Statement by Permanent Representative Vassily Nebenzia at the UN Security Council Meeting on Colombia
Alongside with other Security Council members, we express our appreciation to the Secretariat and all those involved in the organization and convening of this meeting. We thank Head of the UN Verification Mission in Colombia Carlos Ruiz Massieu for his presentation of the Secretary-General’s report on the operation of the Mission, implementation of the obligations under the Final Peace Agreement, and the situation in the country that, just like others, could not escape the coronavirus pandemic.
We welcome traditional participation in this meeting of Foreign Minister of Colombia Ms. Claudia Blum. We also listened carefully to the interesting assessments presented by Ms. Clemencia Carabalí.
We expect that as the epidemiological situation in Colombia improves, Colombians will be catching up in all areas, where progress either stumbled or slowed down during the fight against COVID-19.
As UNSG report rightly mentions, the country needs immediate progress on all tracks – from agricultural reforms via political and socio-economic reintegration of former combatants, to ensuring their safety and security.
Peace process in Colombia should not pause. It is very important to revitalize dialogue between various political forces in order to facilitate mutual understanding on key issues of country’s further development and reforms.
We welcome the proclaimed commitment of Colombia’s leadership to the obligations stipulated in the Final Peace Agreement. We fully share the Secretary-General’s call to observe them. UNSG and Security Council recognize the Agreement in the form in which it was signed 3.5 years ago as the basis for settlement. It is this Agreement that created prospects for broad international support of the Colombian peace process. We hope all political forces of the country will demonstrate the required national ownership and focus on the implementation of the Agreement.
We regret that the authorities of the country left unanswered unilateral ceasefire initiatives proposed in line with the Secretary-General’s calls. We would like to remind that sustainable peace is not possible unless all key stakeholders, including the National Liberation Army (ELN), get involved in the process.
We call upon Bogota to promptly engage in a constructive dialogue with Havana and Oslo to settle the issue of the status of negotiators who are on the island at the moment. Thereby it is imperative that “guarantee protocols” be observed. I remind that Cuba receives these people on its territory in fulfillment of its international mediator obligations.
In conclusion, I would like to repeat that here in the Council we have many times called Colombia the showcase of effective international support. Today it needs to stand up to this trust by becoming the showcase of national ownership.
As a P5 member, Russia is ready to continue its support for Colombian peace process given commitment of its Government to the full-fledged implementation of the Final Peace Agreement.
We expect that the UN Verification Mission in Colombia will retain its significant role in ensuring reintegration of former members of armed groups in peaceful life and political activity.