Colombia's Changing Approach to Drug Policy [March 10, 2017]   [open pdf - 1MB]

"Colombia is one of the largest producers of cocaine globally, and it also produces heroin bound for the United States. Counter-narcotics policy has long been a key component of the U.S.- Colombian relationship, which some analysts have described as "driven by drugs." Now, Colombia is changing its approach to counter-narcotics policy, which may have implications for the U.S.-Colombian relationship. […] A peace accord between the government of Colombia and the country's main leftist insurgent group, the Revolutionary Armed Forces of Colombia (FARC), was signed in late November 2016 after four years of formal peace talks. The Colombian Congress unanimously ratified the peace accord, which had been revised following the narrow rejection of an earlier accord in a national referendum in October 2016. The final peace agreement addresses important issues, such as illicit crop cultivation-a major source of FARC income-and rural development. According to President Juan Manuel Santos, the peace accord will draw former FARC members into efforts to counter illicit drug production and trafficking. In 2017, as Colombia begins to implement the final peace accord and demobilize the FARC, the country is facing a large increase in cocaine production. During the protracted peace negotiations with the FARC, the Colombian government altered its approach to drug policy. A major change was the decision to end aerial spraying to eradicate coca crops, which had been a central-albeit controversial-feature of U.S.-Colombian counter-drug cooperation for more than two decades."

Report Number:
CRS Report for Congress, R44779
Public Domain
Retrieved From:
Federation of American Scientists: http://www.fas.org/sgp/crs/index.html
Media Type:
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