Friday, 23 October 2020

The Long Road To Peace in Colombia

 Protesters in Cartagena calling for a No vote in the referendum, which will be held on Sunday Credit: Reuters
Protesters in Cartagena calling for a No vote in the referendum, which will be held on Sunday Credit: Reuters

The longest-running war in the Western Hemisphere officially came to an end on Monday, with the signing of a peace deal between Colombia’s government and the leftist Farc rebels.

Juan Manuel Santos, president of Colombia, signed the deal with the Farc leader known as Timochenko, who announced: “The war is over. We are all going to build the peace.”

In brief

May 1964: First confrontation between Farc and government troops

- paying the bills -

Late 1970s: Farc begins trafficking cocaine to pay for its activities

1980s: First peace talks get underway but soon collapse. Farc forms a political wing, and paramilitaries join forces with the government to try combat Farc and its political wing

1999: Farc’s membership and kidnapping peak at 18,000 and 3,000 respectively

2000: United States and Colombia initiate Plan Colombia, a US$9 billion US military aid program meant to help the Colombian government combat the drug trade, reassert authority and increase its capacity throughout the country

2002 :Presidential candidate Ingrid Betancourt, a French-Colombian, is kidnapped and held for a further six years

- paying the bills -

June 2015: Farc’s last attack: bombing the Tansandio oil pipeline, causing 10,000 barrels of oil to contaminate waterways in what the government says is the worst environmental disaster in Colombia’s history

2016: Talks which originally began back in 2012 result in a deal. It includes previously agreed-on provisions on land reform, combatting drug trafficking, guerrillas’ political participation and punishment for war crimes on both sides

June 2016: Negotiators announce a blueprint for how Farc fighters will lay down their weapons once the peace accord is implemented

August 2016: A ceasefire between the Farc and the government comes into effect. Colombians vote in a referendum in October to endorse or reject the peace agreemen

Rico
Rico
"Rico" is the crazy mind behind the Q media websites, a series of onlinemagazines that includes TodayColombia.com. Rico brings his special kind of savvy to online marketing. His websites are engaging, provocative, informative and sometimes off the wall, where you either like or you leave it. The same goes for him, like him or leave him.There is no middle ground. No compromises, only a passion to present reality as he sees it!

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