12. Spotlight: Challenges to Stabilizing Peace
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The final set of peace accords in Colombia, signed on November 24, 2016, present a comprehensive solution to addressing both the root causes and outcomes of more than a half-century of internal armed conflict. Arguably, they contain all of the technical, social, political, and economic mechanisms (or provisions for such mechanisms) required to build a durable, sustainable peace with a tailored approach to gender and ethnicity. Nonetheless, early implementation challenges have shown that the stabilization of peace will be an arduous and fraught process over the mid- to long-term. This Spotlight analyzes four critical factors that threaten peace stabilization efforts within Colombia: coca production, land formalization, political participation, organized armed groups (OAGs), and the politicization of elements of the peace accord (or its entirety) ahead of the 2018 presidential elections. The following document offers insight into 1) the interrelatedness of all of these domains both to one another and to the implementation of the accords, 2) the paradoxes that stymie advances in each of the domains, and 3) possible solutions to addressing some of the more persistent challenges.