Some residents of the Colombian city of Cartagena were not too pleased with the inconveniences caused by security measures and traffic restrictions during the weekend’s Summit of the Americas. But for approximately 1000 Afro-Colombian families the conference served as the ideal backdrop for them to receive the deeds to thousands of acres of ancestral lands.
As you can see in the below video via the Colombia government, President Juan Manuel Santos and his U.S. counterpart, Barack Obama, presided the hand over ceremony in the neighborhood of San Basilio de Palenque:
The restitution of land “to you and other Afro-Colombian communities is another step towards the end of the long conflict in this country and will help you become participants in the new Colombia,” said Obama during the ceremony on Sunday evening.
Both Obama and Santos reached several bilateral agreements over the weekend such as declaring May 15th as the official start of the free trade pact between both countries.
Furthermore, Obama announced that the U.S. would support Colombia’s bid to join the Organization for Economic Co-operation and Development, and the U.S. will extend the validity of visas for Colombian visitors on temporary basis from five years to ten years.
Video Source – YouTube via Noticias Uno Colombia, SIGCOLOMBIA
Online Sources – Bernama, Straits Times, El Espectador