UN / COLOMBIA

10-Jan-2018 00:02:47
The Head of the UN Mission in Colombia told the Security Council that the reintegration of former FARC combatants is still a “fragile process”, adding that the coming months must be the opportunity to “turn the corner”, and "establish it on a more durable base." UNIFEED
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STORY: UN / COLOMBIA
TRT: 02:47
SOURCE: UNIFEED
RESTRICTION: NONE
LANGUAGE: ENGLISH / SPANISH / NATS

DATELINE: 10 JANUARY 2018, NEW YORK CITY
SHOTLIST
RECENT – NEW YORK CITY

1. Wide shot, exterior United Nations Headquarters

10 JANUARY 2018, NEW YORK CITY

2. Wide shot, Security Council
3. SOUNDBITE (English) Jean Arnault, Special Representative of the Secretary-General (SRSG) and Head of the UN Mission in Colombia:
“We must not forget that we are dealing with a large group of former fighters whose level of accumulated frustration with the reintegration process – illustrated by the number of members still in jail – it is not easy to overcome.”
4. Med shot, delegations
5. SOUNDBITE (English) Jean Arnault, Special Representative of the Secretary-General (SRSG) and Head of the UN Mission in Colombia:
“The next few months must be the opportunity to “turn the corner”, as it were, and establish what is still a fragile process on a more durable base.”
6. Med shot, delegations
7. SOUNDBITE (English) Jean Arnault, Special Representative of the Secretary-General (SRSG) and Head of the UN Mission in Colombia:
“The ELN has voiced very strong reservations on the implementation of the temporary ceasefire and the humanitarian commitments attached to it. And while the ELN leadership has proposed the negotiation of a stronger ceasefire, they have remained silent on their posture after the end of the temporary ceasefire, yesterday.”
8. Med shot, delegations
9. SOUNDBITE (Spanish) Óscar Adolfo Naranjo Trujillo, Vice President of Colombia:
“We regret, indeed we deplore the recent events, but I think it is important that you are aware that the government maintained a willingness to pursue a negotiation process with the ELN in order to extend the bilateral ceasefire which will do allow us to make progress in dialogue and to consolidate any further peace agreement.”
10. Wide shot, Security Council
11. Wide shot, Colombian vice-president arriving at stakeout position
12. SOUNDBITE (Spanish) Óscar Adolfo Naranjo Trujillo, Vice President of Colombia:
“The country has the lowest rate of homicides of the last 42 years – the lowest number of violent deaths-, and an organization -that over 53 years challenged both the Colombian society and the State- that has definitely withdrawn the arms to become a political party. Those two achievements: the reduction of violence and an armed group’s transformation into a political movement are transcendental achievements that have been highly recognized by the Security Council.”
13. Wide shot, Vice president and ambassador listening to reporters questions
14. SOUNDBITE (Spanish) Óscar Adolfo Naranjo Trujillo, Vice President of Colombia:
“The Colombian government has maintained its willingness to advance a dialogue that allows to maintain the ceasefire with the ELN. That willingness was always there and it’s still there. Sadly, and inexplicably, the ELN has disregarded it and it has acted – I reiterate – inexplicably resorting to terrorism.”
15. Wide shot, Colombian vice president leaving
STORYLINE
The Head of the UN Mission in Colombia told the Security Council that the reintegration of former FARC combatants is still a “fragile process.”

Briefing the Security Council today (10 Jan) on the UN Verification Mission in Colombia and the situation in the country, the Special Representative of the Secretary-General (SRSG) and head of the Mission Jean Arnault, raised concern on the reintegration of the former fighters of the Fuerzas Armadas Revolucionarias de Colombia-Ejército del Pueblo (FARC-EP) saying that “we must not forget that we are dealing with a large group of former fighters whose level of accumulated frustration with the reintegration process – illustrated by the number of members still in jail – it is not easy to overcome.”

According to the UN, the political reintegration of the former guerrilla organization is on course in the context of the parliamentary and presidential elections, but the concern remains for the socioeconomic reintegration of the 14,000 former combatants.

Many FARC members have demonstrated on the ground that they are willing and able to engage in agriculture, environmental protection and crop substitution.

Despite promising developments, Arnaul reiterated “the next few months must be the opportunity to “turn the corner”, as it were, and establish what is still a fragile process on a more durable base.”

On the temporary ceasefire between the Government of Colombia and the Ejército de Liberación Nacional (ELN), the chief of the Mission said “the ELN has voiced very strong reservations on the implementation of the temporary ceasefire and the humanitarian commitments attached to it.”

He added “while the ELN leadership has proposed the negotiation of a stronger ceasefire, they have remained silent on their posture after the end of the temporary ceasefire, yesterday.”

On 08 January, Colombian government representatives and the ELN reconvened in Quito to negotiate a possible renewal of the ceasefire, which expired yesterday (09 Jan).

Addressing the Council, the Vice President of Columbia Óscar Adolfo Naranjo Trujillo said “we regret, indeed we deplore the recent events, but I think it is important that you are aware that the government maintained a willingness to pursue a negotiation process with the ELN in order to extend the bilateral ceasefire which will do allow us to make progress in dialogue and to consolidate any further peace agreement.”

Later speaking to the press outside the Security Council, the Colombian Vice President told reporters his country has “the lowest rate of homicides of the last 42 years – the lowest number of violent deaths-," and in reference to FARC he added that Colombia now has "an organization - that over 53 years challenged both the Colombian society and the State - that has definitely withdrawn the arms to become a political party.”

Trujillo added “those two achievements: the reduction of violence and an armed group’s transformation into a political movement are transcendental achievements that have been highly recognized by the Security Council.”

Asked about ELN, he said “the Colombian government has maintained its willingness to advance a dialogue that allows to maintain the ceasefire with the ELN,” adding that the willingness was always there and it’s still there, but “sadly, and inexplicably, the ELN has disregarded it and it has acted – I reiterate – inexplicably resorting to terrorism.”
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