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Kyle Johnson

Senior Analyst, Colombia
Bogotá, Colombia

Crisis Group Role

Kyle Johnson is Crisis Group's Senior Analyst for Colombia since January 2016. He has over 10 years of experience studying the Colombian armed conflict and related issues, and has lived in Bogotá for more than 6 years. Kyle has extensive field experience in the country and has focused on conflict dynamics and peacebuilding at a local level.

Areas of Expertise

  • The Colombian armed conflict
  • Drug trafficking and illegal economies
  • Disarmament, demobilization and reintegration (DDR)
  • Colombian politics
  • Armed conflict theories
  • Role of violence in social power

Professional Background

Kyle worked for over two years at the Bogotá­-based NGO Corporación Nuevo Arco Iris, as well as in Colombia's National Center for Historic Memory. He also served for over two years at the International Organization for Migration as the Coordinator of its Analysis Unit.

He studied Political Science at the University of Connecticut and received a Master's in Political Science from Universidad de los Andes in Bogotá.

Select Publications


  • English (native)
  • Spanish (fluent)

In The News

25 Mar 2018
El Eln [colombiano] estuvo en consultas internas hasta el martes pasado y si en esas reuniones acordaron hacer un desescalamiento podríamos estarlo viendo en este momento. Vanguardia

Kyle Johnson

Senior Analyst, Colombia
2 Mar 2018
[Colombia's FARC leader] Timochenko’s discourse has to do with trying to pressure the government, not only for FARC’s own political game but also because of the elections coming up. Colombia Reports

Kyle Johnson

Senior Analyst, Colombia
15 Feb 2018
The [Colombian National Liberation Army (ELN) should] realise that its bid for social participation in the peace talks actually depends on the cessation of its hostilities. The Bogotà Post

Kyle Johnson

Senior Analyst, Colombia
7 Feb 2018
A few years down the line, changing the acronym [of FARC (The Revolutionary Armed Forces of Colombia)] may not be the worst idea. At a subconscious level, people link FARC to violence. The Christian Science Monitor

Kyle Johnson

Senior Analyst, Colombia
9 Nov 2017
[Colombian armed groups] offer quite an outlet for frustrated Revolutionary Armed Forces of Colombia (FARC) members, for whom the peace agreements are not living up to expectations. The World Weekly

Kyle Johnson

Senior Analyst, Colombia
28 Jun 2017
There is a [...] belief in Colombia that if you are an illegal armed group without a particular ideology, fighting the state would be enough to pressure the government into entering a peace process. IRIN News

Kyle Johnson

Senior Analyst, Colombia

Latest Updates

Colombia’s Peace at Stake in Polarised Election

Colombians head to the polls on 27 May to choose a new president. The frontrunners have starkly different views on peace talks with guerrillas and how to handle Venezuelan refugees. In this Q&A, our Colombia Senior Analyst Kyle Johnson surveys the field of candidates.

Also available in Español

¿Se puede derrotar militarmente al Eln?

Negociar sigue siendo la mejor opción frente al Eln. Sin embargo, el grupo recientemente ha minado fuertemente la viabilidad política de la negociación en más de una ocasción. Si no se le puede derrotar y no parece querer negociar en serio, ¿qué se debería hacer? 

Originally published in El Espectador

¿Tienen futuro las negociaciones con el ELN?

La decisión del gobierno colombiano de levantarse de la mesa después del atentado en Barranquilla profundiza la crisis del proceso de negociación con el Ejército de Liberación Nacional (ELN). Las divisiones internas del ELN y el hecho de no pactar otro cese al fuego podrían darle el golpe de gracia a las negociaciones.

Originally published in Razón Pública

A Wary Farewell to Arms for the FARC

Since Colombia ratified a revised peace accord to end the country’s long insurgency, FARC rebels have moved rapidly to ad hoc cantonment sites where they will demobilise under UN supervision. But the FARC leadership’s commitment to the deal is under pressure from disparate elements in its rank and file.