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Cablegate: Mapp/Oas Highlights Progress/Challenges In

VZCZCXYZ0089
OO RUEHWEB

DE RUEHBO #2034/01 1552325
ZNR UUUUU ZZH
O 032325Z JUN 08
FM AMEMBASSY BOGOTA
TO RUEHC/SECSTATE WASHDC IMMEDIATE 3055
INFO RUEHCV/AMEMBASSY CARACAS PRIORITY 0502
RUEHLP/AMEMBASSY LA PAZ JUN 9470
RUEHPE/AMEMBASSY LIMA PRIORITY 6236
RUEHZP/AMEMBASSY PANAMA PRIORITY 1813
RUEHQT/AMEMBASSY QUITO PRIORITY 6906
RUEHGL/AMCONSUL GUAYAQUIL PRIORITY 4449
RUEAIIA/CIA WASHDC PRIORITY
RHMFISS/CDR USSOUTHCOM MIAMI FL PRIORITY

UNCLAS BOGOTA 002034

SIPDIS

FOR WHA/AND

E.O. 12958: N/A
TAGS: CO PHUM PGOV KJUS PREL
SUBJECT: MAPP/OAS HIGHLIGHTS PROGRESS/CHALLENGES IN
PARAMILITARY PEACE PROCESS

REF: BOGOTA 2013

Summary
-------

1. (SBU) The MAPP/OAS (OAS Mission in Support of the Peace
Process) eleventh draft report favorably evaluates the GOC
reintegration program for demobilized paramilitaries as well
as heightened GOC attention to victims, citing greater
psychosocial assistance to the former paramilitaries,
expansion of legal assistance to victims, and issuance of a
new decree on reparations. MAPP/OAS also identifies
challenges requiring increased GOC attention, including
resolving the uncertain judicial status of 19,000 demobilized
paramilitaries, creating additional employment opportunities
for the demobilized, obtaining better information on
paramilitary child recruitment, and increasing GOC efforts to
educate victims about their rights under the Justice and
Peace Law (JPL). End Summary

Eleventh MAPP/OAS Report Highlights Progress,
Provides Recommendations for Continued Success
--------------------------------------------- -

2. (SBU) The MAPP/OAS eleventh draft report (please protect
until public release) evaluates JPL implementation and
progress in recreating the "social fabric" of areas affected
by the paramilitaries. The report evaluates both the
reintegration process for the demobilized and victims' access
to truth, justice, and reparations. Overall, the report is
favorable, highlighting the progress made to date, including
increased GOC emphasis on victims rights and expanding access
to GOC services in rural areas.

3. (SBU) Still, MAPP/OAS notes challenges requiring ongoing
attention and reiterates that only sustained and expanded
services on the part of state institutions can ensure the
success of the JPL process. These include the need to
clarify the uncertain judicial status of 19,000 demobilized
paramilitaries, use the JPL process to obtain more data on
paramilitary child recruitment, create more employment
opportunities for the demobilized, and increase GOC efforts
to educate victims' about their rights. MAPP/OAS coverage of
emerging criminal groups is addressed in reftel.

Reintegration
-------------

4. (SBU) MAPP/OAS states the uncertain judicial status of
19,000 demobilized paramilitaries threatens the framework of
the JPL process. A July 11, 2007 Supreme Court decision
declared that former United Self-Defense Forces of Colombia
(AUC) members did not qualify for the benefits of Law 782,
thereby removing the legal basis for pardoning AUC rank and
file members for crimes other than serious human rights
violations. MAPP/OAS calls for immediate resolution of the
issue.

5. (SBU) MAPP/OAS recognizes the GOC's expansion of the
scope of services to the demobilized, including
individualized services, psychosocial treatment, and better
access to health and education. Still, the report warns that
many demobilized are dissatisfied with the lack of job
opportunities and are seeking increased assistance in finding
employment. MAPP/OAS considers the economic reintegration
situation "precarious," since most employed demobilized are
working in the informal sector.

Victims Assistance
------------------

6. (SBU) MAPP/OAS notes with satisfaction the high level of
victims' participation in the JPL process as well as the
GOC's expansion of victims' assistance services. 130,000
victims have joined the JPL process. The 277 voluntary
confessions heard to date have clarified crimes against 5,300
victims, including some for which there had been no previous
information. The human rights ombudsman represents 4,000
victims and has educated more than 15,500 victims on their
JPL rights since May 2006. The Fiscalia has held 131
education sessions, reaching over 20,000 participants.
MAPP/OAS also applauds the GOC's expansion of Centers for

Integrated Attention for Victims, which offer psychosocial
and judicial services to victims.

7. (SBU) Underscoring the abundance of information resulting
from voluntary confessions, MAPP/OAS notes the lack of
Fiscalia forensic staff available to investigate and verify
reports on paramilitary victims. For example, 146 remains
have been returned to their families as a result of
information collected in voluntary confession. Still, the
precise location of 3,588 mass graves and the remains of
1,452 victims still require verification. MAPP/OAS
recommends more personnel to handle the growing caseload.
The report praises the GOC's recent Reparations Decree, which
it says could mitigate economic injuries and set reasonable
expectations. MAPP/OAS suggests reparations should include
access to education and health services as well as cash
payments and land restitution.

Child Recruitment
-----------------

8. (SBU) MAPP/OAS hails the GOC's newly created
Intersectoral Commission for the Prevention of Recruitment
and Use of Children by Illegal Groups. The Commission will
focus on prevention and the development of public policy to
reduce risk factors. MAPP/OAS calls on the GOC to strengthen
this effort by actively seeking information on past child
recruitment through voluntary confessions.

Expanding Regional-Based Services
---------------------------------

9. (SBU) MAPP/OAS underscores the importance of departmental
and municipal engagement in the JPL process, highlighting the
successes of Antioquia, Santander, and the Medellin municipal
authorities. The report praises the inclusion of
reintegration strategies in departmental and municipal
developmental plans. MAPP/OAS commends the expanding scope
of national services, such as the National Commission on
Reparation and Reconciliation, which now has nine offices
throughout the country. Still, MAPP/OAS criticizes the
absence of a GOC national strategy to reach out to all
victims, particularly those in rural areas, and calls on the
GOC to do more in this regard.

Protection
----------

10. (SBU) MAPP/OAS commends the GOC's creation of a
protection program for victims. The GOC budgeted over $17
million pesos (about $10,000 USD) in late 2007 to the
Colombian National Police's victims' protection program. The
Ministry of Interior and Justice also provides protection
training to victims; these training programs both educate
citizens and enable the GOC to learn what type of services,
information, and protection victims may need.
BROWNFIELD

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