The Secretary General of the United Nations, António Guterres, visited Antioquia to commemorate the five years since the signing of the Peace Agreement. During a tour of Dabeiba and Apartadó, the top United Nations diplomat reviewed the implementation of the Agreement.
“Peace does not come from one day to the next. It costs work to build it, take care of it and sustain it, ”said the secretary. “The goal of peace is to avoid having enemies in society, but unfortunately there are enemies of peace”He added.
Guterres also said that Colombia has the “firm support” of the United Nations in this process and affirmed that during this five-year period the agreement in Havana, Cuba has been respected, giving approval to the implementation of the Executive.
“I have witnessed the efforts of the Government and the authorities to carry out the peace programs,” he said, highlighting the participation of women as a cross-cutting axis of the agreement and the progress made in the Pdet.
In the same way, he drew attention to the situation of the exFarc, who face security problems in the territories. The leader of the Commons Party, Rodrigo Londoño, estimates that 300 ex-combatants have been assassinated since the signing of the peace agreement.
Londoño (“Timochenko”) led the negotiations from the former guerrilla and signed peace in 2016, during the administration of Juan Manuel Santos. “If this were a process that was not producing results, we would not have the Secretary General of the United Nations here,” said Londoño.
“I heard with concern that several regions are still affected by the impact of security. It is important to remember that the Peace Agreement includes mechanisms that must be used to protect vulnerable people”, Asserted the diplomat.
Guterres affirmed that the peace of Colombia passes through “the peace of the territories.” With his visit, that multilateral instance gave a boost to the implementation of peace, a work that began during the administration of former President Juan Manuel Santos, passes through the Government of Iván Duque and will be in the hands of whoever arrives at the Casa de Nariño in 2022.
“The objective of peace is to avoid having enemies in a society, but there are enemies of peace and I want to express my solidarity to their victims, families and friends,” he reiterated in Apartadó.
On his tour he also visited the Garment Workshop of the old ETCR of the Llano Grande village, in Dabeiba.
The commemoration of the five years of the signing took place in Antioquia’s Urabá, a region that is home to eight of the 170 municipalities with Pdet (Development Programs with a Territorial Approach).
Investments and resource commitments have been made in this area for 23,000 million pesos. In total, Peace projects in Antioquia have represented investments of 1.5 billion during the current administration.
Defense Minister Diego Molano pointed out that armed groups continue to exist outside the law after the disarmament of the Farc. He stressed that before there were 25,000 men in arms and that now that figure stands at 12,000, approximately.
“We want legal peace to be a reality in the Colombian territories,” said the minister, and emphasized that within the Public Force there were victims of war crimes.
From the Interior Ministry, Minister Daniel Palacios highlighted that there will be a budget of 400 million dollars for 2022, dedicated to Peace matters, and said that the number of men dedicated to the protection of former FARC combatants rose at 1,706.
And it is that one of the issues that has broken the implementation of peace in Colombia is the security of the ex-combatants: around 300 people who decided to surrender their weapons to start a new life were killed in the process.
“Just as there is a need to protect, it is necessary to dismantle the groups responsible for the murders,” said Palacios, adding that the clarification of homicides of social leaders is above 65%, while that of the homicides of exFarc is around 55 %. Palacios says that 27 of the 1,000 municipalities in Colombia concentrate 67% of the attacks to those who surrendered their weapons.
The High Commissioner for Peace, Juan Camilo Restrepo, highlighted that 184 municipalities have been declared free of suspicion of antipersonnel mines. His office prepares this declaration for Montebello, Antioquia, and the department of Cundinamarca.
The former president of Uruguay, Pepe Mujica, and the president of Chile, Sebastián Piñera, greeted Colombia in the commemoration of the five years of the signing. In the framework of this date, it was also known that the United States Department of State plans to remove the extinct FARC guerrilla from the list of international terrorist groups.
“It is clear that the Farc, in the case of the Peace Agreement, became a political party and, of course, they cannot be a terrorist organization. What is clear is that there are some FARC dissidents that continue to commit crimes as a terrorist group and we will continue to act on them to dismantle them, ”Molano commented.