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Title: Building citizens : demobilisation, disarmament and reintegration (DDR) process in Colombia, 2002-2010
Author: Carranza Franco, Francy
ISNI:       0000 0004 6061 0679
Awarding Body: SOAS University of London
Current Institution: SOAS, University of London
Date of Award: 2016
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In the literature on Demobilisation, Disarmament and Reintegration (DDR), security problems in post-conflict settings are too readily attributed to the personality traits or economic ambitions of the ex-combatants. Alternatively, this thesis analyses the challenges and dilemmas they have to face as part of the reintegration process. Drawing on the DDR process that took place in Colombia under Alvaro Uribe's government (2002-2010), this research questions how the Colombian Agency for Reintegration (ACR) contributed to the economic, social and political reintegration of former guerrilla and paramilitary members. The thesis is divided into two parts: the first aims to understand how the Colombian DDR originated and evolved. The third chapter illustrates how the initial DDR design responded to a national security strategy that established differential treatment towards the guerrillas and paramilitaries, yet neglected the long-term reintegration of rank-and-file ex-combatants and the need for assistance to the receiving communities. Moreover, the entire DDR policy was fiercely contested and adjusted by the country?s judicial institutions, which pushed the ex-combatants into both legal and institutional uncertainty. The fourth chapter highlights the extent to which responsibility for the reintegration was assumed by the municipal authorities of Medellín and Bogotá, which in turn encouraged and underpinned the creation of a DDR programme beyond its initially narrow, security-centric goals. The second part of this thesis explores the personal experiences of ex-combatants across three key dimensions: although the ACR programme seems to have had little success in terms of economic reintegration, social reintegration emerges as a more important organising element thanks to the creation of social fabric between the families, the communities and the overarching ACR bureaucracy. In particular, a positive experience with the reintegration officers had a ameliorative effect on political reintegration: by facilitating access to the mechanisms of democracy, new forms of interacting with the state were opened up to the ex-combatants, which would ultimately contribute to their forging of a new identity as citizens.
Supervisor: Not available Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral