International Justice

CJ354 Endicott College

Attack Attributed to FARC Rebels in Colombia Threatens Peace Talks

Recent progress toward peace in Colombia has been stalled due to a recent attack in the country that the government has said is the fault of FARC rebels. If the attribution is true, this is the first FARC attack since a cease-fire negotiated in December. Peace talks initiated by the president in 2012 have made large strides in ending the fifty-one year conflict; in addition to the cease-fire, FARC agreed to stop recruiting soldiers under 17 years of age, work with the government to dig up land mines, and the government agreed to stop air bombing FARC camps. This recent attack threatens to destabilize the peace process and start the war anew. Further, it comes at a delicate time in the talks, when “Negotiators have been tackling some of the thorniest topics, including how the FARC will turn over its weapons and whether rebel fighters and members of government security forces will be punished for crimes and human rights violations committed during the war.”

Officials stressed the impact this would have on public opinion, an important component of transitional justice that contributes to the stability of the difficult process. Opponents of the peace talk will also use this as an opportunity to push their agenda, threatening to push public opinion toward “cracking down” on the rebels and restarting bombing of FARC camps. However, government officials are quoted as saying: “Nonetheless, the government has made a firm decision to keep the peace process going.” It will be interesting to see how the government responds.

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One response to “Attack Attributed to FARC Rebels in Colombia Threatens Peace Talks

  1. dwanger93 April 15, 2015 at 7:48 pm

    It has recently been announced that, as a result of the FARC attack (killing 10 Colombian soldiers), Columbia has rescinded the bombing truce that it had instituted with FARC in the past few months. Colombian president announced this decision today: “I have ordered the armed forces to lift the suspension of air strikes on FARC positions until further notice.” This attack has caused a massive blow to the peace talks that had been taking place for roughly the past three years. In addition to the 10 soldiers killed, there have been 17 others reported injured, 4 of which are known to be severe. FARC’s attack on Colombian troops is a turning point in this conflict, and hopefully the situation will not spiral out of control.

    Update:
    http://www.bbc.com/news/world-latin-america-32318890

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