Peace in Colombia, everyone’s task

Five years after the peace accords between the government of Colombia and the FARC, experts point out that it is fragmented, and with a weak implementation of the points raised in these, but they recognize that its main success has been demobilization and passage to life. policy of the largest and oldest guerrilla in Latin America.

In this sense, Dr. Humberto de la Calle, the head of the peace negotiation under President Juan Manuel Santos, told El Heraldo de México that “we must recognize that next year, the electoral process is going to be a momentous moment. . A government that acts vigorously in enforcing the agreement is likely to triumph.

“But there may also be a government that continues to maintain reluctance and shows obstacles to this process.

“We could say that compliance has been partial. I believe that the implementation of the so-called development plans with a territorial approach has gone through restrictions, some of them of a fiscal nature. But what worries me is that it is a program aimed at the ordinary guerrilla, leaving out the recognition of the existence of a conflict, one of whose parties was the guerrilla.

“It is as if the government thinks it is a simple merciful surrender. The serious thing is the omissions, in particular the political reform on which no step has been taken and secondly, the comprehensive rural reform is going too slow, ”said the former negotiator.

De la Calle assured that with this agreement “the community in general has won. There are areas that are absolutely peaceful, in some places the confrontation has disappeared, tourism has appeared in areas that could not be visited before, homicide and kidnapping rates have dropped significantly, in general society increasingly recognizes the need to consolidate peace.

“But I think there are still groups that continue to encourage hatred, that do not have empathy for the victims and that yearn for the continuation of the confrontation. In short, it seems to me that today’s Colombia is better, although it must be recognized that some sources of violence persist ”.

Regarding the fact that the United States removed the Revolutionary Armed Forces of Colombia from the list of terrorist organizations, Dr. De la Calle said that it is a logical decision. The FARC as a guerrilla group does not exist, the ex-combatants who entered the agreement today constitute a legal political party.

“It is an act of realism; naturally, it must be recognized that some dissidents remained or returned to arms and probably they should join that list because of the continuation of their activities, “he said.

The interviewee stressed that “it is worth remembering that we always maintained that the agreement was for the end of the conflict with the FARC guerrilla group. We have always said that peace is a later, longer task, which is the responsibility of the entire Colombian society and the different governments.

“In that sense, it has always been known that the guerrilla group National Liberation Army (ELN) would continue to fight and that organized crime groups would be maintained around drug trafficking,” he said.

He concluded by stating that one day a negotiated peace will be possible over the ELN, although he considered that the government is right when it asks that the guerrilla first release the hostages who are in its power.

By Rosi Sotelo


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