We asked the people we accompany about the peace agreement, how they think it will change the situation in Colombia, what their expectations and hopes are once peace is signed with the FARC, and what the risks are that exist in the regions.
Maritze Trigos Torres
The peace agreements cannot be a DEAD LETTERS, they must become genuine commitments, LIVING LETTERS, which transform the country, towards a peace with social justice.
We hope that soon the ELN will sit down with the State at the negotiation tables.
It will be a process of many years, the conflict will increase, which is why we don’t talk about a post-conflict but rather a post-agreement, which is why there is such an urgent need for support from friendly countries without particular interests, and international organisms, and also support from the church and social organisations.
Olga Silva, Humanidad Vigente
The signature of the agreements in Havana, between the Government and the FARC guerrillas, which would provide a political exit to the armed confrontation, will give the Colombian people an opportunity for the establishment to deal with the structural causes that have generated the armed conflict, and the people we be able to take part in the economic, social and political transformations that are necessary for Colombia to stop being one of the countries with the most inequality and highest numbers of serious human rights violations. There will no longer be a justification for the Government of the day to spend a large proportion of the national budget on war, which should instead be put towards the social welfare of the Colombian nation.
One big risk is the threat posed by the paramilitary groups that are present in some parts of the country and are determined, both them and the people behind them, on derailing the end the armed conflict, because they benefit from the war and do not want it to end. This is why a real and effective dismantlement of paramilitarism is needed, which these days has many names: BACRIM, post-demobilisation groups, neo-paramilitary groups, Rastrojos, Urabeños , etc…
Father Alberto Franco, Inter-Church Justice and Peace Commission
The agreement in Havana is to end the armed conflict, a condition for building peace. But the transformation will depend on bringing peace with social justice and the necessary democratic changes that the country needs.
I think that the agreement to end the armed conflict has some risks. The first is that areas held by the guerrillas will be taken over, for example, by paramilitarism.
A second risk is that at the moment of implementation, the communities who have been victims are left on the margin, and that money is thrown away without concern for the communities’ processes for rebuilding in the long term.