New UN mission to verify rebel reintegration in Colombia

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Colombia's Foreign Minister Maria Angela Holguín Cuéllar briefs the journalists after the Security Council meeting on Columbia peace situation. UN Photo/Mark Garten

The Security Council has moved to establish a second UN political mission in Colombia in continued support of the country's peace process.

The 15 ambassadors on Monday unanimously voted in favour of the new mission, which follows on from another UN operation which completes its work in September.

The Colombian authorities and the rebel group FARC signed a peace deal in November 2016 which brought an end to more than 50 years of conflict.

Dianne Penn reports.

The Security Council vote came just weeks after FARC rebels turned over the last of their individual weapons to UN observers.

The new mission will focus on the political, economic and social reintegration of the group's members, as well as security and protection guarantees.

United Kingdom ambassador Matthew Rycroft said a sustainable and lasting peace in Colombia will depend upon their "successful reincorporation" into civilian life.

He said the Council has witnessed an "extraordinary journey" on the part of the South American country.

"Colombia has offered a beacon of hope for the world. This chamber is no stranger to the worst conflicts and crises of our time. In too many places war is the norm and peace remains a distant dream. Thanks in small part to our efforts, to our unity, Colombia is showing that peace is possible. I encourage all of us to continue to demonstrate that unity and stand with all of the people of Colombia during the next phase of the peace process."

Colombia's Foreign Minister Maria Angela Holguín Cuéllar expressed thanks to Council members for adopting the resolution.

She said their participation had been "very important" to strengthening trust-building between the two sides to the peace deal.

Dianne Penn, United Nations.

Duration: 1’23″

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