July 3, 2020
A thorough look at expenditures to implement the 2016 peace accord, finding much of them to be behind schedule.
July 1, 2020
A conversation about peace accord implementation with Victoria Sandino, one of the FARC’s five senators.
June 26, 2020
The Kroc Institute of Notre Dame University, which the peace accord gives a formal role in verifying compliance with accord commitments, releases its latest report, covering December 2018 to November 2019. Of 578 different commitments laid out in the accord, Kroc finds that the parties have fulfilled 25 percent completely, 15 percent are on pace for completion, and 36 percent have undergone “minimal” compliance, while work has yet to begin on 24 percent of commitments.
“The report emphasizes that implementation in Colombia is at a crucial point, transitioning from a focus on short-term efforts to medium- and long-term priorities, as well as focusing more on the provisions with a territorial focus.”
June 16, 2020
The fourth report on accord implementation from Notre Dame’s Kroc Institute, which the peace accord gives a role in monitoring and verification.
June 16, 2020
An English executive summary of the fourth report on accord implementation from Notre Dame’s Kroc Institute, which the peace accord gives a role in monitoring and verification.
June 16, 2020
A discussion of the challenges of implementing the peace accord during the COVID-19 emergency, with Emilio Archila, presidential advisor for Stabilization and Consolidation; Niels Annen, vice-minister of foreign relations of Germany; Francisco de Roux, president of the Truth Commission; Stefan Peters, director of the Instituto Colombo-Alemán para la Paz; and Laura Barrios of the Universidad del Rosario.
May 19, 2020
Legislators from the ruling Centro Democrático party call a hearing on “the FARC’s non-compliance with the accord,” alleging that only 85 percent of FARC members reported in 2017 are continuing in the process,” and that the FARC has yet to turn over the vast majority of its declared assets. FARC legislators respond that the government was slow to secure assets like real estate, much of which may have fallen into the hands of dissident groups.
At that hearing, Defense Minister Carlos Holmes Trujillo—a politician who was a leading voice urging a “no” vote in the October 2016 plebiscite on the peace accord—suggests looking into “whether or not it would be appropriate to make some changes” in the accord’s implementation, without affecting its text.
May 18, 2020
A report from the Colombian Presidency’s stabilization and consolidation advisor, Emilio Archila, about implementation of the peace accord during the COVID-19 crisis.
May 11, 2020
A discussion of peace accord implementation amid the COVID-19 crisis, with Senator Iván Cepeda; Marco Romero of CODHES; Elena Ambrossi, a former member of the government peace negotiation team; Rodrigo Uprimny of DeJusticia; Representative Juanita Goebertus; Saúl Franco of the Truth Commission; and Representative Feliciano Valencia.
May 8, 2020
A book-length review of FARC compliance with its peace accord commitments, by the ex-guerrillas’ representatives to the joint verification commission CSIVI.
May 6, 2020
Letter addressed to Carlos Ruiz Massieu Special Representative of the United Nations Secretary General Verification Mission in Colombia
Bogotá, April 28, 2020
We are writing to you to share our concern and, through you, to alert the Secretary General and the members of the Security Council about attacks against the implementation of the Peace Agreement in Colombia in times of coronavirus.
As the Defendamos la Paz movement, we raise our voice of protest against the instrumentalization of the pandemic to undermine the Peace Agreement. The health crisis does not only hide the inaction of the Government. More importantly, it fuels the governming party’s campaign against peace implementation.
Defendamos la Paz is against designs aimed at making reforms to the Peace Agreement, which the Government and the ruling party failed to obtain through legislation, become reality through the back door, while citizens remain focused on the pandemic.
We call the attention of the Verification Mission, the General Secretariat and the Security Council to the events listed below.
1- THE INCREASE IN MURDERS OF EXCOMBATANTS AND SOCIAL LEADERS
We are approaching the number of 200 ex-combatants killed. The Verification Mission has registered 197 homicides since the signing of the Peace Agreement. To this number must be added 39 assassination attempts and 13 disappearances of former Farc-EP members.
As for human rights defenders, the Office of the United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights verified 108 homicides in 2019 and registered 56 more denounced cases for 2000 as of March 24.
The Government remains silent in the face of this attack on peace, there are no initiatives to stop the bleeding and the pandemic has served to camouflage its passivity. The security forces do not react, the Attorney General’s Office does not advance enough and the instruments provided by the Peace Agreement, such as the National Commission for Security Guarantees, are not convened by the Government.
You yourself pointed it out before the Security Council: “No efforts must be spared with regard to those facing specific risks, given their roles in the promotion of human rights and the implementation of the peace agreement, and those who laid down their weapons and remain committed to the peace process.”
Defendamos la Paz requests, once again, the immediate convocation of the National Commission for Security Guarantees, the Commission for Monitoring, Promotion and Verification of Implementation and the tripartite Attorney General-FARC-Verification Mission commission.
