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Agency for Reincorporation and Normalization (ARN) shares the progress,
achievements and challenges of the reintegration and reincorporation processes.
Photo: ARN Communications
Access to health, education, job training, psychosocial welfare, productive projects and land are some of the guarantees provided to those who build their lives from a legal perspective.
The national government delivers, by way of accountability, a balance of what has been, to date, the ongoing work that seeks to provide better conditions for hundreds of ex-combatants.
From different agencies, there are solid foundations for a medium- and long-term consolidation of reintegration and reincorporation, in order to build a Colombia in peace.
On the eve of the fourth anniversary of the implementation of the Peace with Legality policy, led by President Iván Duque, it is compelling to highlight how the reincorporation and reintegration processes are today a fundamental axis that has provided guarantees for 12,823 people in the process of reincorporation and 4,327 people in the process of reintegration, who once belonged to armed groups, and now stand out in a transition that, with deeds, are proof of commitment to achieve a country in peace.
The work of the different agencies and ministries of the national Government, together with international cooperation, but, above all, with the commitment of the ex-combatants, allows today to evidence important achievements that have even been highlighted abroad and in the verification reports that have allowed to corroborate the strategies that will continue to progress with a state willingness in search of harmony among the citizens.
The Agency for Reincorporation and Normalization has been present in all the territories of Colombia, where any person in the process of reintegration or reincorporation develops his or her life project in legality.
Because one opportunity changes everything, it has been a milestone in the country; today, not only those who were combatants contribute to peace in Colombia, but also those who were victims of violence, the communities mainly in rural areas, and those who, from the big cities, are witnesses of a social growth based on respect, attention and access to rights without distinction or condition.
19 years ago, the Agency for Reincorporation and Normalization, has been supporting and providing advice to those who make their transition to legality, after being members of various armed groups, seeking to create opportunities to strengthen their capacities and to enable them to fully develop themselves within the framework of the law.
On the one hand, the first great example process in the country: Reintegration, which links those who were not only members of Organized Armed Groups outside the Law (GAOML, "Grupos Armados Organizados al Margen de la Ley", from its name in Spanish), but also those who accessed the Justice and Peace system, today allows us to see how 4,357 people are active with access to new opportunities in education, productivity, psychosocial care and health care.
In addition, during the reintegration process, 1,029 projects have benefited 248 women and 745 men, while 5,164 were enrolled in the General Social Security Health System.
13,024 people were accredited by the Office of the High Commissioner for Peace as belonging to the then Farc-Ep in 2016. Ever since, the accompaniment work has been strenuous. During the current government, the Reincorporation Roadmap was created, enabling access to short-, medium- and long-term benefits, as a result of a true and deep commitment to build a Colombia in Peace.
The ARN has supported multiple actions that have allowed the consolidation of a transition to legality, while acknowledging that, today, a large majority of women and men persist with their responsibility: 12,843 people active in this process are proof of it. 91.7% of those who left the armed groups are making progress in their reincorporation.
Access to education, economic sustainability, habitability and housing, integral psychosocial wellbeing, health, community and family are the cornerstones of the Reincorporation Roadmap designed with precision for a dignified and co-responsible process, where the coordination of the different agencies of the national Government have contributed from investment, support, design and permanent management.
Andrés Felipe Stapper Segrera, who during the Government of President Iván Duque has overseen the actions carried out throughout the national territory, is the guarantor of a peace with facts and results, which together with a team of 1,800 collaborators, translate a path that must still be followed for the consolidation and stabilization of a significant number of ex-combatants who today tell, build and permeate a society with a speech directed towards dignity and legal life.
“Today that we have this opportunity, we have made of Peace not only a policy: it is a reality that is built day by day. Today, the policy of Peace with Legality is one of the transforming axes of our National Development Plan. When we said that we produced profound transformations, it was because we went from a short-term process that the Agreement itself had provided for in different economic and social benefits, such as health, productive and economic components, some of these processes of a temporary nature for 24 months; to seeing that we had an even bigger challenge such as what to do with the former territorial spaces, whose completion was in August 2019. Today, the results should not remain here, but should be the door that opens to continue building together", said Stapper.
The economic reincorporation, proposed in the policy of Peace with Legality, has allowed 7,823 people (8 out of 10 people) to have productive projects, of which 3,875 have been approved, both individually and collectively; a figure that translates into the support of the same number of families.
During these four years, we have gone beyond what was agreed. This was reflected in the speech of the United Nations Secretary General, Antonio Guterres, who, in November 2021, highlighted the progress in the implementation of the reincorporation process, from one of the former territorial spaces in Dabeiba, Antioquia. And this is precisely one of the points on which the national government remains committed to work: the consolidation of the AETCR (Former Territorial Spaces for Training and Reincorporation).
Despite not being part of the agreements, this Government decided to work hard and harmoniously between ministries and agencies to generate access to land and housing for reincorporation. Nearly 1,900 hectares of land have been formally allocated for the construction of housing and the implementation of productive projects, benefiting more than 2,600 reincorporated individuals and their families.
To reach the Mountain Range of Perijá, in the north of Colombia, to find tourism projects, or in the Montes de María to recognize cattle raising and agriculture, is a depiction of what can be seen on the other side of the geography, in Cauca, where ex-combatant indigenous communities have joined together to work in fish farming, avocado growing or pig farming, is a sign of a tireless joint work, but a true commitment to build dreams from legality.
4,431 people linked to job training programs or dozens of ceremonies wherein, with cap and gown, men and women recognize that education is a reason to move forward, are just part of the result of a strenuous policy with results. Or the access to health care for 99% of those who make their transition to legality along with their families, accessing coverage throughout the national territory.
Always, in a concerted manner, the determinations of the Government that seek the welfare of ex-combatants have been raised on the discussion with the FARC collective, and therefore, the contribution for the coming days is a message to continue building for a country in peace, where there is no distinction of conditions, race or thought. Therefore, the construction of a peaceful Colombia, we do it and we reiterate, by highlighting each progress that has been made in this process, wherein, jointly, with a good administration, coherent reception and daily contribution, we are able to leap forward for a better country.