Waging Peace: Colombia
The Carter Center and International IDEA initiated a dialogue forum between the five Andean countries (Venezuela, Colombia, Ecuador, Peru, and Bolivia) and the United States in 2010. The purpose of the Andean-U.S. Dialogue Forum, an 18-month series of dialogue sessions held in both the United States and the Andean region, was to:
The Carter Center, together with the United Nations Development Program, supported the work of a dialogue group of distinguished citizens from Colombia and Ecuador to improve relations between the two countries since September 2007.
When Colombia and Ecuador broke diplomatic relations on March 3, 2008, after a Colombian military attack on a FARC camp inside Ecuador's sovereign territory, The Carter Center began working with the two nations to facilitate communication between them and encourage the resumption of relations. On June 6, 2008, the presidents of both countries accepted a proposal from former U.S. President Jimmy Carter to renew diplomatic relations at the level of chargé d 'affaires, immediately and without preconditions. Read full text >
Although Latin America spends relatively less on defense than most other regions, expenditures on expensive weapons systems divert scarce foreign exchange from more effective investments and compel neighbors to spend more on defense and, by doing so, generate international tensions. Concerned about an arms race in Latin America, the Carter Center's Council of Presidents and Prime Ministers of the Americas urged governments in the region to pause before embarking on major arms purchases. Between April 1997 and March 1998, 28 current heads of government and 14 former heads of government signed a written pledge to accept a moratorium of two years on purchasing sophisticated weapons. Among the signatories was Colombia President Ernesto Samper Pizano.