Wednesday, 20. March 2019

FARC-EPTo achieve the signing of this Definitive Agreement, we Colombians have lived through more than seven decades of violence, half a century of open war, thirty-three years in peace processes, five years of debates in Havana, the disenchantment of the October 2 Plebiscite and the most historic effort to achieve the majority consensus of the nation.

In this last stage we enriched and modified the previous Agreement, taking into account the concerns and proposals, clarifications and specific definitions made by the most varied groups and social organizations, opinion sectors as well as political parties and movements. We studied with care and attention everything put to the consideration of the parties at the Negotiation Table by the various groups, and we introduced important and numerous changes and substantial modifications to the old texts, until turning the Final Agreement into the Definitive Final Agreement.

The Havana Table was once again surrounded by the support of the international community, deeply concerned that the peace efforts in Colombia could safely reach the port. The voices of encouragement from the United Nations, the European Union, the United States Government, the Vatican, the CELAC and the accompanying countries Venezuela and Chile, would join the permanent presence of Cuba and Norway, guarantor countries of the process, who night and day have been watching over the successful culmination of the work of the delegations. To all of them our eternal recognition.

Colombian women's organizations are the creators of this Definitive Agreement: they manifested themselves in many ways to make known the true meaning of their aspirations. The same can be said of the LGTBI movement. We met in Havana with delegations from various Christian faiths, social movements and different political parties. Several personalities of Colombian politics were also present to contribute their stitches in the common desire to weave the wisest formulas.

Our feeling of solidarity and admiration for the thousands of compatriots who took to the streets and squares of cities and towns, to express their disapproval of the war, their support for the foundations of the Final Agreement, and to require the parties sitting at the Negotiation Table not to stop until signing a Definitive Agreement. Our feeling of solidarity goes to the young and university students who succeeded in awakening a genuine national mobilization in defense of the political solution, and who promoted and conquered a Youth Pact for Peace, between the majority of the political representations of the different parties and movements, including the Conservative Party and the Democratic Center.

To the indigenous, peasant and Afro-descendant communities, the agrarian and communal leaders with a long history in the work for peace in the territories, the tens of thousands of families that joined the FARC in the vigils for peace, personalities of the Catholic Church, science and the world of art, academics from different universities, platforms for peace that sprang up in the cities of the country, who joined the marches of silence, of flowers, the victims of the Patriotic Union, who founded peace camps and stayed in them, to those who called for peace acts in different cities around the world. This Final Agreement belongs to them because they helped to build it with their hopes and actions.

The people of this country are tired of violence, intolerance, stigmatization and criminalization. It wants and demands a profound change in political customs, to cease corruption, lies, deception. The first national demand is to put an end to the use of weapons in politics, to guarantee the right to dissent, to oppose, to protest against mismanagement, against unjust laws, against arbitrariness and abuse of officials in power. Let’s life, personal integrity, freedoms of movement and thought become real. That is why Colombia closes rows around this Definitive Agreement.

Because it involved deep debates with all the voices of the Establishment, involved members of the armed forces, tightened positions to the most extreme points, required singular efforts of approximation. Nobody should stay out of it. This Agreement doesn’t mean to lay down ideological, political or conscientious positions, we only put a definitive end to the war. To confront contradictions in a civil manner.

That is why we demand its prompt and effective implementation, in order to unleash the building of democratic coexistence, peace and social justice in our country. No more assassinations of union leaders, agrarian or popular, land claimants, social activists, left-wing political opponents. No more threats or hostilities. It is unheard of that at this point FARC guerrillas continue to die with strange arguments, that the allegations for human rights violations are daily bread, that from everywhere there are complaints of communities for the plans of military occupation, for eradication operations Force of their crops despite the agreement. The violent eviction of the peace camp from the Plaza de Bolívar, the indolence of the national government before the murders of peasant leaders and activists of the Patriotic March, are astonishing to the country. While congratulating the National Army for hitting the ELN, there is no solidarity with the families of the FARC guerrilla and popular activists.

We hope to take an active part, in full legality, in the upcoming debates and just policies. We emphasize the importance for the country to form a transitional government, whose fundamental purpose would be the full implementation of the Havana Agreements, and which should be composed of all the forces and sectors that have worked relentessly for them.

We extend our greetings to Donald Trump for his election as the new President of the United States and we hope that his government can play a prominent role for the benefit of world and continental peace. We hope that the superior purpose of peace in Colombia, which will contribute decisively to the understanding throughout Latin America and the Caribbean, will continue to count on the support and acquiescence of the new government of Washington.

We reiterate our solidarity with all the victims of this long war, regardless of the side they belonged to, as well as our request for forgiveness for the consequences that may have come from our hands. To our political adversaries our respect, our olive branch, our fraternal invitation to live in the difference. There will be no more violence among Colombians for political reasons, that fact alone should fill us with the spirit to work to make our country a much better country. We believe that for the good of the country, the word is the only weapon that we Colombians will allow ourselves to use.

Bogota, 24 November 2016

Source: FARC-EP / RedGlobe

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