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Colombia - Political Flags - Part IV

Last modified: 2017-08-25 by zoltán horváth
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Editorial Remark: It must be noted that all the opinions are of the authors and not of FOTW. Our site is non-political and concentrates only on vexillological issues.


See also:


National Guerrilla Coordinating Board/Simon Bolivar Coordinating Board


image by Jaume Ollé


image by Jaume Ollé

This is the review on the (CNG - CGSB) taken from <www.tkb.org>:
"Mothertongue Name: Coordinadora Guerrillera Simón Bolívar (CGSB). Base of Operation: Colombia.
Founding Philosophy: In the 1980s, several leftist terrorist organizations in Colombia created an umbrella organization, from which to coordinate negotiations with the Colombian government and to coordinate certain terrorist activities. The National Guerrilla Coordinating Board (CNG), formed in 1985, was the forerunner to a broader coordinating board. In 1987, CNG was reconstituted as the Simon Bolivar Coordinating Board (CGSB). CGSB was created as a unified front for the terrorist-organization members. While CGSB engaged the government in negotiations, the terrorist members simultaneously held onto their rebel-controlled areas and remained willing, at varying levels, to commit terrorist attacks. The Simon Bolivar Coordinating Board was comprised of Revolutionary Armed Forces of Colombia (FARC), April 19 Movement (M-19), National Liberation Army (ELN), Popular Liberation Army (EPL), Workers' Revolutionary Party (PRT) and the Quintin Lame Command.
CGSB participated in a series of government talks in the early 1990s. The talks were jeopardized several times by terrorist attacks of the FARC and ELN. Despite the continuing aggression of the two largest terrorist groups, CGSB did achieve limited success. Resulting from government negotiations, M-19 put down its arms in 1990. EPL's main body followed step, ceasing its operations in 1991. However, Colombia's largest leftist terrorist organizations, FARC and ELN, did not reach a settlement with the government and continue terrorist operations to this day. In fact, while some groups seriously negotiated for an end to hostilities, other elements of the CGSB continued to perpetrate terrorist attacks, claiming attacks both under the umbrella of CGSB and as individual terrorist groups.
Current Goals: The Simon Bolivar Coordinating Board (CGSB) disbanded in the early 1990s. While certain CGSB factions ceased terrorist operations in the early 1990s, the FARC and ELN remain significant terrorist organizations".
E.R., 23 March 2005


National Liberation Army (ELN - Ejercito de Liberacion Nacional)


image by Ivan Sache, 23 Febuary 2002

The flag of Ejercito de Liberacion Nacional is at <www.eln-voces.com>. The flag and emblem of ELN is explained by the organization in this site.
Dov Gutterman, 8 March 1999 and Jaume Ollé, 19 April 2001

From <www.tkb.org>:
Mothertongue Name: Ejercito de Liberacion Nacional (ELN). Base of Operation: Colombia.
Founding Philosophy: The ELN is a Cuban Revolution-inspired group, heavily influenced by the early actions and theories of Fidel Castro and Che Guevara. The ELN emerged following the overthrow of the Cuban government by Guevara and Castro in 1959. The National Liberation Army was founded by two distinct groups. The first group comprised of urban, left-wing intellectuals with strong ties to rural farmers. They co-founded the group with a radicalized group of oil sector unionists from Barrancabermeja's oil industry. Radical members of the Catholic clergy joined the group in late 1965. This was the first time that Christians and Marxists had joined together in a Colombian revolutionary movement.   The ELN's unique founding philosophy strongly emphasized socialism, mixing Castro-ism with the liberation theology of the Catholic Church. More concretely, the ELN's self-appointed role was to represent the rural poor and decrease the foreign presence in Colombia. The ELN's goal was to take power from the Colombian government and replace it with a more egalitarian "popular democracy" that would represent all Colombians equally under the law. The ELN strongly opposed foreign investment, in part due to its location in an oil-rich area and its connections to trade unionists in the energy sector.  
The Colombian Department of Administrative Security estimates that in 1998 alone, the ELN obtained U.S. $84 million from ransoms and U.S.$255 million from extortion. Employees of oil companies constitute a large percentage of the ELN's targets. The kidnapping and extortion of oil company employees is ELN's primary source of income. This is a natural legacy of ELN's formation in an area rich with oil wells and oil companies. A third, more recent source of income is the collection of a "property" tax from coca and poppy cultivators. It is not known whether the collection of property taxes is a centralized or decentralized activity.  
Current Goals: Throughout its history, the National Liberation Army steadily gravitated towards violence and armed struggle as a means to attain a socialist Colombia. At the ELN's 1996 national conference, the group decided to decrease emphasis on creating a purely socialist Colombia. Instead, the ELN has returned to its founding objective: popular democracy for all Colombians, propagated at the local level. The ELN has not given up the use of violence in its efforts.
E.R., 23 March 2005

