The former insurgent group Revolutionary Alternative Force of the Common (FARC) handed over 19,113 grams in gold to the Colombian government to help victims of the decades-long armed conflict as part of the peace agreement reached on 2016.
Pastor Alape Lascarro, one of the leaders of the FARC, tweeted Sunday that the now political party gave “19,113 grams in gold, adding up to a total of 155,875 grams, besides 197 platinum grams, 2,009 million Colombian pesos in cash and US$450,000,” to the Special Assets Society (SAE), now in charge of managing the assets handed in by the FARC for peace building and compensation of the victims.
The peace agreement committed the then-called Revolutionary Armed Forces of Colombia to “entrust all war assets to compensate victims” and for the reincorporation of former guerrilla fighters into society. But despite their will for peace, many voices in Colombia still oppose the demobilization of FARC and the fact that now they take part in the political sphere as a legal party participating in elections.
“This Sunday March 18 we did a new transfer to the Special Assets Society (SAE) as part of our promise to entrust all war assets for the compensation of victims and reincorporation.”
In August 2017, Pastor Alape published the FARC asset list valued at about US$337.6 million, saying the inventory had been done “as exhaustive as possible.”
But some criticized the list for including brooms, mops, pots, squeezers and other households tools for daily use along with military equipment, livestock, money and land. The list was deemed as an insult and some believe the political successor of the insurgent group is hiding assets and is unwilling to repair the damage done during the armed conflict.
The FARC responded by saying that their intention was to detail every posession they had, and that they considered those items as war assets because they got them while active as a guerrilla group.
Back then Alape said that the independent fund for compensations of the victims should not be confused with the list of assets, which was just a small part of what they would contribute for peace. He also said these contributions were voluntary.
“What we are showing here is our will to contribute resources in support of the peace process, which also means to recognize the victims, but the country shouldn't be fooled into thinking the FARC are the [only] ones that should be doing this.”
Todd Howland, who was the U.N. Human Rights High Commissioner in Colombia, warned that the process was being politicized, ignoring practical issues such as actually using the assets to help the victims.