jueves, 25 de agosto de 2016

Colombia and communist rebels announce "final" deal to end 50 years of fighting

Colombian media and the public hailed the announcement on 24 August that the government and envoys of the Revolutionary Armed Forces of Colombia (FARC) had ended their talks in Havana and agreed on an accord to end some 50 years of civil war in Colombia. Negotiators announced on 24 August that an agreement had been reached on six principal points after almost four years of talks, namely: on a comprehensive rural development policy, the peacetime political role of the FARC, the mechanics of ending fighting, curbing illegal drug production, compensation for victims and verification of peace and its approval with a referendum, Bogotá's Radio Santa Fe reported. Peace between the two sides was to be signed formally in early September, while President Juan Manuel Santos Calderón cited 2 October as the date of a national vote allowing Colombians to approve or reject it, Spain's RTVE reported. Colombians, he stated, would have the "last word" on the agreement. He thanked the countries that had accompanied the talks - Norway, Venezuela, Chile and the host Cuba - and the European Union for its support. Venezuela's President Nicolás Maduro congratulated Colombians and reiterated his country's "full support for building peace." The head of the Organization of American States, Luis Almagro, also congratulated both sides for the "historic step." In Bogotá, people, from local residents to students and politicians, began celebrating the imminent accord late on 23 August. People gathered swiftly in the "hippies park" in the middle-class district of Chapinero, soon after networking websites reported the conclusion of talks that evening, El Espectador reported.