Report of the Secretary-General on children and armed conflict in Colombia (September 2011-June 2016) (S/2016/837)
Distr.: General 4 October 2016 Original: English
The present report was prepared pursuant to Security Council resolution 1612 (2005) and subsequent resolutions. It is the third report of the Secretary-General to the Security Council on children and armed conflict in Colombia and covers the period from September 2011 to June 2016. The report provides information on the six grave violations against children, the parties to conflict responsible for such violations are identified and progress made with regard to the protection of children affected by armed conflict is described.
The reporting period was marked by the start of a historic peace process between the Government of Colombia and the Fuerzas Armadas Revolucionarias de Colombia — Ejército del Pueblo (FARC-EP) in 2012, which contributed to a decline in the conflict intensity and an overall decrease in the number of violations against children, in particular towards the end of the reporting period. Most notably, the Government and FARC-EP signed an agreement in May 2016, setting out the way forward for the separation of children under 15 as a first step, and for a special programme for the restoration of rights, reintegration and reparation for all separated children under 18. In addition, in March 2016, the Government and a second armed group, the Ejército de Liberación Nacional (ELN), took another important step by announcing an agreement to begin peace talks. While these landmark events reinforced the hope of ending conflict, activities carried out by post-demobilization armed groups continued to compromise the protection of children.
Throughout the reporting period, efforts were made by the Government of Colombia to strengthen the framework for ending, preventing and responding to violations against children. It is highlighted in the report that there is a need to prioritize the implementation of commitments, as well as existing laws and policies, in order to translate them into concrete positive outcomes for all children across the country. In this regard, the report contains a series of recommendations addressed to all parties to better protect children and reinforce guarantees of non-repetition in the post-conflict phase.