I found another version of the ELN's flag at <www.ejercito.mil.co>. The ELN uses sometimes their Coat of Arms on their red/black flag,
E.R., 8 and 16 June 2005


Variants

[M19 Guerilla Movement (Colombia)]
image by Eugene Ipavec, 17 August 2008

There is another version of the armed group called ELN at Army's official website at news article dated June 2005. Motto in white ring is "NI UN PASO ATRAS - LIBERACION O MUERTE" (Not one step back - Liberation or death). There is another curved inscription above the ring that is unreadable.
E.R. and Eugene Ipavec, 31 August 2006

[M19 Guerilla Movement (Colombia)]
image by Zoltan Horvath, 18 May 2014

During a recent video one can see a white flag with the logo (on the left) of the ELN. This is a variant of the already reported flag.
Esteban Rivera, 18 May 2014


National Liberation Army- Camilista Union


image by Jaume Ollé

The National Liberation Army- Camilista Union, (ELN-UC), insurgent group in Colombia, uses also Black & Red flag and generally, with the abbreviations of the group on the division of the stripes in yellow letters. Given the bonds of ELN with Cuba, it's possible that the ELN's flag is based fundamentally on the one of "July 26' Movement".
Carlos Thompson, 30 September 2004


image by Jaume Ollé Casals posted in I Love Flags, 29 December  2012

The called "Pérez the Priest", famous Catholic father and leader of the Ejército Nacional de Colombia, born in Aragon, deceased in March 1998. In an archival image we can see the Curate Perez with a flag that seems to be from a mass organization supported by the guerrillas: The Unión Camilista. Probably the name is derived from the first leader of the guerrilla, another catholic father, Camilo Torres.
Jaume Ollé Casals, 29 December  2012


Socialist Renovation Movement (CRS - Corriente de Renovación Socialista)


image from <www.cedema.org>

The ELN has had over the past years several breakaway factions. One of the most important ones was the Corriente de Renovación Socialista (CRS, Socialist Renovation Movement). It emerged during the peace talks between the leftist guerrillas and the Colombian government in the early 1990's. It appeared officially in 1991, and it acted mainly in the Departments of Sucre, Córdoba and Bolívar. It also signed a peace agreement on April 9, 1994.
Source: <www.mediosparalapaz.org>.
E.R., 19 February 2007


image by Eugene Ipavec,

I found a PDF document with important information on the CRS. In it you can see pictures of armed fighters wearing the new version of the demobilized CRS flag and logo (on pages 129, 133 and 134 of the document). It has three white letters CRS, on the tricolour flag resembling the Colombian flag.
E.R., 14 September 2007


"Ola de la victoria" campaign flag


image located by Esteban Rivera, 16 October 2015

Clara López, currently running for Mayor of the city of Bogotá in the upcoming October 25 local elections by the Polo party, portrays a campaign flag featuring the logo with an inscription that cites "Ola de la Victoria" (Victory wave) and the name of the Localidad (Locality, an administrative subdivision of the city). In this case for example, the flag is seen portraying the name of Localidad de Ciudad Bolívar (official website ), during a political rally in the San Francisco neighborhood of this Localidad.
For the different logos with the different Localidades' names on the logo, please refer to: http://www.claralopezalcaldesa.com/la-ola-de-la-victoria.html
Image cropped from news report by CM& TV news yesterday. The complete image is seen here.
Source: http://www.cmi.com.co/concejal-antonio-sanguino-respalda-candidatura-de-clara-lopez ).
Esteban Rivera, 16 October 2015


Social Party of National Unity / Party of the U (Partido Social de Unidad Nacional / Partido de U)


image by Eugene Ipavec, 30 January 2012


image by Eugene Ipavec, 30 January 2012

Social Party of National Unity (Spanish: Partido Social de Unidad Nacional), or Party of the U (Spanish: Partido de U) is a liberal conservative political party (center-right) established in 2005. On June 20, 2010, Colombia elected for the first time in their history a member of the Party of the U to the Presidency of Colombia, that being Juan Manuel Santos (current President).
Source: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Social_Party_of_National_Unity
The Party's flag is a red (top), yellow (middle), green (bottom) horizontal flag with the logo in the middle.
Screenshot taken on January 27, 2012 of tv slot granted to all political parties before the 7 p.m. news on public television boradcast) This flag can also be found here
Source: http://www.elliberal.com.co/liberal/politica/105136-partido-de-la-u-pide-al-gobierno-que-retire-reforma-a-la-educacion
A variant can also be seen here.  (Source: http://www.eltiempo.com/noticias/partido-de-la-u )
For additional information go to: Partido de la U (official website)
Esteban Rivera, 28 January 2012


