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Montevideo, December 8th 2022 - 20:00 UTC

 

 

Colombian gov't, ELN resume peace talks in Caracas

Tuesday, November 22nd 2022 - 10:39 UTC
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The new talks are a “message of hope” for Maduro The new talks are a “message of hope” for Maduro

Venezuelan President Nicolás Maduro said that “time for peace has arrived” as dignitaries from the Colombian government and the National Liberation Army (ELN) guerrillas started their ceasefire talks in Caracas Monday.

“Here is the hand of the Venezuelan people to tell President Gustavo Petro and Colombia that they can count on us for total peace,” Maduro went on.

He also said in his broadcast message that the new discussions represented a “message of hope” that has “all the support of the Venezuelan people.”

Monday's meeting marked the resumption of negotiations interrupted in 2018 by then-President Iván Duque. In a joint statement, both parties agreed to “resume with full political and ethical will the process of political dialogue,” understood as a claim “of the rural and urban territories that suffer violence and exclusion.”

The negotiators also concurred on the need to “build peace based on a democracy with justice and with tangible, urgent and necessary changes that this table agrees.”

The statement also calls for “permanent and verifiable commitments that sow the certainty of a culture of peace”.

Both parties were also grateful for “the persistence, commitment, and presence” of the countries acting as guarantors of the talks: Cuba, Norway, and Venezuela.

After a meeting in Caracas on Oct. 4, representatives of Petro''s government and the ELN agreed to re-establish the process with rotating venues among the guarantor nations.

Petro, Colombia's first leftist president and a former guerrilla himself, reactivated contacts with the ELN after taking office on Aug. 7, to resume talks halted by Duque after an attack against a police school that left 22 dead.

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