Colombia’s government has chosen four high-ranking military officers to negotiate a bilateral ceasefire with the country’s largest rebel group, the FARC, at the peace talks in Havana, Cuba.
A sub-committee of personnel from Colombia’s National Army, Navy, Air Force, and Police will travel to Havana to discuss a bilateral ceasefire with the FARC in a progressive effort to end the five decades-long armed conflict.
Although their identities are yet to be known, Colombia’s President Juan Manuel Santos said in an interview with newspaper El Tiempo that the officers would be of the highest rank.
“We do not know who will go to Havana. Names were mentioned, but there has not been a call or a list that links to anyone,” said one army general.
President Santos announced the government’s decision to install the special sub-committee of military personnel in his inaugural speech on August 7.
“It was agreed that in two weeks the sub-committee will address issues of a bilateral and definitive ceasefire, hostilities, and the surrender of weapons, which are part of the last substantive item [on the agenda],” said Santos.
This special sub-committee will establish a timeline for an eventual disarmament and definitive ceasefire, through the analysis and review of similar national and international conflicts that ended positively, according to a joint communique on the FARC’s website.
Peace talks between the FARC and the Colombian government have been ongoing since November 2012. So far, both parties have come to agreements on the topics of agrarian land reform, political participation, and illicit drugs. They are currently discussing reparations for the victims of the armed conflict, with demobilization and an overall peace deal to be discussed in the future.