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VP of Colombia to discuss environmental, social damage caused by cocaine trade

VP of Colombia to discuss environmental, social damage caused by cocaine trade

Vice President Francisco Santos Caldern of Colombia will speak about "The Shared Responsibility Initiative: Cocaine's Ecocide in Colombia," an international campaign led by his office to create awareness about the major environmental and social damages resulting from coca cultivation, cocaine production and the international drug trade.

UCLA Newsroom

By Elizabeth Kivowitz Boatright-Simon

WHAT:
Vice President Francisco Santos Calderón of Colombia will speak about "The Shared Responsibility Initiative: Cocaine's Ecocide in Colombia," an international campaign led by his office to create awareness about the major environmental and social damages resulting from coca cultivation, cocaine production and the international drug trade.

On of the world's most biodiverse countries, Colombia has lost nearly 5.5 million of acres of tropical rainforest over the past 20 years to coca cultivation and continues to suffer from frequent drug-fueled violence.

This free public event is sponsored by UCLA's Latin American Institute, the UCLA Burkle Center for International Relations and the UCLA International Institute.

WHO:
Francisco Santos Calderón, vice president of Colombia

WHEN:
3:30–4:30 p.m., Wednesday, Feb. 25

WHERE:
Charles E. Young Grand Salon in Kerckhoff Hall, UCLA campus

BACKGROUND:
Santos was elected vice president in May 2002, with President Alvaro Uribe Vélez, and re-elected in May 2006. While working as a journalist in 1990, he was among a group of reporters kidnapped by Medellín drug kingpin Pablo Escobar and held for nearly eight months. Santos later founded País Libre, an organization that assists victims of kidnapping and their families, and worked as an editor and columnist for the newspaper El Tiempo. In March 2000, following threats from the Revolutionary Armed Forces of Colombia (FARC) guerilla organization, Santos left Colombia. He spent two years as a journalist with El País in Madrid before returning and running for office.

MEDIA CONTACT:
Press interested in attending should call Elizabeth Kivowitz Boatright-Simon of the UCLA Office of Media Relations at 310-206-1458. Courtesy parking will be arranged.

Burkle Center for International Relations