Seven years after the historic peace agreement with the FARC in 2016, the Colombian government has achieved another breakthrough. During negotiations with the second guerrilla group ELN in the Venezuelan capital Caracas, both sides agreed on an agreement and the creation of so-called humanitarian zones.
In these zones, the protection and supply of the population as well as compliance with the ceasefire should be guaranteed. This emerges from a joint statement from the government and guerrilla delegations after another round of negotiations in Caracas. Accordingly, the communities living in the villages concerned should also be involved in the peace process and social development projects.
220,000 people died in the civil war
A civil war between left-wing rebels, right-wing paramilitaries and the military has been simmering in Colombia for around 60 years. Over 220,000 people died and millions were displaced within their own country.
After the peace agreement in 2016 between the government and FARC guerrillas, the security situation in the South American country initially improved. However, many fighters turned away from the peace process – the smaller guerrilla organization ELN with almost 6,000 members remained active.
Colombian President Gustavo Petro, who has been in office for a year, resumed peace talks with the guerrillas in November 2022. His predecessor Ivan Duque (2018-2022) ended talks with the rebels after an ELN guerrilla attack in 2019 in which around 20 police officers were killed in a training center.
nob/ap (efe, dpa, afp)