Colombia is expanding its land restitution programme into former no-go areas in the country’s war-torn south aiming to return land stolen from farmers by illegal armed groups, the government has said as peace talks advance.
Land distribution being central to the Colombian conflict, the restitution of abandoned or extorted land presents a challenge for the peace process. Land restitution is necessary to help displaced people resettle and to bring justice to Colombians. However, some cases are particularly complex, and some demands will likely remain unfulfilled.
Of the some 80,000 land claims lodged to date with the authorities less than half are being processed, hampered by red tape and difficulties in sorting out who has legal title.