From Principles to Practice: Challenges of Implementing Reparations for Massive Violations in Colombia


Cristián Correa

This report examines Colombia’s Victims and Land Restitution Law (2011), which provides comprehensive reparations to conflict victims and restitution to victims of forced displacement who rely on land for their livelihoods – and assesses the challenges of implementing the law under current conditions, which include widespread poverty and ongoing violence. The government has allocated an estimated USD $29 billion to pay for the program, but some question whether it is enough. Complexities in the law also make it difficult to translate principles into action. The report suggests that a more modest approach to providing reparations on a massive scale may be preferable to overselling an effort that continues to leave many victims waiting.

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