Some days ago Lord Des Browne triggered a brief debate on Colombia in the House of Lords. The Colombian government’s talks with the ELN guerrillas were discussed in the chamber. The Minister of State for Overseas Territories of the UK, Lord Zac Goldsmith, said that “Colombia is a human rights priority for the UK”.
The ELN, or National Liberation Army, is Colombia’s last remaining leftist insurgency. Talks with the rebels are crucial to President Gustavo Petro’s ambition of achieving “Total Peace” with all armed criminal/paramilitary groups in the country.
The main department responsible for implementing “Total Peace is that of the Colombian High Commissioner for Peace, however it is concerning to see that this department lacks sufficient resources to carry out the work, to promote negotiations with a wide range of armed groups. International cooperation for peace in Colombia is essential at this juncture.
As Penholder for UN Security Council’s Mission of Verification in Colombia the UK has a special role to play in the Colombian Peace Process.
Lord Des Browne triggered a short debate on Colombia at the House of Lords. Watch the full debate below.