The host nations of Colombia’s peace talks, Cuba, Norway, Chile and Venezuela on Thursday proposed a meeting in order to reach a peace agreement by the “end of the year.”
The guarantor and accompanying nations to Colombia’s peace process suggested a meeting between foreign ministers during the UN General Assembly in October, in order to accelerate the arrival of a peace agreement between the Colombian government and the FARC guerrilla group.
The peace talks that are held in Havana, Cuba began in November 2012. The negotiations currently appear to be reaching their final stages in which the complicated topic of transitional justice is being discussed.
“We hope that they can reach an agreement before the end of the year. This is why we have spoken about the possibility of a meeting between us foreign ministers of the guarantor and accompanying countries, to see how we can cooperate with the efforts that both sides are conducting,” said Chile’s Minister of Foreign Relations, Heraldo Muñoz.
According to the minister, the meeting was suggested on Thursday at an official meeting held at the Cuban Foreign Ministry, in which strengthening the bilateral ties between the FARC and the government were discussed.
Although it is “just an idea” at the moment, Muñoz assured that it has the support of Chile, Norway and Cuba who have been guarantors to the peace process since talks began in 2012.
“As it is, we have spoken about the idea and both foreign minister Rodriguez and myself consider that it will be positive,” said Muñoz.
The peace process began as an attempt by the FARC and the government to end Colombia’s armed conflict, which began in 1964 and has killed more than 260,000 people and displace over 6 million.
Since the talks began, negotiators have arrived at agreements on land reform, ending the FARC’s role in the illegal drug trade and political participation for former rebels.
However, negotiations on how to provide justice for the more than 7 million conflict victims caused the talks to stall as neither party was willing to take full responsibility for the victimization.
As progress in the talks was held back, violence between the FARC and the military escalated, forcing foreign host and sponsor countries to intervene.
Since then, the negotiators agreed to allow an international commission to negotiate the thorny subject of transitional justice, while top military and rebels commanders negotiated the demobilization, disarmament and reintegration of fighters.
The main negotiating teams have been discussing details of the previously agreed points and victim compensation.