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Colombia Government, FARC rebels sign revised Peace Agreement

Colombian Government has signed revised peace agreement with the country’s largest rebel movement, Revolutionary Armed Forces of Colombia (FARC).

The revised document was signed between President Juan Manual Santos and FARC leader Rodrigo Londono in Bogota, capital city of Colombia.

This is the second attempt undertaken by Colombian Government to end Latin America’s longest-running conflict (civil war) which has killed 220000 people. The previous deal singed September 2016 was rejected narrowly by the Colombian people in a popular vote held in October 2016.

The revised agreement will be submitted to Colombian Congress for approval, rather than put to a popular vote. It would not form a part of the Colombia’s constitution.

Key Facts

  • Within 90 days of approval of  revised agreement, FARC rebels will lay down their arms. Within five months they are required to completely surrender all weapons to the UN.
  • Under the new deal, rebels will have to declare their assets. The money will be used for reparation payments to victims of the conflict.
  •  However, the new agreement has not ban rebels from holding public office or includes jail terms.

Colombian President Juan Manuel Santos was awarded the Nobel Peace Prize in October 2016 for his efforts to end the war.

Background

The civil war in Colombia is one of the longest civil wars in modern times and the sole remaining armed conflict in the South America. The five decade long civil war has cost the lives of at least 220 000 Colombians and internally displaced close to six million people. It was started in the 1960s as a rural uprising for land rights by FARC as communist-inspired guerrilla movement inspired by Cuban Revolution. The main aim of FARC was to reduce the gulf dividing rich and poor and land reform for equality in the Andean country. The conflict has drawn in various leftist rebel groups, drug gangs and right-wing paramilitaries over the decades. However in recent times, the FARC had shifted from their original ideology and were active in illegal drug trade, kidnapping and extortion activities.

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2016 Nobel Peace Prize awarded to Colombian President Juan Manuel Santos

The 2016 Nobel Peace Prize has been awarded to Colombian President Juan Manuel Santos. He was selected for the prestigious award by the Norwegian Nobel Committee for his resolute efforts to bring the more than 50-year-long civil war of Colombia to an end.

He is second Colombian to win Nobel Prize after writer Gabriel Gracia Marquez who had won the literature Prize in 1982.

Santos is also second Latin American to receive Nobel Peace Prize after Guatemala’s Rigoberta Menchu had won it in 1992.

Peace Agreement

Manuel Santos had initiated the negotiations with the guerrilla (rebel) group Revolutionary Armed Forces of Colombia (FARC). These negotiations had culminated into a peace agreement between the Colombian government and the FARC guerrillas. However in October 2016, the peace deal was rejected by a narrow majority by the Colombians when it was put to referendum.

About Juan Manuel Santos

  • Born on 10 August 1951 in Bogota, capital city of Colombia.
  • He was elected Colombian President for first time in 2010 and was re-elected in 2014.
  • Earlier he had served as defence minister from 2006 until 2009

Background

  • The civil war in Colombia is one of the longest civil wars in modern times and the sole remaining armed conflict in the South America.
  • The five decade long civil war has cost the lives of at least 220 000 Colombians and displaced close to six million people.
  • It was started in the 1960s as a rural uprising for land rights by FARC as communist-inspired guerrilla movement.
  • The main aim of FARC was to reduce the gulf dividing rich and poor and land reform for equality in the Andean country.
  • The conflict has drawn in various leftist rebel groups, drug gangs and right-wing paramilitaries over the decades.
  • However in recent times, the FARC had shifted from their original ideology and were active in illegal drug trade, kidnapping and extortion activities.

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