Commission Chair András Osskó attends the International Seminar on Victims of Dispossession Initiatives to Settle the Debt

Bogotá, Colombia, 24-26 November, 2010

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Podium discussion at the Seminar.

July 2010, the displaced population in Colombia was approximately 4.2 million people with a high percentage of homes lead by women. Land abandoned or forced dispossession is about 6.6 million hectares. The Parliament passed a Bill to grant victims the restitution of their land. The Colombian Government has also made a decision to study some agricultural reforms and implement the constitutional action for termination of ownership rights. Due to the importance of these decisions for the agricultural and social problems in the country, the Colombian Government with the support of the embassies from the Federal Republic of Germany, The Netherlands and the German Technical Agency for Cooperation (GTZ) jointly organized the International Seminar which was held at the Tequendama Hotel in Bogotá.

The seminar was focused on analyzing the governmental challenge of land restitution to victims of abandonment and dispossession under circumstances that will guarantee that they will be granted their rights to justice and truth and they can enrol in the economic life of the country under conditions of dignity and security.

More than 200 participants attended the Seminar, top government, court officials representatives of many civil associations including Indian and Afro Colombian ethnic groups. The Vice President of the country also gave a presentation.

András Osskó, Chair of Commission 7 was invited by GTZ and gave a presentation on the Restitution and Privatization Procedures in Hungary and Central Eastern Europe as a good practice. In his presentation he pointed out the importance of the development of operational land administration institutional framework especially cadastre and land registry, where institutions play a very important role in any country to implement restitution or other land privatization processes successfully.

Colombia is really in a post conflict situation and FIG, particularly Commission 7, can contribute to the success of implementation of the land reform not only in Colombia but also in the region.

András Osskó
Chair, FIG Commission 7

16 December 2010