The President of Colombia, Juan Manuel Santos, has used his Nobel Peace Prize acceptance speech to name for the world to “rethink” the warfare on medication.
He mentioned the zero-tolerance coverage is perhaps “much more dangerous” than all the opposite wars being fought worldwide.
Mr Santos’ authorities and the nation’s greatest insurgent group, the Farc, signed a peace deal final month.
The battle it ends has killed greater than 260,000 individuals and left hundreds of thousands internally displaced.
Accepting the prize for his efforts within the peace course of, Mr Santos paid tribute to the households of victims of the battle.
He mentioned the “nice paradox” of peacemaking was that “the victims are those who’re most keen to forgive, to reconcile and to face the long run with a coronary heart freed from hate”, even whereas “many who haven’t suffered the battle in their very own flesh are reluctant to just accept peace”.
In a deviation from his ready remarks, he requested the representatives of the victims current to face and be recognised for their very own efforts within the peace course of, to a lot applause.
“I’ve served as a frontrunner in occasions of warfare – to defend the liberty and the rights of the Colombian individuals – and I’ve served as a frontrunner in occasions of creating peace,” he mentioned. “Enable me to inform you, from my very own expertise, that it’s a lot tougher to make peace than to wage warfare.”
Mr Santos mentioned it was “time to alter our technique” on medication, and that Colombia had “paid the very best price in deaths and sacrifices” within the so-called warfare on medication.
The time period, coined by US President Richard Nixon greater than 4 a long time in the past, refers to US-led efforts to cease drug manufacturing at its supply. In Latin America this has included on-the-ground policing, and fumigation of coca fields from the air.
“We’ve ethical authority to state that, after a long time of combating in opposition to drug trafficking, the world has nonetheless been unable to regulate this scourge that fuels violence and corruption all through our international group,” he mentioned.
“It is mindless to imprison a peasant who grows marijuana, when these days, for instance, its cultivation and use are authorized in eight states of the USA.
“The style wherein this warfare in opposition to medication is being waged is equally or maybe much more dangerous than all of the wars the world is combating in the present day, mixed.”
The Colombian authorities’s peace cope with the Farc was struck after a few years of negotiations.
It hit a shock hurdle in October this 12 months when 50.2% of voters rejected it in a referendum.
Simply 4 days after the sudden referendum consequence, it was introduced that Mr Santos would obtain the prize. In his speech, he mentioned the nomination was “equally stunning” and “got here as if it have been a present from heaven”.
Working alongside the no campaigners, the federal government wrote a brand new deal which was signed final month.
Berit Reiss-Andersen, a member of the award committee, mentioned the Nobel Peace Prize 2016 was “additionally meant as a tribute to the Colombian peace” who had “by no means given up hope of a simply peace”, and the negotiators and Farc guerrilla leaders additionally deserved “thanks and tribute”.
There have been many armed teams concerned in a long time of battle in Colombia, together with left-wing insurgent teams and right-wing paramilitaries. In October the government announced it would start peace talks with the second-largest insurgent group, the ELN.