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  1. The ‘deja vú’ of aerial crop spraying in Colombia

    Nicolás Martínez Rivera
    29 Febrero 2020
    Article

    At the end of 2019 the government of Iván Duque presented a draft decree to resume the spraying of drug crops used for illicit purposes. It argued that spraying is the only instrument to curb the increase in coca crops.

  2. Growers' voices at the Commission on Narcotic Drugs

    Sai Lone, Pedro Arenas
    24 Noviembre 2019
    Declaration

    From 16 to 18 October 2019, representatives of member states, intergovernmental organisations, and civil society attended the 6th Intersessional Meeting of the Commission on Narcotic Drugs. On 17 October 2019, representatives of coca and opium growers from Colombia and Myanmar delivered statements highlighting the situation of communities involved in the illicit cultivation of coca and opium in both countries. Below are their full statements.

  3. The Challenges of Medicinal Cannabis in Colombia

    • Nicolás Martínez Rivera
    29 Octubre 2019
    Policy briefing

    In July 2016, the Colombian government enacted Law 1787, which regulates the use of medicinal cannabis and its trade in the country. With this decision and a series of subsequent resolutions, Colombia joined the more than a dozen countries that have put into practice different types of regulation to explore the advantages of this plant as an alternative pharmaceutical.

  4. Thumbnail Amapola, opio y heroína

    Poppies, opium, and heroin: Production in Colombia and Mexico

    • Guillermo Andrés Ospina, Jorge Hernández Tinajero, Martin Jelsma
    16 Abril 2018
    Report

    Poppy cultivation in Mexico and Colombia is part of a local economy geared almost exclusively toward the illegal market abroad: it is driven by demand for heroin, primarily in the United States.

  5. Colombia Gold

    13 Octubre 2017
    Multi-media

    Together with the Cannabis News Network, Martin Jelsma travelled to Colombia to report on the newly emerging medical cannabis industry in the country, specifically looking at the impacts of private investment and licensing on farmers and indigenous communities.

  6. Open Letter To President Juan Manuel Santos About Coca Eradication in Colombia

    International Drug Policy Consortium (IDPC)
    22 Agosto 2017
    Declaration

    In a letter to Colombian President Juan Manuel Santos, the International Drug Policy Consortium (IDPC), a global network of 177 NGOs, expresses strong support for the Peace Accord signed by the Colombian government and the FARC, while also expressing deep concern regarding intensified, and increasingly militarized, forced coca eradication efforts, especially in areas where communities have already signed crop substitution agreements.

  7. Ómar with his coffee plants

    Coca and the Colombian Peace Accords

    Martin Jelsma, Coletta Youngers
    11 Agosto 2017
    Article

    Getting to the Briceño region in the heart of Antioquia requires an excellent vehicle, and a lot of time and luck. The week before our journey there in mid-July, heavy rains wiped out part of the road between Briceño and Pueblo Nuevo, stranding folks on one side or the other. We were lucky on the day of our journey – no rain. But it took a six-hour drive to get from Medellín to Briceño, and another three hours of sometimes harrowing curves to Pueblo Nuevo. The dirt-road drive itself was a stark reminder of the challenges Colombia faces as it seeks to eliminate 50,000 hectares of coca this year through the crop substitution program, Programa Nacional Integral de Sustitución de Cultivos de Uso Ilícito (National Comprehensive Program for the Substitution of Illicit Crops), known by the acronym PNIS.

  8. Timeline - Fumigation in Colombia

    30 Septiembre 2015
    Infograph

    For 37 years Colombia has been spraying chemicals to combat illicit crops, particularly coca. These massive eradication programmes became part of the US-backed 'War on Drugs'. The fumigations are controversial for their proven inefficacy to reduce supply and demand for the use of herbicides such as glyphosate.

  9. With marijuana price down 70%, Colombia growers are bailing

    13 Julio 2015
    Other news

    On a farm in the central Andean mountains of Colombia, workers are digging up marijuana bushes and replacing them with avocados.

