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UN Welcomes Ceasefire With Citizen Participation in Colombia

  • UN Secretary General, Antonio Guterres. Aug. 3, 2023.

    UN Secretary General, Antonio Guterres. Aug. 3, 2023. | Photo: Twitter/@NTANewsNow

Published 3 August 2023

The bilateral ceasefire to be in effect for 6 months will have a National Participation Committee for citizen participation in the country's peace process.

The Secretary General of the United Nations (UN), António Guterres, welcomed the beginning of the ceasefire between the Government of Colombia and the guerrilla National Liberation Army (ELN).

The UN Extends the Mandate of Its Mission in Colombia

UN spokesman Farhan Haq said in a statement that "the Secretary-General congratulates the Government of Colombia and the National Liberation Army (ELN) for initiating a new stage in their peace process, with the entry into force today of their bilateral ceasefire agreement and following the installation of the National Participation Committee." 

The bilateral ceasefire, to be in effect for 6 months, will have a National Participation Committee, an instance that will coordinate the participation of the civil society in the peace talks. It will bring to the negotiations citizens contributions and petitions. 

At the ceremony for the Committee's installation, headed by Colombian President Gustavo Petro, its 81 delegates were presented. It is composed of members of social organizations, trade unions, victims' movements, business organizations, among other sectors.

The tweet reads, "UN Secretary General António Guterres welcomed the start of the ceasefire between the government and the ELN: "if the parties adhere in good faith to the ceasefire they will be able to significantly reduce violence."

The UN Security Council has unanimously approved the extension of the mandate of the Verification Mission in Colombia to monitor the implementation of the ceasefire.

"Under the mandate granted yesterday [August 2] by the Security Council, the Verification Mission is ready to play its role in monitoring and verifying the ceasefire," Haq said, noting that the UN is also ready "to support the fundamental work of the National Participation Committee in designing an inclusive participation of Colombian society in the peace process."

The spokesman said Guterres urged the international community to continue to support efforts to advance peace in Colombia "both politically and through support for the implementation of the accords."

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