In Buenaventura, the UN Security Council listened to the voices of ethnic authorities, youth leadership and victims of the armed conflict in the colombian pacific
Buenaventura, 10 February 2024. On the final day of their agenda in the visit to Colombia, the spotlight was on the voice of those deeply affected by the conflict and who yearn to decisively boost their role in peacebuilding.
Accompanied by the Vice-President of Colombia, Francia Márquez, the Minister of Foreign Affairs in charge, Luis Gilberto Murillo, and the Special Representative of the UN Secretary-General in Colombia, Carlos Ruiz Massieu, the United Nations Security Council were briefed in Buenaventura, Valle del Cauca, about the progress and challenges of the Ethnic Chapter’s implementation of the Peace Agreement.
During the first meeting, representatives of Afro-Colombian and indigenous organizations from the departments of Chocó, Cauca, Valle, and Nariño presented the main challenges faced by ethnic communities in the process of the comprehensive implementation of the Peace Agreement. They stressed that peace involves curbing the violence that affects them, healing the wounds left by the conflict, and closing inequality gaps. Strengthening the Ethnic Chapter of the Peace Agreement is a clear opportunity for this.
Subsequently, a session was convened with young people from Buenaventura and Quibdó engaged in promoting peacebuilding initiatives. They presented proposals to achieve their full inclusion in the implementation of the Peace Agreement, the necessary measures to reduce the risks they face and their desire to have a significant representation for the exercise of their transformative role in the territories.
To conclude the visit to the Colombian Pacific, representatives of organizations of victims of enforced disappearance and gender-based violence in the framework of the armed conflict emphasized the crucial need for commitment from all Colombian society to the victims as a main factor for the materialization of peace efforts in Colombia.
“Buenaventura is at the centre of peacebuilding efforts in Colombia. It is key to implementing the Agreement, especially the chapters on security guarantees, the ethnic chapter and transitional justice. The Government is also making efforts to achieve urban peace. From the Verification Mission, we will continue facilitating all these peace efforts,“ concluded Carlos Ruiz Massieu, Special Representative of the Secretary-General of the United Nations in Colombia, also highlighting the joint work we do with ethnic authorities, representatives of victims, people in the process of reintegration and young people.