France’s embassy in Colombia on Wednesday denied a claim by newspaper El Espectador the European country will host peace talks between the Colombian government and rebel group FARC currently held in Cuba.
According to the embassy’s spokesman, the news report “lacks basis.”
Embassy spokesman Romain Nadal reiterated that Paris’ “full support for the peace process launched by the government of Colombia and the FARC in 2012 in order to solve the oldest conflict in Latin America.”
According to Nadal, the French government is “convinced that only a negotiated solution can construct the basis of a lasting peace in Colombia.”
El Espectador reported earlier this week that sources close to the talks could leave Cuba and move to France in order to appease the United States, which formally supports the peace talks, but has objected to the fact these talks are held in Cuba, a country on the US blacklist since communists took over the government in Havana in the 1960s.
Cuba has been host of the talks since they began in late 2012.
The FARC, Colombia’s oldest-living and largest rebel group, has been talking with the administration of President Juan Manuel Santos to seek an negotiated end to the conflict that has cost 220,000 lives since political violence erupted in the 1940s.
So far, the two negotiation teams have found agreement on the FARC’s political participation, drug trafficking and a far-stretching rural reform. Currently on leave, the negotiators are expected to continue talking about victims in the coming days.