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2013-07-15

AMERICA/COLOMBIA - A Bishop and a deputy minister mediators in the dispute between the government and farmers

Tibú (Agenzia Fides) – Mgr. Omar Alberto Sanchez, Bishop of Tibú in Norte de Santander, which borders Venezuela, and the deputy minister of labor, Jose Noe Rios, were charged with preparing an act of agreement in the dispute between the government and farmers in the region of Catatumbo. As reported to Fides by the Vice President of Colombia, Angelino Garzón, these are his words: "There have been very clear positions on behalf of the farmers, and there were also views expressed by the national government. So we agreed that Mgr. Omar Alberto Sanchez and Jose Noe Rios (Deputy Minister of Labour), are assigned to work on what could be a suitable agreement that satisfies both parties".
Farmers call for the creation of a rural reserve and to stop large mining and agribusiness projects (announced by the government), which, in their opinion, would damage the environment and the local production. Since the beginning, the Bishop of Tibú, Mgr. Omar Alberto Sánchez has called for dialogue in order to find a solution to the difficult situation suffered in the area, and farmers have relied on him because he knows their hopes and frustrations. (CE) (Agenzia Fides 15/07/2013)

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