The United Nations on Tuesday will begin its second post-conflict mission in Colombia, this time verifying the effective reincorporation of former FARC fighters.
The reincorporation of the demobilized and disarmed guerrillas has become hotly debated with both the FARC, a key mediator and independent media claiming the government is failing to facilitate a collective reincorporation program.
The United States, on the other hand, has alleged the FARC is not in compliance with the peace deal closed in November last year.
A failed incorporation could lead to the undoing of an important part of the peace deal; the reintegration of the FARC’s 14,000 formerly armed members.
The new political mission, to be headed by a Special Representative of the UN Secretary-General for an initial period of 12 months, is expected to verify implementation of several measures of the Final Agreement, including political, economic and social reincorporation of the FARC-EP; the implementation of personal and collective security guarantees; and comprehensive programs on security and protection measures for communities and organizations in conflict-affected areas.
The UN’s mission chief in Colombia, Jean Arnault, said the international peace observers will undertake an objective and proactive verification.
It will present an impartial balance on compliance with the commitments so far to the parties and to society, aim to propose solutions and combine forces for its implementation, [and] seek to generate confidence and contribute to securing the support of the international community for the peace process in Colombia.
UN mission chief Jean Arnault
In the first months after December 1 last year when the peace deal came into effect, the UN mediated and reported on irregularities that occurred during the FARC’s demobilization and disarmament.
By mid-August the international organization confirmed that the FARC had demobilized and disarmed its troops, allowing it to become a political party after more than half a century of violently opposing governments.