Santos Demands “Fair Play” from FARC

By Dialogo
June 25, 2013

During a march for the victims of Colombia’s armed conflict on June 23, Colombian President Juan Manuel Santos demanded that the Revolutionary Armed Forces of Colombia (FARC) acknowledged their victims and provided “fair play” during the peace talks in Havana.

“We have told the FARC: they have to acknowledge the victims in this negotiation,” Santos said in his closure speech during the march “Las víctimas le caminan a la paz” (Victims Walking for Peace), which was arranged by the government and civil associations in the country’s north.

From the village of Montes de María, in Bolívar department, Santos asked that the FARC go for “fair play” during the peace talks they held with the government in Cuba.

“Be true to your word; negotiate the reestablished points. Go for fair play; do not request impossible things,” Santos said to the FARC.

On June 21, the Colombian president had already asked the FARC to adjust the negotiating agenda in Havana and had discarded the possibility of summoning a constitutional assembly, as requested by the insurgent group on several occasions.

Since November, both parties have been holding talks to put an end to the armed conflict that has been going on for almost 50 years, and which has so far gained consensus with the first of five pouints in the agenda: the agrarian issue. Currently, the second point, the political participation of guerrillas, is being discussed.

Victims’ reparations are one of the five points that will also be discussed in the peace talks.

Hundreds of peasants affected by the conflict were present during the march, in which Santos stated that “the victims will have to contribute” because “some sacrifice will have to be made” for the truth.