The president of the Colombian cattle rancher’s union (Fedegan) on Friday demanded an apology from the chief government negotiator in the FARC peace talks for criticizing the union for its refusal to participate in agricultural discussions.
“It doesn’t sound good when someone like De la Calle uses terms applicable to his counterpart, the FARC, who have behaved truculently against the Colombian society,” Lafaurie said in an early morning interview with a Colombian radio station.
Humberto de la Calle called the Fedegan out after the “truculent manipulation” displayed by the cattle union regarding the agricultural proposals under debate in Havana, Cuba. In a crucial moment of compromise, the Fedegan alone dragged its feet in coming to the table to meet with other leaders in the agricultural industry. Lafaurie defended the Fedegan’s obstinancy, claiming that the FARC had no real interest in the plight of the farmers and would instead use redistributed land for “demagoguery.”
According to Lafaurie, De la Calle owes an explanation to the cattle ranchers, “and also an apology, because this is not the type of language he should use with a sector like ours.”
Cattle ranching amounts to 3.5% of the Colombian GDP, according to the World Bank.