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Phases in the current peace process

Phases in the current peace process

In 2012, facing a weakened guerrilla, President Juan Manuel Santos started a new peace process with the FARC, which has now stalled following the 2 October plebiscite. Negotiations ended successfully in Havana (Cuba), on 23 August 2016, with the conclusion of a final peace agreement and a ceasefire from 29 August 2016. The peace-building phase would have start soon thereafter, had the Colombian people given their consent to the accord in a popular referendum.
Despite the failure of previous negotiations, the social, historical and political context in Colombia seems to favour a lasting solution this time. Colombian society is tired of violence; a new generation has grown up with the conflict, influenced by the new communication technologies and is less ideologically polarised than their predecessors; and the economic situation has also improved greatly. The new political context was also reflected in the Congress of the Republic, allowing President Santos to create the National Unity Roundtable alliance, which ensured him a wide majority for this project, although weakened after his 2014 re-election. Experts consider that the main reasons for the current peace process are: political, to open a political space to those who claim not to have it; humanitarian, to end the bloodshed; and practical, it is deemed more efficient and less onerous to end the conflict through negotiation than to continue the fight.

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