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Peace “is being built” in Colombia, praises Guterres on the anniversary of the pact with FARC


Peace “is built” in Colombia, Guterres praises on the anniversary of the pact with FARC = (Video + Photos) = Bogotá, 23 Nov 2021 (AFP) – Peace “is built” in Colombia and that makes it a world example, praised the UN Secretary General, Antonio Guterres, upon his arrival in Bogotá on Monday. Guterres gave a message of “solidarity” to Colombians for the fifth anniversary of the peace agreement that disarmed the FARC guerrillas, and that he supported actively the United Nations Organization. “In a world in which we unfortunately see so many conflicts, it is very important to visit a country where peace is being built,” he said in a statement to the press. The Portuguese diplomat will participate in the commemoration of the pact that ended a conflict in little more than half a century. Guterres insisted on highlighting Colombia as a world “example” for the peace commitments that it has been fulfilling, despite an upturn in violence in some parts and whose victims are former combatants and human rights activists. The secretary will carry out a two-day visit in which he will meet with victims of the conflict, government delegates and former senior FARC commanders. Almost 13,000 men and women gave up the armed struggle, to rejoin civilian life under the supervision of the ONU. Of that total, about 7,000 were combatants and they handed over their weapons to the observers of that organization, for their subsequent melting. Guterres’ predecessor, South Korean Ban Ki Moon, accompanied the agreement signed on November 24, 2016. Antioquia department (northwest) accompanied by the president, Iván Duque, to visit one of the territories where a group of ex-guerrillas lives. There he will also meet Rodrigo Londoño, or “Timochenko”, commander of the ex-guerrilla. The secretary has noticed a “deterioration” in the security conditions of the ex-combatants. At least 290 of them have been assassinated by ex-companions who remained in arms or former enemies at the time of the conflict, according to United Nations figures, although after 2016 violence declined, dissidents from the FARC, the ELN, the last guerrilla recognized in Colombia, and drug trafficking gangs feed a new wave of crime sponsored by the illegal drug business. “Your visit is a message for the country to persist on the path of peace and reconciliation,” Carlos Ruiz Massieu wrote on Twitter, the UN chief of mission in Colombia, who verifies the progress of the agreement. On Wednesday he will hold meetings with delegates of the special justice system that established the agreement to try the worst crimes committed during the conflict. das / vel / dga

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