HomeNewsBriefFARC Calls for Implementation of Drug Agreement
BRIEF

FARC Calls for Implementation of Drug Agreement

COLOMBIA / 9 JUL 2015 BY JAMES BARGENT EN

Both the FARC guerrillas and Colombian coca farmers have called for the implementation of agreements for tackling coca cultivation, but doing so while the conflict continues to rage will prove difficult. 

Earlier this week, negotiators from the Revolutionary Armed Forces of Colombia (FARC) released a statement calling for the government to implement keys aspects of a preliminary agreement on the drug trade.

The FARC and the government reached this agreement during peace talks last year, which included the FARC's commitment to sever ties to the illicit drug trade. The accord also outlined an approach for dealing with Colombia's illicit coca trade: a mix of voluntary eradication programs and more investment in the rural areas where coca is grown. 

In their statement, the FARC argue that there are no legal obstacles to implementing these plans starting now. Initiating an alternative approach to drug policy is particularly urgent, given recent reports that coca cultivation is on the rise in Colombia, the statement adds.  

Coca farmers echoed the guerrillas' remarks during a recent summit held in the southern department of Putumayo, reported La Silla Vacia. Leaders at the summit also called for the implementation of new crop substitution and eradication programs, even though Colombia's peace talks have not yet concluded.

The coca farmers also called for additional measures not discussed during the peace talks, including a gradual eradication program that would allow farmers to keep producing coca as they switch to new crops. 

Colombia's peace talks are currently in a rough patch, rocked by rising violence and falling popular support. However, on July 8, the guerrillas declared the start of a new unilateral ceasefire in the hope of putting negotiations back on track.

InSight Crime Analysis

The FARC and the coca farmers are correct in saying there are few legal impediments to initiating the new coca programs, which, strictly speaking, aren't even that "new." The proposals are more like improved versions of projects already launched around the country, rather than a radically different approach to drug policy. 

SEE ALSO: The FARC, Peace and Possible Criminalization

However, while it may be possible to launch small pilot schemes, a full-scale implementation of the drug agreement would prove difficult under current conditions. Coca cultivation takes place in some of the most war-torn parts of the country. Without an indefinite bilateral ceasefire in place, the volatile security conditions could endanger the projects.

Meanwhile, the FARC units that continue to fund themselves by taxing and trading coca will likely prove reluctant to see their revenues dwindle, without having any guarantees in place for their demobilization.

share icon icon icon

Was this content helpful?

We want to sustain Latin America’s largest organized crime database, but in order to do so, we need resources.

DONATE

What are your thoughts? Click here to send InSight Crime your comments.

We encourage readers to copy and distribute our work for non-commercial purposes, with attribution to InSight Crime in the byline and links to the original at both the top and bottom of the article. Check the Creative Commons website for more details of how to share our work, and please send us an email if you use an article.

Was this content helpful?

We want to sustain Latin America’s largest organized crime database, but in order to do so, we need resources.

DONATE

Related Content

COLOMBIA / 3 OCT 2022

Colombian rebels had long been welcome in Venezuela but now, they have arrived in force, bringing conflict with them.

COLOMBIA / 16 AUG 2022

The ELN and Urabeños are once again battling for control of Bolívar, a northern department of Colombia.

COCA / 22 DEC 2020

President-elect Joe Biden wants to reset US-Latin American relations, but the Trump administration’s approach may leave scars.

About InSight Crime

WORK WITH US

Open Position: Full Stack WordPress Developer

28 NOV 2022

As Full Stack WordPress Developer You Will: Work collaboratively with other developers and designers to maintain and improve organizational standards.Demonstrate a high level of attention to detail, and implement best…

THE ORGANIZATION

Join Us This #GivingTuesday in Exposing Organized Crime

24 NOV 2022

For over twelve years, InSight Crime has contributed to the global dialogue on organized crime and corruption. Our work has provided policymakers, analysts, academics, journalists, and the general public with…

THE ORGANIZATION

Like Crime, Our Coverage Knows No Borders

18 NOV 2022

The nature of global organized crime means that while InSight Crime focuses on Latin America, we also follow criminal dynamics worldwide. InSight Crime investigator Alessandro Ford covers the connections between Latin American and European…

THE ORGANIZATION

Using Data to Expose Crime

11 NOV 2022

Co-director Jeremy McDermott made a virtual presentation at a conference hosted by the United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime (UNODC). The ‘Sixth International Conference on Governance, Crime, and Justice…

THE ORGANIZATION

InSight Crime ON AIR

4 NOV 2022

InSight Crime Co-director Steven Dudley was interviewed for the podcast The Rosenberg Case: A Tale of Murder, Corruption, and Conspiracy in Guatemala, which explores the potential involvement of then president, Álvaro Colom,…