Colombian government and ELN relaunch peace dialogue

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Caracas (EFE).- The guerrillas of National Liberation Army (ELN) and the Colombian government relaunched the peace dialogue on Monday in Caracas, where representatives of the two delegations are meeting, in the presence of international observers, to resume this process suspended since 2018.

On behalf of the Colombian executive, the negotiating team is led by Otty Patiño, a former guerrilla close to President Gustavo Petro, while Israel Ramírez, alias “Pablo Beltrán”, leads the ELN delegation in this process which includes Venezuela as a guarantor country.

(id) Danilo Rueda, Otty Patiño and Iván Cepeda participate today in the peace dialogue between the Colombian government and the ELN, at the Humboldt Hotel, located in the Waraira Repano National Park (Ávila), in Caracas (Venezuela) . EFE/Rayner Pena R.

In a joint statement, the parties agreed to “resume with full political and ethical will the process of political dialogue”, understood as a claim “for rural and urban territories that suffer from violence and exclusion”.

Likewise, they promised to “build peace on the basis of democracy with justice, with tangible, urgent and necessary changes” that result from the negotiating table.

A new culture of peace

All this, continues the statement read by a host in front of the journalists, “to give the greatest possible and effective participation” to society, “to give priority to sectors that have historically been marginalized and abandoned for a dignified present and future, of full rights and authentic democracy”.

In addition, the Government and the ELN consider that “the construction of peace, as a State policy, transcends temporality”, which is why they will favor “permanent and verifiable commitments which sow the certainty of a new culture of peace, based on real changes that overcome political violence and its causes”.

(id) Aureliano Carbonell, Pablo Beltrán and Carlos Martínez participate today in the peace dialogue between the Colombian government and the ELN, at the Humboldt Hotel, located in the Waraira Repano National Park (Ávila), in Caracas (Venezuela) . EFE/Rayner Pena R.

The parties thanked Venezuela, which also sent its greetings as host country, as well as Norway and Cuba, also guarantor countries, which read another declaration in which they ratify their support for the process.

Likewise, they assured that they will assume “the values ​​that are fundamental and imperative in today’s world”, including “respect for all forms of life and their dignity”.

“We are aware of the need to respond to the different dimensions of collective life, which our duties to take care of the planet entail”, adds the joint press release.

Venezuela “will spare no effort” to support dialogue

The government of Venezuela assures that it will spare no effort in its support for the peace dialogue between the Colombian executive and the guerrillas of the National Liberation Army (ELN).

“Venezuela, as the host country of the first round of negotiations, will spare no effort to accompany this transcendental moment of the reconciliation process in our dear Colombia, with a clear awareness that this is the path for Latin America and the Caribbean to consolidate itself as an area of ​​peace and prosperity,” reads an official statement.

The government of Nicolás Maduro, whose message was read during the act of installation of the negotiations, held in the Venezuelan capital, welcomes “with new hopes” the resumption of these talks frozen in 2018 by decision of the then Colombian president. ivan duke.

(id) Pablo Beltran, Carlos Martínez and Otty Patiño participate today in the peace dialogue between the Colombian government and the ELN, at the Humboldt Hotel, located in the Waraira Repano National Park (Ávila), in Caracas (Venezuela) . EFE/Rayner Pena R.

“The Venezuelan people (…) express their unreserved support and support for all initiatives and actions that lead to the long-awaited total peace in Colombia,” the letter continues.

The so-called Bolivarian Revolution also hosted the Cuban and Norwegian delegations that participate as guarantors in these dialogues, which had a first attempt at reactivation on October 4, also in Caracas.

The guarantor countries hope

The countries guarantors of the peace talks between the Colombian government and the guerrillas of the National Liberation Army (ELN) have expressed their hope that the negotiations will succeed.

This was declared by Cuba, Norway and Venezuela, which form the group of guarantors of the negotiations, in a brief joint statement with the Colombian Catholic Church and the United Nations, the latter two being invited.

The guarantors are participating today in the peace dialogue between the Colombian government and the ELN, at the Humboldt Hotel, located in the Waraira Repano National Park (Ávila), in Caracas (Venezuela). EFE/Rayner Pena R.

“We appreciate the trust placed in us. We look forward to the process unfolding today. Without a doubt, this is an important step towards achieving peace in Colombia,” they said in the statement.

Cuba and Norway have already acted as guarantors in the peace negotiations between the Colombian government and the FARC guerrillas, which resulted in the 2016 agreement, in which Venezuela, together with Chile, played the role of accompanying country.

Maduro says ‘the time for peace has come’

The President of Venezuela, Nicolás Maduro, said this Monday, after the installation of the dialogue table in Caracas between the Colombian government and the guerrillas of the National Liberation Army (ELN), that “the hour of peace has arrived”.

“The time for peace has arrived, and here is the hand (…) of the Venezuelan people to tell (Colombian President Gustavo) Petro and Colombia (to) count on us for total peace,” he said. he declared in an act. with national and international students, broadcast by the state channel VTV.

In this sense, the Head of State offered “all the support of the Venezuelan people to the peace negotiations”, which, according to him, represent a “message of hope” for Latin America and the Caribbean to be a ” land of peace”. “.

UN celebrates resumption of peace dialogue

The Special Representative of the Secretary-General of the UN In Colombia, Carlos Ruiz Massieu celebrated the resumption of peace negotiations between the country’s government and the National Liberation Army (ELN) guerrillas.

“I celebrate the restart of negotiations between the government and the ELN in Caracas,” Ruiz Massieu said on social media, where he also reiterated “the support of the (United Nations) Secretary General, Antonio Guterres, for this process. “.

Ruiz Massieu also appealed “to the parties and to Colombian society to take advantage of this historic opportunity and deepen peace in Colombia” in a message in which he also attached photographs of the act, in which he was present, which officially resumes the negotiations in Caracas.

Peace negotiations with the ELN began in 2017 in Quito and were moved months later to Havana, under then-President Juan Manuel Santos’ government, but were suspended in 2018 by his successor, Iván Duque, and resumed by decision of the current president. ., Gustavo Petro.

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