The FARC-EP has been on the European Union's terror watch-list since 2002 and on the U.S. terrorism list since 1997.
Foreign Ministers of the European Union will remove Colombia’s FARC-EP guerrilla group from its list of terrorist organizations during the Council of Europe due to take place on Monday in Brussels.
UN Presses Colombia to Pass Peace Legislation Amid Violence
European MP Ramon Jauregui confirmed the measure in an interview with Colombian Caracol Radio, noting the E.U. is optimistic about the peacebuilding process in Colombia and that there is “enthusiasm so this process would move forward.”
Colombia's High Commissioner Rodrigo Rivera welcomed the announcement, saying it had been made possible though fieldwork carried out by international actors to monitor implementation of the peace process.
The decision will temporarily lift sanctions against the former guerrilla group, such as freezing its assets and prohibiting any type of funding.
However, since the peace agreement was signed a year ago, hundreds of social leaders, Afro-Indigenous activists and campesinos have been killed by far-right paramilitaries, putting the entire process at risk.
Earlier this week, the Office of the U.N. High Commissioner for Human Rights (OHCHR) warned authorities that if the state fails to guarantee the security and basic rights of the demobilized soldiers, as well as human rights activists and social leaders, the peace process would be called into further question.
The peace agreement ends 52 years of civil war between government forces and the FARC-EP, the country’s largest rebel army.