“Almost 50 years of armed conflict and the existence of drug cartels in Colombia have caused a large number of internally displaced [people], many of whom are in Soacha,” a press release published by the Japanese government stated.
Soacha “is afflicted by the menaces of extreme poverty, unemployment, social and sexual violence and a deficient in access to basic social services,” says the press release, as reason for the Japanese government, along with the UN, to provide assistance in improving social conditions and local governance, as well as access to quality social services.
The initiative will include a focus on the rights of women, children and the displaced by bolstering health and education services, as well as “food security,” the press release explains.
The program will receive support from UN Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO), United Nations International Children’s Fund (UNICEF) and the Pan American Health Organization. The program is backed by the United Nations Trust Fund for Human Security, established in 1999 thanks to Japanese funding.
Soacha is infamous for being the town that blew the lid off the “false positives” scandal, when in September 2008, members of the Colombian armed forces were accused of kidnapping and murdering eleven young men from the municipality, and presenting them as guerrillas killed in combat.