Colombia: The Government, the UN and the international community launch new fund for stabilization and post-conflict peacebuilding

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After years of conflict the fund will support actions to improve the conditions of conflict affected areas in Colombia. © Photo: UNDP

Bogota - The Government of Colombia, the United Nations and members of the international community launched today a new Multi-Donor Trust Fund of the United Nations for Post-Conflict, a new initiative to support national stabilization and confidence building efforts as well as early implementation of the peace agreement.

The new fund will be managed by a tripartite steering committee, co-chaired by the Government and the United Nations, with the participation of international donors, the private sector and the Colombian civil society. It will especially support conflict-affected areas in the lead-up to and aftermath of possible peace agreements with the Revolutionary Armed Forces of Colombia-People’s Army (FARC-EP).

“Achieving stable and lasting peace depends on the urgent actions we take to bring peace dividends to the most conflict-affected regions,” said Post Conflict Minister Counsellor Rafael Pardo, announcing the new fund with UN Resident and Humanitarian Coordinator in Colombia Fabrizio Hochschild and international community representatives.

“Colombia’s priorities prevail and the United Nations and donors will bring strategic partnership and technical expertise, operational capacity and relations with local authorities and communities in many parts of the country. We invite cooperation partners to join this new Fund, " Minister Counsellor Pardo added.

For the first time, this UN Fund will be implemented by Colombian authorities at the national and local levels, civil society organizations, the private sector and UN agencies under a single strategy.

The Government and the United Nations thanked initial financial commitments from the Governments of Norway and Sweden and the Peacebuilding Fund of the United Nations, with the new fund kicking off today with an initial US$8 million in contributions.

Funds will initially target projects meeting the priorities set out in the Rapid Response Strategy for Post-Conflict, which seeks to generate tangible peace dividends to boost public confidence in the peace process and generate appropriate conditions to implement the peace accords.

Some priority projects include the implementation of collective reparation programmes; demining, signage and education in mine-affected and at-risk municipalities; improvements in social and economic infrastructure, local employment generation opportunities; food security; strengthening of the police and other support to agencies that address gender violence.

The Fund will also support initiatives that will improve access to justice, strengthen local government capacities, manage social conflicts and promote education for peace, focusing on the most conflict-affected areas while promoting community participation.

"The Fund is another tangible demonstration of the UN’s commitment to accompany the efforts led by Colombia to sow peace after years of conflict,” said UN Resident Coordinator Fabrizio Hochschild.

“We hope for a significant response from donors to ensure that the generated support is transformed into actions with tangible impact to improve the conditions of conflict-affected communities, in line with the priorities set by Colombia."

The Presidential Agency for International Cooperation (APC-Colombia), the Directorate for Post-Conflict, and the United Nations worked in record time during December 2015 and January 2016 to structure the Fund. The APC-Colombia led the strategy and will be part of the Fund’s Steering Committee. The Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Colombia will also participate in the Fund’s governance and the dissemination of plans and post-conflict peacebuilding in the country.

For more information

In Bogota: Pontus Ohrstedt,
In New York: Eva Saenz, (Multi-Donor Trust Fund)