Granma | June 30, 2017
On June 27, the Colombian people experienced one of the most important days of its history, with the completion of laying down of arms on the part of the Revolutionary Armed Forces- People’s Army (FARC-EP), in the Buenavista area, located in the municipality of Mesetas en Meta.
The first words of the ceremony were spoken by the head of the UN mission in Colombia, Jean Arnault, who emphasized that since August of 2016, the bilateral ceasefire has been fully respected and a total of 7,132 individual weapons have been received in the area.
“As of the first of August, the mission will have removed the containers from the local zones. In terms of the removal of caches, we report that 77 caches have been dismantled to date,” Arnault explained.
This event symbolizes the end of a conflict which has lasted more than 50 years in Colombia, leaving innumerable victims across the country.
In the case of other insurgent groups, the April 19 Movement (M-19) and the Popular Liberation Army (EPL) negotiated peace agreements in the 1990s and began a process similar to the current one, at that time. The laying down of arms on their part paved the way for their re-insertion into society as political organizations.
DELIVERY OF ALL WEAPONS COMPLETED
The FARC-EP has made the commitment, throughout the peace process, to hand over 100% of the weapons they possess.
“The laying down of arms, fully executed to date, is but one of the mutual commitments to be fulfilled,” affirmed insurgent leader Pablo Catatumbo.
The support of the international community, especially guarantor countries Cuba, Ecuador, Venezuela, Norway and Chile, along with the United Nations, has been fundamental to securing the peace accords. (Excerpts from TelesSUR)