VELA in the Media

VELA Colectivo's photographic and written work — and that of its individual members — has been featured in numerous Colombian and international publications.



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Colombia Hidroituango dam: 'The river took my house'.
The BBC.

Puerto Valdivia is just one of the communities affected by a series of emergencies which have hit Colombia's largest hydroelectric dam project, Hidroituango. Tens of thousands of people living downstream from the dam have been evacuated and the emergencies just keep coming. 

See full story here.


Colombian cocaine depletion.

A three year old girl was recently killed in Ituango, Colombia, when a grenade exploded at her home. The target of the attack was the man in the neighboring house, alias "Shakiro", a local member of the Clan del Golfo cartel.

See full story here (In Norwegian).


Between the Army and the armed groups: the crossroads of the coca growers in Ituango.
Semana Rural

The campesinos who survive from farming illicit crops in this municipality protested the delays in the substitution process. How do you fight coca without risking your life?

See full story here (in Spanish).



Elections, a First for the FARC, Will Test Colombia’s Democracy and Its Peace Deal.
World Politics Review

On March 11, Colombians vote in what could be the biggest test of the country’s democracy in decades. For the first time, the now-demobilized Revolutionary Armed Forces of Colombia, or FARC, will compete at the polls as a newly formed political party.

See full story here.




Ditching coca for other crops, Colombia's farmers ask: Where do we sell?
Christian Science Monitor

Crop substitution aims to swap out the crop that funded rebels' decades-long fight with the government. But farmers say lasting success will take more than new seeds: new infrastructure, better public services, and tackling the root causes of the conflict.

See full story here.



Colombia: Searching for an alternative to coca.

In the remote region of Putumayo in southern Colombia, the economy depends almost entirely on one thing: coca, the raw ingredient for cocaine.

See full story here.



Peace is already threatened.

As the guerrilla group, the Farc, gives up coca, weapons and land in Colombia, criminals move in.

See full story here (in Norwegian).



Can Colombia and the FARC Stumble Their Way to Lasting Peace?
via World Politics Review

Perched on a hill above the tiny village of Carrizal in northern Colombia, the camp that was supposed to be housing 300 guerrilla fighters is nothing more than a wooden shack surrounded by a muddy field. 

See full story here.



Colombia peace deal: Left in limbo as Farc rebels fail to show.

Hector Moreno and Eumenia Acosta's farm should have been filling up with rebels on 6 October.

See full story here.



Santa Lucia FARC "Transition Zones".

Tucked deep into the Andes, the village of Santa Lucia in the municipality of Ituango has been chosen as one of the 20 "transition zones" where rebels from the left-wing Revolutionary Armed Forces of Colombia (Farc) will disarm after more than 50 years of conflict.

See full story here.

A Colombian Recipe for Peace and Reconciliation.
Americas Quarterly

Elcielo, in Medellín, stands out for more than the quality of its food. One of Latin America’s top 50 restaurants, it has also become a symbol of Colombia’s efforts to return to normalcy after more than five decades of conflict. For the past seven years, elcielo for Everyone, the foundation established by restaurant owner Juan Manuel Barrientes, has been offering cooking courses and employment opportunities to wounded army veterans.

See full story here.

The continued destruction of Colombia’s largest wetland.
Colombia Reports

Designated a UNESCO Biosphere reserve and a RAMSAR Protected Wetland, the "Cienaga Grande of Santa Marta" in the coastal state of Magdalena has been both a battlefield of Colombia’s decades-long civil war and for environmental issues that continue to affect a regional population who depend on it for their livelihoods.

See full story here.