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Find here the latest news reports from the peace process, straight from Havana, Cuba. Permanently updated. 
Tuesday, 23 May 2017 00:00

"With social mobilizations and political pacts we'll a solution for Peace"

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After the decision taken by the Constitutional Court in which the Congress of the Republic can now modify the peace agreement signed between the Colombian Government and the FARC, various political sectors have reacted to the news.

Iván Cepeda, Senator for the “Polo Democrático” political party [center-left], the significance of this situation should be highlighted, but we should not forget that "this is not the first critical moment in the process", making reference to the fact that there have been other critical moments that the process was able to surpass.

Out of context? Also read: Peace in Colombia receives troubling blow, implementation at risk

He assured that without false optimism we [the political sectors that range from right to left that support the peace agreement and its compliance] must proceed to find a solution. "We will have to think about how to weave political pacts [among diverse political and social sectors] that guarantee a stability to incorporate [peace agreement related] laws. We have to make a great imaginative effort so that through social mobilization and with political forces we find a way to solve this problem that has been created by the new composition of the Constitutional Court.”

According to Cepeda, it is important to remember that there is currently a majority of sectors in the country that are closely linked to all "the adversaries of the peace process", which according to the Senator, creates complex problems in terms of being able to guarantee legal and physical security to the members of the FARC that have expressed their will to make a laying down of weapons.

"The Court has just created a situation in which a process that was already difficult in itself with the Fast Track becomes even more complex, and a new strategy will have to be defined. This puts the guerrillas in a position in which they have to take into account the established schedule [for the implementation of Peace, including the laying down of weapons process] and how their own strategies in the midst of the peace process are going to be" said Cepeda.

Also read: Declaration of the FARC-EP regarding the ruling of the Constitutional Court

The “Slow Track” that begins in Congress

Alirio Uribe [not to be confused with former president, current senator and peace detractor Alvaro Uribe], House Representatives in Congress for the “Polo Democrático” political party, was respectful of the Court’s decision, but said that it complicated the situation because Congress could further delay the processing of the law projects and allow "the enemies of Peace" to introduce their own agenda into these law projects.

"I believe that the implementation of the Agreements is a struggle that is going to last for about 10 years or so and that Congress will now become a much stronger scenario for the citizen pressure that must be done in order to implement the Agreements . Now we must surround Congress, in the good sense of the word, so that Congress does not stray away from the objectives of peace" said Alirio Uribe.

There are still core laws that need to be completely processed in Congress before passing on to further laws: The Statutory Law for the Special Peace Jurisdiction, which would give life to this legal system to bring truth, justice, reparation and non-repeteition guarantees to the victims of the conflict; and also the laws regarding the Comprehensive Rural Reform, the Substitution of Illicit Crops and the Political Reform.

The idea was for these laws to correspond directly to the mandate, spirit and agreed in the Peace Agreement, but with this variation –through the Constitutional Court’s ruling on the Fast Track legislative procedure- has opened the door to severe modifications that leave the contemplated in the Peace Agreement in high levels of uncertainty.

Another problem is that the Constitutional Court can begin to sink or demolish what Congress does. "All these problems have to be faced by the political forces and the government who is the main responsible for the compliance of the agreements" Says Cepeda.

The dream of Peace must continue

According to congressmen Iván Cepeda and Alirio Uribe, it is necessary to make a call to citizens, social organizations and young people to mobilize, just like it was done after October 2 when the No-vote won the Plebiscite, to protect the peace process and ensure the implementation of agreements.

"I believe that in no way does this decision mean that the dream of the Colombian extreme right wing becomes a reality, the peace process has advanced, it has reserves and I believe that it is the moment in which we must find solutions to the problems of the implementation of the Agreement" concluded Senator Cepeda.

Source: Contagio Radio