French President visits FARC demobilization camp

World Today

On Tuesday, the President of France, Francois Hollande, finished his Latin America tour with a visit to a demobilization camp, Revolutionary Armed Forces of Colombia People’s Army (FARC).

CGNT’s Michelle Begue reports.

French President in Colombia to discuss peace accord with head of state

French President in Colombia to discuss peace accord with head of state

On Tuesday, the President of France, Francois Hollande, finished his Latin America tour with a visit to a demobilization camp, Revolutionary Armed Forces of Colombia People’s Army (FARC). CGNT’s Michelle Begue reports.

Hollande met with leaders of the Colombia’s largest rebel group, the FARC, in one of around two-dozen camps helping the rebels’ transition back civilian life.

Hollande toured a demobilization camp in western Colombia. He offered French help in removing land mines and in searching for people who went missing in Colombia’s long war.

Around 5,700 members of the FARC will be disarming as part of a peace agreement signed at the end of 2016. United Nations observers will be supervising the demobilization.

FARC commander Pablo Catatumbo stressed the importance of France’s support in the coming challenges.

The comments came after Colombia’s ombudsman’s office warned of attacks against social leaders. Reports of a resurgence of right winged paramilitaries in recent months had worried officials and efforts to end 5 decades of violence.

But while some were worried of the rise in new criminal groups, victims of the FARC rebels continued to press for their rights.

During President Hollande’s visit he also met with family members of the men and women who have disappeared during the armed conflict.

Colombia’s 50-year armed conflict had displaced more people than total populations of Nicaragua, or El Salvador. An estimated 220,000 people died and more than 60,000 disappeared.