In anticipation of its transition to a legal political group, the Revolutionary Armed Forces of Colombia are set to dissolve its military high command during the 10th National Guerrilla Conference, sources close to the rebel group told Proceso magazine.
Colombia's Threshold of Peace: FARC Marks Last Armed Conference
The high command, known as the Central General Staff and composed of the leading commanders from each of the guerrilla army's blocs, is set to becoming the basis of a provisional leadership body for a legal political party.
The 10th National Guerrilla Conference is set to begin Saturday in an isolated region in the municipality of San Vicente del Caguan, approximately 300 kilometers from Bogota.
Approximately 200 delegates, including some guerrillas who were granted a temporary release from prison, will analyze the contents of the final peace agreement reached with the government of Juan Manuel Santos.
According to Proceso, one of the outstanding issues to resolves is the date that the combatants will turn in their weapons and begin the process of returning to civilian life.
Key issues on the table also include discussions about rural reform — a founding demand of the FARC and cornerstone of the peace deal — and political prisoners, natural resources, and the environment, among other topics, according to a draft agenda seen by Reuters.
Never Again: Colombia Acknowledges 1980s 'Political Genocide'
Sources told Proceso that the new political party will not be launched during the conference but will instead be formally constituted in April or May of next year, after the conclusion of the demobilization process.
300 journalists and 50 guests are also expected to descend on the remote municipality for the 10th National Guerrilla Conference, with some events broadcast online.
The conference is the first of its kind to be fully open to civilians and media.