8 March message from FARC women

At a time very difficult time for the Colombia peace process, women of the FARC party call on unity.

The women of the FARC party in Colombia has issued a written statement to call on everyone to get united in these difficult times for the Peace Agreement.

The statement reads: “The Peace Agreement between the Colombian State and the FARC-EP (now People’s Alternative and Revolutionary Force), a conquest for the whole society that suffered during the war, recognizes that women play an essential role in the prevention and overcoming the causes of social, political and economic conflicts, and in the consolidation of a stable and lasting Peace.

Thus our protagonism, leadership and equal participation must be guaranteed so that all the agreed objectives are achieved.

It also recognizes and acknowledge that war strikes women in different ways, which implies the need for measures that meet our needs and that have been established within the framework of the Final Agreement. However, the government of Iván Duque violates the Agreement and does not guarantee the necessary reforms that will allow to start the construction of peace with social justice.”

The women of the FARC urged that the Final Peace Agreement be fully complied with, especially with respect to the following points:

“1. Access and formalization of rural property under equal conditions.

2. Guarantee of the economic, social and cultural rights of women and people with diverse sexual identity, of the rural sector.

3. Promotion of women's political, social and community participation in spaces of representation, decision-making and conflict resolution.

4. Recognition of differential effects on women victims and establishment of prevention and protection measures that address their specific risks.

5. Access to Truth, Justice and Guarantees of No Repetition.

6. Public recognition, non stigmatization and dissemination of the work done by women as political subjects and human rights defenders.

7. Inter-institutional management for the strengthening of national and territorial women's organizations and LGBTI movements to ensure their political and social participation.

8. Disaggregated information systems.

9. International accompaniment to the Implementation.”

Drawing attention on the situation of women in Colombia the FARC statement said :It is not new that women are in a situation of profound structural inequality in relation to men.

To mention but a few: "The unemployment rate for January was 12.8%, (increase of one percentage point respect to the same period of the previous year).

The gender gap also increased to 7.1 percentage points, that is, while unemployed men are 9.8%, women are 16.9%, a worrisome figure, if we take into account that the female population in Colombia represents the majority" (DANE 2108)

Women who can and are working in the formal and/or informal market, end up doing double or triple work, since our responsibilities also include domestic work and the care of children, older adults, people with disabilities, and people with illnesses.”

In Cali, according to figures from the Security Observatory, last year, there were 22 cases of feminicide and in the course of this year there were 2, as well as 15 cases of violent murders of transgender women in Valle del Cauca in 2018 and the first 3 months of this year.

The statement ends with the following call “On this 8 March, historic date of struggle and unity of the women's movement for their rights, the Farian Women, the fighters for Peace, are on the streets of Colombia calling on the whole society to continue working for peace with social justice, for the end of all the violence and oppression that women live in the capitalist - imperialist - patriarchal - racist society and for the campaign against the imperialist war and the imminent threat of aggression against the sister nation of Venezuela.”