The former mayor of Bogota reportedly sent a letter in October to members of the government’s negotiating team and FARC delegates offering his help in an advisory role to “train and educate…FARC…once the conflict ends.”
The FARC’s foreign minister, alias “Jesus Santrich“, on Friday said that FARC welcomed Mr. Mockus’ proposal.
“I think we will have a way to respond to Dr. Mockus,” said Santrich. “We are able to speak with all sectors of Colombian society and we are pleased to reach this kind of initiative.”
However, the charismatic ex-mayor’s offer is contingent on the efficiency of peace talks between FARC and the government.
“If the agreement [is] achieved in nine months or less from the start of formal talks in Oslo on October 17 [i.e. before August 17, 2013] I offer to provide at least 1,000 hours of volunteer work to the FARC or the organization, policies, heirs of the FARC or, if they prefer and the government agrees, to tasks related to the implementation of the agreement,” stated the letter.
“In the event that you make the miracle of building peace in less than six months, [I will] double my offer [2,000 hours],” Mockus offered.
Likewise, if the negotiations lag, the offer changes accordingly. If an agreement takes more than nine months, but less than two years, Mockus said he will volunteer 240 hours. If an agreement takes longer than two years, the offer goes down to 50 hours.
The letter also invited “philanthropists of the world to explore the possibility” of exerting “friendly pressure” in search of peace. Mockus urged them to offer their “time, their equipment, and/or [their] economic resources.”
“I invite officials, scholars, experts, educators, entrepreneurs, to…offer cooperation [thus]…promoting a sense of urgency…This will serve two purposes expressed by you [both negotiating teams] in the Agreement: ‘Building peace is a matter of society as a whole that requires participation of all without distinction and…to ensure the effectiveness of the process and complete the work on the agenda…in the shortest possible time,” wrote Mockus.
“I want to help everyone not procrastinate…FARC and [the] government are powerful…true…but it is also true that there is a power that lies within us citizens, in our ability to offer or withdraw our cooperation. This is also a way to begin to heal [the] hatred and resentment caused by threats and attacks,” the letter concluded.
FARC and the Colombian government are in the midst of peace negotiations to bring an end to the guerrillas 48-year war against the State.