Popular Liberation Army (EPL - Ejército Popular de Liberación)


Original EPL Flag
image by Jaume Ollé


New EPL Flag
image by Eugene Ipavec, 29 July 2007


Esperanza, Paz y Libertad (Old Flag)
image by Jaume Ollé


Esperanza, Paz y Libertad (New Logo)
image by E.R., 23 March 2005

From <www.tkb.org>:
Mothertongue Name: Ejército Popular de Liberación (EPL). Base of Operation: Colombia.  
Founding Philosophy: The Popular Liberation Army grew out of the Colombian Communist movement of the 1960s. In 1967, the Marxist-Leninist Communist Party (ML-CP) broke off from the larger communist political party, the Colombian Communist Party. Dissatisfied with the political chaos of 1960's Colombia, the ML-CP augmented its political organization with an armed wing in 1967. The new group soon embarked on terrorist activities under the name People's Liberation Army. Both the ML-CP and EPL advocated the Maoist ideology of sparking a national socialist revolution by beginning in the countryside. Efforts to indoctrinate the peasantry largely failed and the EPL never reached the size of larger Colombian terrorist insurgencies such as the FARC and ELN. In an effort to expand their support base, the EPL abandoned strict Maoism in 1980. The group continued, however, to work toward the goal of overthrowing the democratically elected Colombian government and replacing it with a communist state. Furthermore, the EPL continued to pursue these insurrectionist goals through terrorist activities.  
Current Goals: The EPL was one of the principal groups that pushed for a peace accord with the Colombian government in the early 1980s. With the signing of the peace accord in 1984, the EPL attempted to join mainstream Colombian politics. Their efforts were blocked, however, by the newly formed right-wing paramilitary groups, such as the ACCU. In an effort to derail the efforts to grant the politicization of the EPL, the right-wing paramilitary groups attacked political representatives of the EPL. The peace accord soon unraveled as other leftist groups, the paramilitaries, and the Colombian Army continued their attacks on one another.  
Following the failure of the peace accord, the EPL attempted to rejoin the violent fray involving the guerillas and Colombian security forces, but this attempt proved futile. The EPL essentially disbanded in 1991, when it signed a truce with the Colombian government, although a breakaway faction operating under the same name refused to accept the truce. This breakaway faction continues to operate today, despite the arrest of its co-founder and principal leader, Francisco Caraballo, in 1994.
I reccomend you read the article on wikipedia to understand the flags.
E.R., 23 March 2005

EPL had lost political protagonism over the years and it is basically only active in the North Eastern region of the Department of Antioquia known as Urabá.
More information on Hope, Peace, and Liberty (Esperanza Paz y Libertad) at wikipedia.
E.R., 12 August and 3 September 2007



image located by Esteban Rivera, 21 October 2015

On October 2, 2015 a variant of the group Epl was shown on local tv news network Caracol.
Image cropped image from tv news.
Esteban Rivera, 21 October 2015


Popular National Alliance (ANAPO - Alianza Nacional Popular)


image by Eugene Ipavec, 17 July 2007

Horizontal blue-white-red. Similar colors to M19 Guerilla Movement flag. Source is Smith (1975) [smi75a], pp. 340-341 ("Symbols in politics"). Smith says that these are real flags and not only party emblems, which may differ in colours when used as emblem or in a flag.
Ivan Sache, 6 August 1999

ANAPO (Alianza Nacional Popular, People's National Alliance) was founded by Lt. General Gustavo Rojas Pinilla in 1961). 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).
Flag appears at Registraduría's official website.
E.R., 17 July 2007


Quintin Lame Armed Movement (Movimiento Armado Quintín Lame)


image by Jaume Ollé


image by Jaume Ollé

In 1984 a new guerrilla group emerged in Colombia: the Movimiento Armado Quintín Lame (Quintin Lame Armed Movement), named after a NASA tribe leader (Manuel Quintín Lame Chantre), it was a guerrilla group, thus an illegal armed organization. It entered peace talks with Colombia's government and laid down its weapons in May 1991.
E.R., 23 March 2005


