Colombia’s former president Andres Pastrana, in power during the last failed peace talks with the FARC, said Wednesday new negotiations could be considered if certain conditions are met.
Responding to a FARC statement expressing interest in “a hypothetical negotiating table,” Pastrana said that if the rebels released their hostages and made a firm commitment to end kidnapping, their offer could be considered.
Referring to the failed 1999-2002 peace talks, which took place in the demilitarized zone of El Caguan, Pastrana said the agenda had contained political, social and economic elements. It could be taken up again, he added, but only once FARC made concrete gestures of peace.
If talks had been successful, many lives would have been saved, said the former leader.
Pastrana said it was hugely important that rebels considered political methods to achieve their goals, highlighting the case of Gustavo Petro, the former M-19 guerrilla who was elected as Bogota‘s mayor last year.