upon the government of President Juan Manuel Santos to dedicate more efforts and funds to cooperation programs.
The E.U. declarations come on the heels of the Red Cross’ presentation of its 2012 report which declared that Colombia’s humanitarian situation made no significant improvements since 2011.
- Unión Europea pide que situación humanitaria encabece agenda política en Colombia (El Espectador)
- The Colombian Conflict:Views from the Ground and the EU Response (EU agenda)