  10. Colombia says rise in coca cultivation shows why it was right to stop spraying

    01 Julio 2015
    Other news

    A new UN study showing a steep rise in the cultivation of the leaf used to make cocaine offers fresh support to Colombia’s recent decision to end the aerial spraying of drug crops with herbicides. Justice minister, Yesid Reyes, said the report showed that the aerial aspersion strategy was ineffective. After spraying 1.5m hectares in the past 12 years, the total reduction of coca crops was just 12,000 hectares, Reyes said. Paraphrasing Albert Einstein, he added: “Insanity is to continue doing the same thing and expect different results.”

  11. Defying U.S., Colombia halts aerial spraying of crops used to make cocaine

    13 Mayo 2015
    Other news

    The government of Colombia rejected a major tool in the American-backed antidrug campaign — ordering a halt to the aerial spraying of the country’s vast illegal plantings of coca, the crop used to make cocaine, citing concerns that the spray causes cancer. The decision ends a program that has continued for more than two decades, raising questions about the viability of long-accepted strategies in the war on drugs in the region.

  12. Colombia to ban coca spraying herbicide glyphosate

    09 Mayo 2015
    Other news

    Colombia has announced it will stop using a controversial herbicide to destroy illegal plantations of coca, the raw ingredient for cocaine.

  13. Last flight looms for US-funded air war on drugs as Colombia counts health cost

    05 Mayo 2015
    Other news

    For more than two decades crop dusters have buzzed the skies of Colombia showering bright green fields of coca with chemical defoliant as part of a US-funded effort to stem the country’s production of cocaine. Farmers across the country have long complained that indiscriminate spraying also destroys legal crops, and that the chemical used – glyphosate – has caused everything from skin rashes and respiratory problems to diarrhoea and miscarriages.

  14. Report illustrates dynamics of Colombia's domestic drug trade

    25 Febrero 2015
    Other news

    A recent analysis on the relationship between local drug markets and violence and crime in Colombia illustrates the dynamics driving the domestic drug trade, and provides recommendations for comprehensive government interventions designed to result in long-lasting security improvements.

  15. Report illustrates dynamics of Colombia's domestic drug trade

    Michael Lohmuller
    25 Febrero 2015
    En los medios

    A recent analysis on the relationship between local drug markets and violence and crime in Colombia illustrates the dynamics driving the domestic drug trade, and provides recommendations for comprehensive government interventions designed to result in long-lasting security improvements.

  16. Drugs and Peace in Colombia

    01 Enero 2015
    Tema

    After more than four years of peace talks in Havana, the Colombian government and the FARC have taken important steps toward a definitive agreement to end the conflict. Addressing the issue of drugs – crops for illicit use, production, consumption and drug trafficking– is key to achieving sustainable peace in the country. Violence linked to the drugs economy and the financing of armed groups have been central to the country's conflict, while the illicit drugs market has also served as a survival economy and safety net. Rethinking the war on drugs is therefore critical to building peace throughout the rural regions of Colombia.

  17. Producers of Crops

    01 Enero 2015
    Tema

    TNI’s Drugs & Democracy programme has dedicated a large share of its attention on (national and international) drug control policies towards crop cultivation and alternative development. In doing so, the programme works closely with - representatives and/or families of - producers of cannabis, opium, and coca, whose voices are often left out from the policymaking arenas. Furthermore, the programme aims to build bridges between crop producing communities and important stakeholders such as civil society or nongovernmental organisations, community leaders, and policymakers - as an integral part of the programme’s efforts to advocate for more humane and inclusive approaches guided by the principles of human rights, development, and harm reduction.

  18. Urban drug markets and zones of impunity in Colombia

    • Isaac De León Beltrán, Juan Carlos Garzón Vergara
    09 Diciembre 2014
    Policy briefing

    The interaction of local drug markets with violence and crime is complex, and it is very difficult to separate it off from other types of criminal economies.

  19. Colombia, more than three decades of toxic sprayings. Enough!

    Amira Armenta
    26 Septiembre 2014
    Article

    It is unfortunate that 35 years after the first chemical spraying in the Sierra Nevada de Santa Marta, we are still writing about aerial sprayings in Colombia, demanding the current government to definitely defer an ecocide and incompetent policy.

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