Colombian officials and FARC dissidents hold meeting for peace talks
(Reuters) – Colombian government officials have met with members of an armed group drawn from demobilized FARC rebels to explore possible peace talks, the two sides said in a statement.
Signed by a representative of the United Nations, the Norwegian government as international observers and a representative of a group of so-called FARC dissidents, the statement showed the members’ willingness to hold a bilateral ceasefire.
He added that the two parties agreed to sign a confidential protocol to guarantee a meeting of dissident FARC commanders.
“Both parties express the will and the need for these dialogues to be fixed by a bilateral ceasefire, the execution of which must be verified,” the statement said.
Colombian President Gustavo Petro, who took office in August, has vowed to seek “total peace” by fully implementing a 2016 peace deal with the Revolutionary Armed Forces of Colombia (FARC) and talking to the so- saying dissidents who also reject the deal. as criminal gangs.
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Several commanders of the two main splinter groups have been killed in recent months, including across the border in Venezuela.
(Reporting by Carolina Pulice and Julia Symmes; editing by Grant McCool and Diane Craft)
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