How do long conflicts finally come to an end?

It looks like Colombia’s 52 year conflict will finally come to a peaceful end. It’s rarely made big headlines in the UK but is interesting for students of RE and PSHCE because the end of the conflict sees lots of things happening which we would expect to find at the end of a bloody conflict.


First up there’s been a peace deal between the insurgents (rebels) and the government. This is going to be voted on by the people of Colombia in a referendum. The Farc rebels have also said they will pay reparations to the victims of this last Cold War conflict. There are thought to have been 260,000 people who died and up to six million people internally displaced by the conflict. With the end of the conflict the Farc rebels are also expected to stop their heavy involvement in Colombia’s drug trade too.

peace deal – an agreement between two or more hostile parties, usually countries or governments, which formally ends a state of war between the parties.

referendum -a general vote by the electorate on a single political question which has been referred to them for a direct decision. Britain had a referendum on leaving or staying in the EU in 2016.

reparations -the compensation for war damage paid by a defeated state/ group. At the Treaty of Versailles Germany was made to pay reparations for the damage caused in WWI. It was one of the reasons the Nazi Party was able to rise to power because the payment of the reparations crippled the Germane economy and people were annoyed at having to pay back so much.

internally displaced -a person who is forced to flee his or her home but who remains within his or her country’s borders. They aren’t allowed to be called refugees as the legal definition of a refugee has to see the person fleeing over the border to another country.

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