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Colombia - the dialogue is the only way to achieve the peace and stability, dr. Laima Andrikienė, MEP

22/09/2005: Colombia - the dialogue is the only way to achieve the peace and stability, dr. Laima Andrikienė, MEP

On the initiative of the Lithuanian MEP Laima Andrikienė the EPP-ED Group in the European Parliament hosted the study day on Colombia: Peace Processes and their Legal Framework. The discussion had focused on the human rights problems and peace process, its legislative background in the Colombian society. The delegation lead by the Vice-President of Colombia Fransisco Santos attended the debates.

"Colombia, where the terror and violence of the military groups is lasting already for four decades, is the main producer and exporter of drugs in the world. The organised criminal groups and drug cartels make the big influence for the state economy and politics", said one of the organisers of the conference Laima Andrikienė.

The participants of the conference have underlined the problems as the expanding plantations of cocaine; and the fact of 500 tones of cocaine are being produced every year, which despite all the efforts of the Colombian government and the international community still exist. The incomes from the drug trade are the source of power of the military groups. The presidents of Colombia Andres Pastrana and Alvaro Uribe several times have appealed the European Union for the aid to fight the drug business.

"The fight against the violence, kidnapping of people, other abuse of the human rights might succeed only if we first eliminate the drugs mafia. Colombia needs our support as well as our efforts to fight the drugs in Europe", underlined L.Andrikienė.

Observers believe that it is practically impossible to win the war by military means without engaging in dialogue, due to Colombia's geographical characteristic and the weakness of its army. The peace and stability can be achieved only by dialogue; therefore the new law on peace and reconciliation was adopted in Colombia in July this year and is in the process of implementation.

"In the peace process the dialogue and the demobilisation of the paramilitary groups are very important. It must be consolidated. We want democratic society, sharing democratic values and with no violence in Colombia"- said the Vice-President of Colombia Fransisco Santos.

"Peace is better than war. The government which seeks the peace and stability deserves our support. This conference in the European Parliament would have to boost the new and more efficient initiatives of the European Union in achieving the stability and peace in Colombia", stressed the Lithuanian MEP.

Further information:

Živilė Didžgalvienė, EPP-ED Press Service, GSM: + 32 475 75 1627