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UN will work with Colombian Government and FARC-EP on extended weapons hand-in deadline

The United Nations Mission in Colombia has said that it will comply with new deadlines agreed between the Government and the Revolutionary Armed Forces of Colombia (FARC-EP) for a weapon hand-in, now set for June 20.

After signing a hard-won peace deal, both parties embarked on a path to peace 180 days ago, and have been working together successfully enabling the FARC-EP to lay down their individual weapons, for which the initial date was set for May 30. Due to delays in the different phases of implementation of the agreement the term has now been extended.

In a statement released yesterday, the UN Mission indicated that it has been working intensely in the logistic deployment of 44 containers in 26 identified war zones. In these containers, it will receive and hold over 7,000 FARC-EP identified weapons, for which the Mission has deployed 450 international observers and 72 civilian officers. These weapons include munition, mines and explosives.

The containers, including the weapons handed over by the FARC-EP, will then be transported to eight reception and storage centres. Based on the newly agreed timetable, the extraction of weapons from war zones will be achieved by 1 September.

On a recent visit to Colombia, a delegation from the UN Security Council witnessed first-hand the implementation of the peace agreement, observed the progress as well as the challenges to the agreement that ended the 50-year old conflict. The delegation met with President Juan Manuel Santos and toured the Amazon region of Colombia where one of the monitoring mechanism facilities is set up under a historic peace agreement.