Revolutionary People's Army (ERP-Ejército Revolucionario del Pueblo)


image by Eugene Ipavec, 25 October 2005

The flag of the ERP (Ejército Revolucionario del Pueblo, or Revolutionary People's Army), a breakaway faction of the ELN. The ERP was formed in 1996. The lettering style is the same as the ELN, only the color scheme is different.
Source: <www.geocities.com/ta-erpkomm.html>.
E.R., 25 October 2005

In recent news, the ERP has fully demobilized on April 30, 2007 as stated by the Minister of Defense of Colombia. This day, the last 18 combatants from this ELN breakaway independent faction demobilized after starting military actions in August 10, 1996. The total number of demobilized illegal armed fighters, including the last 18, is 54 during the whole month of April, in a series of multiple demobilizations. The faction operated in the Municpalities of San Jacinto, Maríalabaja, El Carmen de Bolívar, San Juan Nepomuceno, located in the Department of Bolivar and the Municipalities of Ovejas, Chalán, Colosó and Las Palmitas, located in the Department of Sucre. Among the combatants are 16 women and two newly born children. This demobilization process took place in part due to the pressure of the Army, but also from the FARC, another guerrilla force who is battling other guerrillas (i.e. the ELN ) in order to gain superiority.
Sources: La FM adiostation, El Tiempo newspaper, Military Forces General Command, Semana magazine.
E.R., 9 June 2007


Revolutionary Armed Force of Colombia-People's Army (FARC-EP Fuerzas Arnadas Revolucionarias de Colombia - Ejercito Popular)


image by Pascal Gross and Guillermo Aveledo, 3 June 2000


Emblem
image contributed by E.R., 24 July 2005

I found the official site of the FARC guerrilla group on the web, and you can see their flag. It's the same as the colombian flag, but it has a Colombian map along with two assault rifles crossed . There's also a little squared thing, but I can't see much. The link to it is <burn.ucsd.edu/~farc-ep>. Their official name is: Fuerzas Armadas Revolucionarias de Colombia-Ejército del Pueblo (FARC-EP) or Revolutionary Armed Force of Colombia-People's Army. The guerrilla group known as FARC-EP was created in 1964.
Ramiro Rivera Sanchez,19 January 1999

I belive that the" little squared thing" is an open book.
Jorge Candeias,20 January 1999

Revolutionary Armed Forces, People's Army (FARC-EP Fuerzas Arnadas Revolucionarias de Colombia - Ejercito Popular) - This well-known guerrilla group is the main guerrilla movement in Colombia, above from the National Liberation Army (ELN). The flag of the FARC-EP is a regular Colombian tricolor with the group's logo on its centre. The logo consists of a Colombiam continental map, in white, fimbriated in black. Within the map we see the letters 'FARC-EP' in a bold type, an open book and a pair of crossed, semi-automatic, rifles.
Guillermo Aveledo, 3 June 2000

The correct name of the movement is: Fuerzas Armadas Revolucionarias de Colombia - Ejercito del Pueblo. A short presentation of the FARC, based on Courrier International #711, 17 June 2004 (French translation of a paper by Eduardo Pizarro Leongomez, originally published in El Tiempo, Bogota):   On 9 April 1948, the Liberal leader Jorge Eliecer Galtan was murdered, which triggered violent riots in Bogota, known as Bogotazo. The next ten years are known as the Violencia period, a civil war between the Liberals and the Conservatives that caused more than 200,000 dead. In 1958, the two parties signed the pact of National Front, by which they abandoned violence and shared the power. The President of the Republic was alternatively chosen in each party. The system lasted until 1974. On 27 May 1964, the Colombian army attacked Marquetalia, which was the headquarters of Communist revolutionaries and farmers' self-defense militia, ruled by Manuel Marulanda, aka Tirofijo (Bang on target). Following the assault, the militia were organized into guerillas. Initially called Frente Sur (Front South), the guerillas were renamed FARC two years later. The FARC were reorganized and renamed FARC-EP in 1982. On 28 March 1984, the FARC-EP signed an agreement  in La Uribe with the Colombian government. A cease-of-fire was implemented on 28 May. The agreement included the creation of a legal political party by the FARC-EP, called UP (Patriotic Union). More than 3,500 members of the UP were murdered in the next two years, including two candidates to the Presidential election. In December 1990, the bombing of the Casa Verde, the FARC-EP headquarters, by the Colombian army ended the peace process. A new round of negotiations started on 7 January 1999 between the FARC-EP and Andres Pastrana's government in the demilitarized area of Caguan (42,000 sq. km). The area was placed under the control of the FARC-EP until the breakdown of the negotiations in February 2002. The FARC have today some 15,000-17,000 members.
FARC-EP homepage at <www.farcep.org>.
Ivan Sache, 27 December 2004

