Rebel ‘baby boom’ was a sign of hope. Now, it represents uncertainty. (National Geographic & The Pulitzer Center)

After Revolutionary Armed Forces of Colombia (FARC) guerrillas signed a peace pact with the Colombian government, there was a baby boom among former rebel fighters who saw their kids – "niños de la paz," or "children of peace" – as a step into a future without war. But 5 years later, that peace process is crumbling and their children have grown to represent a deepening uncertainty. 

Colombian guerrillas are using coronavirus curfews to expand their control. Violators have been killed. (The Washington Post)

Guerrillas, paramilitaries and armed groups across Colombia have imposed strict coronavirus quarantines to consolidate power, sewing fear in populations who have already lived through decades of conflict. The consequences for violating these controls is death. (Photo: Oscar Coral)

Doctor, Refugee. Violinist, Refugee. Model, Refugee. (The New York Times)

They felt on top of the world. Then the world turned upside down. When earthquake, war or social upheaval drives you across a border and into the unknown, you learn the hard lesson of the refugee: You didn’t just lose a home, a job, a country. You may also have lost your identity. Five Venezuelans tell their stories of life before and after crisis in their country changed everything.

Lima’s ‘Wall of Shame’ and the Art of Building Barriers (The Atlantic)

Lima, Peru’s “Wall of Shame” was constructed by the city’s hyper-rich in the 1980s to keep out poor migrants displaced by bloodshed in Peru’s countryside. Like many world walls – whether it be the U.S.-Mexico border’s to Israel-Palestine’s – the 6-mile-long barrier stands as a testament to the culture’s deeper societal divisions.

Migrants Take Out Huge Loans to Pay Coyotes. Coronavirus Could Cause Them to Default. (VICE News)

More and more Guatemalans take out loans up to $16,000 to be smuggled to the U.S., putting their homes on collateral. If they succeed in their migration, they could change their families' lives for generations. If they fail, they risk losing everything. As novel coronavirus ravages the U.S. economy, it threatens to tip them toward disaster.

Colombia's real estate agency selling homes with a bloody past (BBC News)

The Colombian government created a real estate agency in an attempt to sell over 1,600 homes, apartments, farms and lots of land which have either been seized by the government or handed over by armed groups that have demobilized over the past years. As peace in Colombia falls apart, many properties have become "impossible" to sell.

Trump’s rush to build US border wall fuels fear of lasting harms (Al Jazeera)

As former U.S. President Donald Trump neared his final days in office, the administration rapidly built border wall in some of the most remote, biologically diverse stretches of the U.S.-Mexico border. While the ex-president hailed the barrier a success, scientists and activists fear that the construction could leave lasting environmental damage.

‘Patria y Vida’ — Homeland and Life — Watchwords in Cuba’s Protests (The New York Times)

The chant "patria y vida" echoed through the streets in Cuba during the country's mass protests in July 2021. The chant comes from a revolutionary rap movement, and is a twist on the phrase "patria o muerte," or "homeland or death," sported by the the Cuban community party during the Fidel Castro era.  (Photo: Joe Raedle/Getty Images)

He tried to save a rare parrot. It cost him his life. (The Washington Post)

Despite being one of the most biodiverse countries in the world, Colombia is also the most dangerous to be an environmental protector. With an uptick in rural violence and extractive interests pushing into previously untouched nature, the job has only grown more deadly. Gonzalo Cardona Molina, an environmentalist that brought a parrot species back from the brink of extinction, was the first defender killed in 2021.

The Walkers: Venezuelans travel hundreds of kilometres by foot (Photo Story; Al Jazeera)

'The Walkers:' I followed the winding, mountainous road running from the Colombia-Venezuela border that a growing number of Venezuelans are taking as they flee crisis on foot.
Migrants – families, the elderly, the sick – trek hundreds of miles in extreme conditions, often not knowing what lies ahead. Some have their sights set on Colombian cities, others are beginning journeys across the continent.

An Elegy for Colombia’s Tropical Glaciers (Atlas Obscura)

Tropical glaciers – ice formations resting on near the equator – seem to exist by a fluke of nature. The glaciers rest high in mountains like where heavy precipitation from the jungles lying below feed them and high altitude temperatures keeps them frozen. But experts also warn they're "on the front line of climate change." In Colombia, only seven remain and in 30 years, they'll have disappeared completely.

As pandemic drags on, Latin American women lose even more ground (Al Jazeera)

Authorities warn stretching pandemic could push Latin America into a “lost decade." Women, already facing more precarious labour conditions, are disproportionately affected. Experts worry that the pandemic is not only deepening endemic gaps, but also setting women back in years of progress in a region that already lags behind on gender equality.

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