This report is based on data collected as part of original survey research conducted with individuals formerly associated with criminal groups – including FARC dissident groups – who were interviewed between April and September 2022.

This survey took place thanks to the cooperation agreement established between MEAC and the Reincorporation and Normalization Agency (ARN by its Spanish acronym) in Colombia; MEAC is grateful to the ARN for its collaboration in this work. The interviews took place in three cities in Colombia – Bogotá, Medellín, and Cali – where the ex-associates were participating in exit programming provided by the Colombian Government. The survey enquired about ex-associate conflict experiences and their transition out of their group and back into civilian life.

This report focuses on recidivism risks that may affect their transition to civilian life and the potential for them to return to an armed group or participate in other illegal activities. These findings may be useful to the Government, the UN, and NGO partners working to implement and support the differential assistance process, and may inform the design and implementation of similar interventions in Colombia in the future. The report ends with an examination of key policy and programmatic implications of these findings.

Spanish version is available here.

Citation: Cristal Downing, Kyle Johnson, Ángela Olaya and Sofía Rivas (2022) "Recidivism Risks in the Differential Assistance Process for People Exiting Criminal Groups in Colombia", United Nations University, New York.