The Hardest Part is Yet to Come for Colombia’s Peace Agreement (E)
“The implementation of the accord will be more challenging than the peace negotiation with the FARC,” said Sergio Jaramillo, Colombia’s High Commissioner for Peace. It is a worry shared by both Revolutionary Armed Forces of Colombia (FARC) commanders and Colombian President Juan Manuel Santos about the current stage in the peace process, spawned by the absence of money to finance the post-conflict initiatives, the threat of right-wing paramilitary groups to guerrillas and social activists, and the government’s lack of legitimacy and control over its territory.
To implement the peace agreement and ensure a peaceful reintegration of 6,300 rebels into society, the government will need to spend approximately $30 billion over the next 10 years. However, Colombia does not have this money at hand and is far from finding the means to ensure a constant income for financing the post-conflict steps.
Paradoxically, President Santos’ signature on the peace agreement poses a risk to its implementation and to lasting peace. Colombia’s leader needs credibility to see the peace process through, and Santos’ unpopularity is compromising the nation’s ability to endure all the changes and challenges that will come with the post-conflict period. Cristobal Vasquez, World Policy Blog