President Santos takes important steps towards bilateral ceasefire

News from Colombia | on: Thursday, 15 January 2015

In what is another enormous step towards what would be a truly historic moment on the path towards peace in Colombia, President Santos has told his negotiators to initiate discussions towards the agreement of a bilateral ceasefire. Since the peace talks officially began in November 2012, the FARC have carried out several unilateral ceasefires but the government has so far refused to engage in discussions regarding a bilateral ceasefire. On 20th December 2014, the FARC announced an indefinite ceasefire and called once more on the government to respond. As part of this latest announcement, president Santos recognised that the FARC had kept their word.

A bilateral ceasefire is seen by much of the Colombian peace movement as an essential ingredient to both accelerate the move towards peace whilst at the same time bolstering support for the peace process amongst the population by showing concrete results. Indeed Justice for Colombia’s Peace Campaign has been calling for a bilateral ceasefire since the start of the negotiations. In May 2014 Justice for Colombia coordinated a letter signed by 245 politicians from the United States, the United Kingdom and Ireland, in support of the peace process and calling for a ceasefire.

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