2- THE GOVERNMENT’S PLANS
In the latest management report of the Presidential Advisor for Stabilization and Consolidation, which covers the period August 7, 2018 – March 31, 2020, the Government revealed intentions to evade compliance with the Peace Agreement and national regulations and jurisprudence. We mention:
1- The expulsion of FARC members from Congress
The Government insisted on the withdrawal of senators and representatives from the FARC until they carry out the sentences dictated by the Special Peace Jurisdiction. This proposal was the subject of a defeated draft legislative act in Congress, a process later studied by the Constitutional Court. In the view of Defendamos la Paz, this point was settled both in the legislative and judicial branches and there can be no modifications.
2- Loss of transitional justice benefits
The Government has warned that it will seek the removal of transitional justice benefits for ex-FARC-EP combatants who have not turned over their declared assets by July 31. The ex-FARC-EP combatants reported that they handed over the inventory and, once disarmed, they lost the ability to guard some of the assets in conflict zones. Several of them have been occupied by third parties. Defendamos la Paz believes that this obligation of the Peace Agreement must be fulfilled as soon as possible in the framework of dialogue and good faith and warns about the danger of its politicized use to unleash de facto reforms not obtained in Congress.
3- Glyphosate spraying
The Government continues planning to spray with glyphosate. From the governing party and allied sectors, calls for the start of fumigations during quarantine have been reinforced. The Constitutional Court has conditioned spraying on the fulfillment of a list of requirements related to the Peace Agreement. Several of these cannot be met during a period of social distancing. Defendamos la Paz reiterates its rejection of glyphosate fumigation, especially in times of isolation when families depend on basic food crops.
3- PAROLE DURING THE PANDEMIC
Decree 546 of 2020, which authorizes house arrest during the pandemic, leaves out members of the security forces and the FARC-EP. Defendamos la Paz states that this exclusion not only lacks the slightest humanitarian sense, but also constitutes a violation of the Agreement, which establishes conditional liberty for those who accept the jurisdiction of the Special Justice for Peace.
4- DEMANDS TO DEFUND PEACE
The pandemic serves as an excuse to demand the reduction of funding for peace. The governming party proposed that part of the funds for the implementation of the Havana accords be reprioritized toward Covid 19 health needs, for basic food, and to save small and medium-sized companies. Defendamos la Paz believes that the health of Colombians in the midst of war cannot be guaranteed and, therefore, the commitment to peace is part of the health response. Rather, we call for speeding up the implementation of health projects in the Territorially Focused Development Plans (PDET).
Mr. Ruiz Massieu, you, the Secretary-General, and the Security Council must know that the country has not escaped the authoritarian discourses that go against the separation of powers. For example, a governming party spokesperson called for the closing of Congress during the pandemic. The natural head of this political force, former President Álvaro Uribe Vélez, called for its reduction, on the verge of a ruling by the State Council that could make the 16 seats for peace [temporary congressional seats for victims’ organizations] contemplated in the Peace Agreement a reality. The Government has not rejected these proposals.
The Secretary General was right when he called for a global ceasefire. At Defendamos la Paz, we believe, like him, that the more we’re in a pandemic, the more we need peace.
Mr. Ruiz Massieu, there is no doubt; in Colombia, a pandemic is being used to dodge peace commitments; the disease of coronavirus cannot lend itself to strengthen the disease of war. We ask you, Secretary-General Guterres and the members of the Security Council to help us avoid this.
May 4, 2020
The think tank affiliated with the FARC political party looks at budgeting for implementation of the first and costliest chapter (“rural reform”) of the 2016 peace accord.
April 30, 2020
The think tank affiliated with the FARC party responds to findings published in the March 26, 2020 UN Secretary General report on peace implementation.
April 30, 2020
A detailed look at how the participatory elements of peace accord implementation have been working.
April 28, 2020
A discussion of peace accord implementation during the time of coronavirus, with María Alejandra Vélez of the Universidad de los Andes, Kyle Johnson of the Kroc Institute, and Juan Carlos Garzón of the Fundación Ideas para la Paz.
April 25, 2020
A report from a think tank affiliated with the FARC political party alleges that the Territorially Focused Development Programs (PDET) are departing from the vision foreseen in the peace accords’ first chapter.
April 18, 2020
April 17, 2020
A conversation about how to implement peace accord commitments amid the COVID-19 crisis, with Emilio Archila (Presidential Advisor for Stabilization and Consolidation); Ricardo Téllez / Rodrigo Granda (FARC), and Consuelo Corredor (CINEP).
April 15, 2020
An investigation of what COVID-19 might mean for the balance between armed and criminal groups; the humanitarian situation; migration and borders; social protest; the security forces; and implementation of the peace accord.
April 7, 2020
A data-filled report on the current status of implementation of the FARC peace accord, compiled by a group of pro-peace members of Colombia’s Congress. (link at juanitaenelcongreso.com)
April 7, 2020
March 31, 2020
A wide-ranging quarterly report about the state of accord implementation, from the UN Verification Mission in Colombia. (Link at undocs.org)
March 26, 2020