Govt announces $43B designated for peace consolidation

The Colombian administration has announced that over the next four years, $43 billion from the recently approved National Development Plan will be spent on peace consolidation programs.

According to the National Planning Department, of the $43 billion (COP 76.5 trillion) assigned by the plan, which was approved by Congress Thursday, $34 billion will go towards confronting groups that operate outside the law, such as the FARC, ELN, and neo-paramilitary drug trafficking organizations operating in vast areas of the country.

Of the $34 billion, $29.2 has been designated for the defense sector, to cover staff costs and the generals’ salaries. The remaining $9 billion is destined for the Ministry of Justice and Interior, with $7.4 billion going towards operational costs, according to Radio Nacional de Colombia.

In regards to the decision, analyists from the economic studies center Anif expressed hope that  the substantial resources designated by President Santos can accomplish the objective of consolidating peace and public security in the country, newspaper El Espectador reported.

The scholars stated that, if this is achieved, the main legacy of the Santos administration, as well as of his predecessor Alvaro Uribe, will be “giving peace of mind back to the citizens of the country, through the strengthening of the security forces and through weakening, though still not completely defeating, the illegal armed groups and drug-traffickers.”

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