The prominent peace organization “Colombians for Peace” urged the Colombian government and their guerrilla adversaries on Tuesday to implement a bilateral ceasefire amid the ongoing peace process.
In an open letter to Colombian President Juan Manuel Santos and senior leaders of guerrilla groups FARC and ELN, CCP wrote, “The reason for this open letter to the President of the Republic and the two senior commanders of the insurgents is to consider again the need for a ceasefire and hostilities and grant a special agreement based on humanitarian law.”
“Why don’t we anticipate and remove obstacles that may undermine the legitimacy of the peace talks?” Asked the organization, referring to the continuing hostilities between Colombia’s armed services and the country’s largest guerrilla group FARC.
CCP claimed the proposal “is not intended to hinder or torpedo any constructive agreement,” but rather to strengthen the process.
Though Cordoba was barred from holding office over her alleged ties to illegal armed groups, she has been lobbying heavily for a ceasefire ever since Santos formally announced peace talks were underway.
The president and his defense minister have previously dismissed any proposal that they decrease military pressure on the FARC while conducting the talks. “There will be no kind of ceasefire. We will have nothing until we have reached the final agreement,” Santos said on September 7.
The guerrillas remain open to the idea of a ceasefire. “We will propose a ceasefire as soon as the dialogue begins on October 8,” said FARC political representative, Mauricio Jaramillo, earlier this month. “We have come far enough in the process of confrontation with the State. We will propose a bilateral cease fire,” the rebel spokesman added.