Support for Peacebuilding in Colombia: Transitional Justice and Historical Memory

Support for Peacebuilding in Colombia: Transitional Justice and Historical Memory

Good Governance and Civil Society

Client: GIZ

Period: 08/2018 – 11/2020

Country: Colombia



The internal armed conflict, which has been going on for more than 50 years between the government, paramilitary forces and guerrilla groups, is a central obstacle to Colombia’s peaceful and inclusive development, despite the peace treaty signed between the government and the FARC at the end of 2016.


A number of laws have been passed or reformed in recent years to deal with the conflict in criminal and historical terms, as well as to compensate victims and to return land. Despite initial successes, however, implementation has fallen far short of public expectations as yet. Reasons for this include, for example, a lack of coordination, a lack of trust between the state and civil society as well as the continuing violence in the context of the armed conflict.

Project description


The objective of the program is to implement peace policies at national, regional and local level in a participatory and efficient manner. This is to be achieved with five fields of action in the three intervention regions Norte de Santander, Caquetá and Meta, in particular for the poorer population in rural regions affected by the internal conflict:

  • Regional Peacebuilding
  • Transitional Justice and Historical Memory
  • Dealing with the problem of violently disappeared persons
  • Victim compensation and land restitution
  • Consolidation of local capacities for regional planning and peace development



The consortium AMBERO-Como-Ideaborn is responsible for the implementation of the component “Transitional Justice and Historical Memory”. This field of action promotes interinstitutional cooperation between judicial bodies for more efficient decision-making and for the appropriate integration and protection of victims. Moreover, the component contributes to the historical reconstruction of the armed conflict.


The following activities are provided by our project team in Colombia:

  • Support in the development and institutionalization of a pedagogical concept to deal with the past in cooperation with the CNMH (National Center of Historical Memory), the competent national, regional and local authorities and civil society organizations;
  • Support for the development and strengthening of remembrance capacities in civil society and state organizations, particularly at local and regional level;
  • Process consulting on the cooperation and articulation of state and non-state actors in the field of memory work, especially at the regional level;
  • Methodical and technical monitoring of memory initiatives, especially in the intervention regions Norte de Santander, Meta and Caquetá;
  • Expert and procedural advice to the Attorney General’s Office, the judiciary and other relevant state and civil society actors in the termination of legal proceedings under the Law for Justice and Peace (Law 975/2005);  
  • Process consulting and methodological-professional support of the processes against the paramilitary blocks Catatumbo and Centaurus with influence in Norte de Santander and Meta;  
  • Advice to the Special Jurisdiction for Peace (JEP), in particular on the appropriate participation of victim groups and civil society organizations in JEP processes;
  • Support and process consulting for the cooperation of the JEP with other state organizations, in particular the General Prosecutor’s Office and the new institutions of transitional justice in Colombia;
  • Strengthening the capacity of civil society organizations at national, local and regional levels to contribute to the criminal reconditioning of the conflict.