Following its recent three-day visiting mission to Colombia, the Security Council today adopted a presidential statement paying tribute to that country’s people for embarking on the path to peace after more than 50 years of conflict.
In a statement issued by Elbio Rosselli (Uruguay), its President for May, the Council underlined the significant benefits that a lasting peace would bring to all of Colombia, emphasizing that the country’s peace process would be a positive example to the rest of the world.
The Council recognized the long-running conflict’s impact, particularly on the most‑affected communities, and expressed concern over the recent killings of some of their members, including community leaders. Acknowledging the significant challenges involved in implementing the Final Peace Agreement, it welcomed the progress made and the commitment demonstrated by the Government of Colombia and the Revolutionary Armed Forces of Colombia‑People's Army (FARC-EP) in that regard.
Welcoming the peaceful arrival of almost 7,000 FARC-EP members in the agreed zones, and the start of the process of laying down arms, as well as the continuing commitment of the parties to enable the FARC to lay down their individual weapons by the agreed 180-day deadline. The Council noted that sustained implementation of the Peace Agreement — including the prompt adoption of all agreed measures to ensure effective reincorporation and reconciliation, with the full participation of women — would be vital to securing a stable and lasting peace for all Colombians.
The meeting began at 11:54 a.m. and ended at 11:57 a.m.
The full text of presidential statement S/PRST/2017/6 reads as follows:
“During its visit to Colombia from 3 to 5 May 2017, the Security Council welcomed the opportunity to engage in dialogue with President Santos and senior representatives of the Government of Colombia, leaders of the FARC-EP, members of Congress representing the spectrum of political parties, the Tripartite Monitoring and Verification Mechanism, members of civil society, local communities, the UN mission and the UN country Team in Colombia in Bogotá and Vista Hermosa, and thanks the Government of Colombia, the United Nations mission in Colombia and all its interlocutors for the fruitful discussions.
“The Security Council pays tribute to the courage of Colombians for embarking on the path to peace, emphasizes the magnitude of this opportunity after more than 50 years of conflict, noting that levels of violence are at their lowest level for over 40 years, and underlines the significant benefits to the entire country associated with a lasting peace and the potential for Colombia’s peace process to be a positive example to the rest of the world.
“The Security Council acknowledges the significant challenges involved in implementation of the Final Peace Agreement and welcomes the progress made by the Government of Colombia and the FARC-EP in implementing the Agreement and their commitment to achieving a transition to peace that benefits all Colombians.
“In that regard, the Security Council welcomes the peaceful arrival of almost 7,000 members of the FARC-EP in the agreed zones and points and the start of the process of laying down of arms. The Security Council welcomes the continued commitment of the parties to work together to enable FARC to lay down their individual weapons by the agreed 180-day deadline.
“The Security Council notes that, in addition to the laying down of arms, sustained implementation of the Peace Agreement, including the prompt adoption of all agreed measures to ensure effective reincorporation and reconciliation, with the full participation of women, will be vital to securing a stable and lasting peace for all Colombians. The Security Council notes that the particular needs of affected groups must be central to this effort.
“The Security Council recognizes the impact of the conflict, particularly on those communities most affected by it, expresses concern at recent killings of some of their members, including community leaders, welcomes the Government’s efforts and commitment at the highest level to addressing this issue and calls for even stronger action to ensure the security of these communities and the protection of their leaders.
“The Security Council thanks the Special Representative of the Secretary‑General and his team for their efforts to date and underlines its confidence in the mission’s readiness to complete its responsibilities as set out in resolutions 2261 (2016) and 2307 (2016). The Security Council thanks those countries, including CELAC countries, who have contributed observers to the UN mission.
“The Security Council recognizes the contribution of all parties involved in Colombia’s peace process, in particular Cuba and Norway as guarantors, and Chile and Venezuela as accompanying countries.
“The Security Council recalls its full commitment to the peace process and reiterates its determination to support Colombia’s implementation of the Final Peace Agreement in accordance with resolution 2261 (2016) and to continue to play a constructive and active role in the months ahead.”