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Colombia - Political Flags - Overview and Index

Last modified: 2008-07-19 by dov gutterman
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Historical Background

In the 1960's communist revolutionaries in Columbia (FARC) proclaimed the Republics of Marquetalia and Riochiquitos, that is an experiment of comunist-countryman administration in Latin America.
The flag used was probably the FARC flag (red with the name?). But I found now the local flag of Marquetalia:
This is green borderes white. In the centre is a torch white and golden, with flamme yellow and red.
Another city of the territory is named Marulanda, and this is the name of the FARC head, Manuel Marulanda named too "Tiro Fijo" (Fix Shooting). The flag of the city is black, white and green horizontal.
More information?
Jaume Olle , 24 November 1996

About the Communist Revolution and its flag, I'm not aware that they had a flag, but the actual Independent Republics were seven: Marquetalia (in the border between the Departments of Tolima and Huila), Río Chiquito (in the border between the Departments of Cauca and Huila), El Pato (in the Department of Caquetá), Guayabero, El Duda, Alto Ariari (all three of them in the Department of Meta) and Alto Sumapaz (in the border between the Departments of Meta, Cundinamarca and Tolima) Marquetalia being the most important. These existed from 1955 through 1965 but they became known in a Congress debate in 1964, and short afterwards there was a military operation against them. These 7 "Republics" were in an area plenty of mountains and forrest, along with tall hills and stuff, and they were pretty much together (if you have a Colombian map you can see that they are close to each other).
E.R., 19 January 1999

In Colombia there was a split in the Colombian Liberal Party when several members of this party, after the fall of the Dictatorship of Lt. General Gustavo Rojas Pinilla in 1957, returned to the country from exile in 1959. After the fall of the Dictatorship an agreement was reached by the two political dominant forces, the Conservative Party and the Liberal Party to switch Presidential terms (and all other major branches of power, but especially the Executive one, at all levels, that is National, State and Local levels included in this agreement).
First, the Benidorm Agreement (signed on July 24, 1956) between the leaders of these two political parties, and then the Declaration of Sitges (July 20, 1957) gave birth to what is known as the Frente Nacional (National Front) a bipartisan rule of the country that was supposed to last 16 years (four consecutive Presidential terms), starting from 1958 and lasting until 1974, where multipartisan elections where supposed to be held. This power sharing agreement ended a time of radical violence amid these two parties (that even went to Civil War many times during the XIXth Century) and also followed a time of relative peace after an amnesty granted by Lt. General Gustavo Rojas Pinilla duirng his tenure, offered to Liberal and Communist armed illegal forces set up in the country in the 1940's and 1950's, a time known as "La Violencia" (The Violence).
However this agreement discarded many political views and left no freedom of determining any other political option, except these two: thus, several political and guerrilla groups emerged as a way of showing discontent at this situation. Political parties such as the MRL (Movimiento Revolucionario Liberal, founded by Alfonso López Michelsen in 1959) and the ANAPO (Alianza Nacional Popular, People's National Alliance, founded by Lt. General Gustavo Rojas Pinilla in 1961) appear. Also guerrilla groups such as the FARC (founded in 1964), the ELN (founded in 1965), and the EPL (founded in 1967) emerged as a result of this. At first the MRL was supported by the Colombian Communist Party but later on it became less radical.
Then in 1974, where multiparty elections where supposed to be held, an alleged fraud took place "granting" the Conservative Party its last Presidential term ending the Frente Nacional at the end of this Presidential term (1978). As a result of this elections, a radical group within the ANAPO (who was the party that "felt" it lost the Presidency to this fraud) formed the M-19 , so that is why this group based its flag on that of the ANAPO. The MRL lasted from 1959 until 1966, achieving several seats in Congress and also some victories on the State and Local level, when it returned to the Colombian Liberal Party mainstream in an agreement to accept several changes propoesd by the MRL dissident leader. The ANAPO lasted more than three decades, gaining importance on the State and Local level as well, but it ceased to exist in 1998. Many of its members are now part of the PDI (Polo Democrático Independiente), which at the same time fused itself with the political movement AD (Alternativa Democrática, Democratic Alternative), to comply with the rules of the 2006 elections in order to obtain the minimum number of votes to be recognized as a party by Colombia's Electoral ruling body, the Registraduría Nacional del Estado Civil.
E.R., 16 July 2007


Next Sunday, March 12, 2006, there will be general elections for Congress. There is a website by the country's electoral authority where they show an example of a voting sheet at <>. This image includes all current political parties that have candidates for Congress (both Senat and House of Representatives). There you will find logos of each political party/movement.
E.R., 9 March 2006

The following list of Political Parties is based on the last elections results of 2006 and thus states the official list of legal political parties in Colombia (based on the Registraduría Nacional del Estado Civil and the Consejo nacional Electoral, through Resolution No. 1057 of July 13, 2006). It is also worth mentioning that all other movements that call themselves parties are not since they did not achieve the minimun number of votes to either have a candidate take office on any given government post or the minimum number of votes to be recognized as a party by the new Colombian law.
The list (in no particular order of importance or foundation date) with official websites (when available):  
- Movimiento MIRA (Movimiento Independiente de Renovación Absoluta)  <>.
- Movimiento ALAS-Equipo Colombia <>.
- Movimiento Alianza Social Indígena (Indigenous Social Alliance Movement)
- Movimiento Apertura Liberal <>.
- Movimiento AICO (Autoridades Indígenas de Colombia).
- Movimiento Colombia Viva <>.
- Movimiento Político Afrounincca.
- Partido Cambio Radical Colombiano <>.
- Partido Colombia Democrática <>.
- Partido Conservador Colombiano.
- Partido Convergencia Ciudadana <>.
- Partido Liberal Colombiano.
- Partido Opción Centro.
- Partido Social de Unidad Nacional <>.
- Polo Democrático Independiente.
E.R., 16 October 2006

The Law which regulates the actions of Political Parties is called Ley 974 of July 22, 2005, known as Ley de Bancadas (Bench Law, referring to the seat or bench each party occupy in Congress).
Some of the most important rulings are:
- Seats in Congress belong to Parties, not Individuals (thus if a Congressman retires from his party, he cannot affiliate his candidacy/term with another party)
- A Congressman cannot vote against the majority of the Party's decision (unless citing special motives, such as conscious objection, religious, moral or welfare issues.
- Members from a political movement that lost its legal representation for not having enough votes, cannot subscribe their names in a legal represented party that obtained the valid number of votes to be recognized as a party.
- Parties and movements that lost its legal representation due to low number of votes can merge with other parties and abide by the current law.
E.R., 25 December 2006

Registraduría Nacional del Estado Civil and the Consejo nacional Electoral, through Resolution No. 1050 of July 10, 2006, determines the proceedings to terminate all other political movements and parties that did not achieve the minimun number of votes.
E.R., 15 July 2007

For a political party to be established in Colombia, among other requirements, there needs to be a minimum of 100,000 signatures to establish the party, and obtain at least one seat in any of the elections it participates.
E.R., 4 November 2007

The Colombian government issued Decree No. 53, of January 15, 2008, estabilshing the rules for new political parties. It raises the top from 2% to 5% of the electoral votes casted for any political party to gain political and legal status. It also sanctions political organizations that endorse and/or support illegal armed groups and allows political candidates in collegiate bodies to switn only once from the party they got elected from to another party.
E.R., 23 January 2008

List of Political Parties, Movements and Organizations