From <www.tkb.org>:
"Mothertongue Name: Fuerzas Armadas Revolucionarias de Colombia (FARC).
Aliases: Fuerzas Armadas Revolucionarias de Colombia - Ejercito del Pueblo (FARC-EP).
Base of Operation: Colombia.
Founding Philosophy: The Revolutionary Armed Forces of Colombia (FARC) grew out of the Colombian Communist Party of the 1960s. Unsurprisingly, the FARC was founded as a Communist organization. The FARC leaned towards the Marxist strain of Communism and received a limited amount of funding from the Soviet Union during the Cold War. The FARC's stated goal is to overthrow the current democratic government of Colombia and replace it with a Communist government.
While the FARC is undoubtedly the largest and oldest of the Communist insurgent groups of Colombia, it is not necessarily the most dogmatic in its devotion to the Marxist ideology. In fact, the FARC's growing hand in cocaine trafficking, and even production, coupled with its on-again, off-again peace talks with the Colombian government, indicate that the ideological backbone of the FARC is at best, ill-defined. However, a significant portion of the FARC's leadership, including FARC chief Manuel Marulanda, have been part of the organization since its founding and are presumably still dedicated to its Marxist ideology. The FARC continues to wage a war of words devoted to Marxist principles, despite the fact that many of its battles are fought with the less idealistic motive of controlling the illicit drug inustry.
Current Goals: Today, the FARC's primary goal is territorial control within Colombia. The FARC has several sources for the money it needs to pursue this goal. The majority of its funding comes from the cocaine trade, but the FARC also pursues kidnapping, extortion, and hijacking. In addition to these operations, the FARC also attacks Colombian political and military installations. Its activities frequently disrupt economic activity in Colombia, particularly when conflicts with Colombia's rightist paramilitary groups break out. Ordinary Colombian citizens are often caught in the middle of this violent and bloody struggle.
The FARC's larger goals are a matter for speculation. For four decades the FARC has struggled to overthrow the Colombian government. This does not seem likely unless the FARC dramatically shifts its approach and increases its strength. The more likely outcome is that the FARC will continue to destabilize Colombian democracy but never actually overthrow the government. Furthermore, the FARC's recent participation in peace talks demonstrates a certain willingness to negotiate with its ideological enemies. The FARC's ideological commitment is in doubt, but its immediate goals are not. The FARC aims to maintain its significant financial and territorial power. From all indications, the FARC will continue its violent criminal action for the foreseeable future."
More information at <en.wikipedia.org>.
E.R., 8 June 2005

Variants

1)
image by Eugene Ipavec, Pascal Gross and Guillermo Aveledo, 14 February 2006

A photo of a variant with shield of the FARC flag, appeared on the front page of today's (29 June 2001) Miami Herald, with the headline "Rebels Free Colombian Troops" and the caption describing the release of "242 government soldiers and police released Thursday by the Revolutionary Armed Forces of Colombia [FARC] outside La Macarena, in the heart of a 26,000 square-mile area of jungle and savanna under FARC control. The troops were freed by the rebels in a unilateral hand-over after more than three years in captivity".
Al Kirsch and Jaume Ollé, 29 June 2001

The variant is based on photos at FARC news website and SEMANA magazine.
E.R., 14 February 2006

2)
image by Eugene Ipavec, 17 March 2006

On March 8, 2006, the biggest demobilization yet (outside peace process with the Colombian giovernment) of a guerrilla group, took place on the Department of Tolima. There a FARC guerrilla structure laid down its weapons on a ceremony headed by the Alto Comisionado Para La Paz (High Commissioner For Peace). During this ceremony a new FARC flag variant came to light.
Source: El Mundo newspaper, from the city of Medellín.
E.R., 17 March 2006

3)
image by Eugene Ipavec, 27 May 2006

Another variant of the flag of the Farc Colombian guerrilla. The flag is the same tricolor flag of Colombia, plus the Farc emblem on the middle (outlined only, not in color).
Source: Farc 2006 calendar at <www.farcep.org>.
E.R., 27 May 2006


image located by Esteban Rivera, 31 January 2013

There's currently some direct conversations being held in Havana between the Colombian government and the Farc. During these talks, a variant flag can be observed:
Image: http://ntn24-img.s3.amazonaws.com/sites/default/files/imagecache/320x240/farc_dialogos_colombia_afp_320_.jpg
Source: NTN24, and allied boradcast channel of RCN news channel)
Esteban Rivera, 31 January 2013