Colombia’s peace process is taking ‘deep roots’, but all sides must work together to overcome lingering challenges

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“As we instrumentality banal today, we tin confidently affirm that the implementation of the bid process is taking heavy roots,” Mr. Guterres said successful Bogotá during an lawsuit commemorating the 2016 bid woody betwixt the Colombian Government and that Revolutionary Armed Forces of Colombia, oregon FARC-EP, that ended the Western hemisphere’s longest-running war.

To a satellite of geopolitical divides, ne'er ending wars and multiplication of conflicts, Colombia sends a wide message: the clip to put successful bid is now.

— António Guterres (@antonioguterres) November 24, 2021

Speaking from the office of the Special Jurisdiction for Peace, 1 of the main justness mechanisms created arsenic portion of the bid woody betwixt the Government and the guerrilla movement, the Secretary-General said the 5th day is simply a grounds to the committedness of the parties, but besides of the State institutions and the vibrant Colombian civilian society, facing each difficulties including tackling the COVID-19 pandemic.

Undeniable achievements

Among the “undeniable achievements” the accord has yielded, Mr. Guterres noted among others that the information that a guerrilla that had waged equipped combat for fractional a period is contiguous a governmental enactment and that the bulk of ex-combatants, immoderate 13,000, are striving “admirably” to physique caller lives.

Moreover, helium recalled his sojourn connected Tuesday to Antioquia’s mountainside colony of Llano Grande, wherever helium had witnessed “determination successful the look of adversity and uncertainty” arsenic the section community, ex-combatants and constabulary are present surviving and moving side-by-side.

“I besides witnessed how, with Government enactment and support, the enlargement of locally designed improvement and societal extortion programs are bringing bid dividends to conflict-affected communities,” the Secretary-General said, adding that: “Ensuring the sustainability of these efforts volition beryllium captious successful the future.”;

Colombia is an inspiring example: “In a satellite marked by conflicts, galore of them without an extremity successful sight, a bid statement negotiated to extremity a struggle that galore believed to beryllium unsolvable is thing highly unsocial and valuable,” stated the UN chief.

Secretary-General António Guterres talks to villagers successful  Llano Grande, Colombia, wherever  helium  witnessed however  the bid    process   was processing  successful  Colombia.


Secretary-General António Guterres talks to villagers successful Llano Grande, Colombia, wherever helium witnessed however the bid process was processing successful Colombia.

Hard won bid comes with risks

Yet, contempt the coagulated progress, the Secretary-General cautioned that each sides “must beryllium wide astir the risks” that whitethorn endanger the semipermanent sustainability of the agreement.

“Ethnic communities and women and girls are ever peculiarly affected,” said the UN chief, besides spotlighting different factors that could contravene the deal, including unit by equipped groups successful transportation with cause trafficking; threats and murders of ex-combatants, societal leaders and quality rights defenders, often women and indigenous populations; displacement and confinement; unit against women and intersexual violence; and the recruitment of children.

Since the signing of the Peace Agreement, much than 300 ex-combatants and 477 quality rights defenders and civic leaders person been killed, according to information from the United Nations Verification Mission successful Colombia.

“Each decease is itself a tragedy,” Mr. Guterres continued. “Each decease sends a devastating connection to these communities that inactive await the promises of the Accord.”

“I americium assured of the explicit determination of the President that the information provisions of the Agreement volition beryllium afloat implemented, arsenic good arsenic each the chapters connected agrarian betterment and solution to the occupation of illicit cause trafficking and each the complexity that comes from the implementation of the Peace Agreement,” the Secretary-General stated.

UN Secretary General António Guterres delivers his code   astatine  the Special Justice for Peace lawsuit   successful  Colombia.


UN Secretary General António Guterres delivers his code astatine the Special Justice for Peace lawsuit successful Colombia.

Challenges are portion of the process

Despite these challenges to peace, Mr. Guterres said “it is not excessively precocious to reverse this trend”, and stressed that it would beryllium indispensable for the afloat implementation of the bid accord’s information provisions, arsenic good arsenic those dealing with agrarian reforms and tackling cause trafficking.

He recalled that the Peace Agreement itself reflected the world of the information that transformations of this magnitude volition instrumentality time. “There are inactive 10 years of what was initially planned” and “the challenges are portion of the bid processes.”

“There are galore issues connected which you tin disagree successful a democracy, but bid tin nary longer beryllium 1 of them,” helium argued earlier making a telephone for Colombia “to stay connected this way of peace-building and persist successful overcoming challenges”.

To this end, helium encouraged each Colombians to travel the roadmap acceptable retired successful the Peace Agreement, which not lone question to soundlessness the weapons, but “aimed astatine transforming the basal causes of the struggle and opening to heal the wounds, truthful that atrocities committed everyplace bash not hap again.”

With those goals successful mind, the UN main noted advancement connected “the instauration of a transitional justness strategy that aims astatine justness for victims and survivors, arsenic good arsenic ensuring lasting peace.”

Indeed, helium said: “We person seen humanities indictments for warfare crimes and designation of unprecedented responsibility. We person seen affectional encounters that unite victims and those responsible. And we person seen however families yet travel retired of the uncertainty astir the destiny of their missing loved ones.”

Concluding his remarks, the Secretary-General said that “after much than 5 decades of conflict, and a heavy consciousness of the suffering it caused, we person a motivation work to warrant that this bid process is successful.”

Testimony of victims: infinite hope

Ahead of his remarks, the Secretary-General heard testimonies from victims, including of Ana Sofía Martínez, whose begetter disappeared 20 years agone aft helium was detained by the FARC-EP.

After calling connected each parties, the Government and FARC-EP, to enactment speech their disagreements and fulfill their obligations, Ms. Martínez said she felt tired, bittersweet and happy.

“Tired of bureaucracy and protocol; bittersweet due to the fact that disappearances proceed to hap and the guarantees that the State gives astir post-conflict activities are progressively vague; and blessed due to the fact that successful the look of truthful overmuch adversity, we proceed dreaming, sustained by infinite anticipation and much than 1 100 1000 reasons. For the radical inactive missing, we indispensable hope. And we importune connected action,” she affirmed.

Another subordinate was Father Francisco de Roux, President of the Commission for the Clarification of the Truth, who listed the affirmative actions by 1 broadside oregon another, but besides stressed that unfortunately, nary steps had been taken to execute what helium called “the large peace”: a bid that is supra each enactment interests.

Also participating successful the lawsuit were erstwhile President Juan Manuel Santos and erstwhile FARC commandant Rodrigo Londoño, signatories of the Peace Agreement, and existent President Iván Duque, arsenic good arsenic the existent President of the Special Jurisdiction for Peace, Eduardo Cifuentes Muños, and different actors who promoted the negotiations that led to the signing of the Agreement. All recognized that determination are inactive galore challenges, but stressed that the bid process continues to determination forward.

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