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Colombia's FARC rebels to launch as political party on September 1

26 Juillet 2017

Colombia's Marxist FARC rebel group will officially launch its new political party on September 1, part of a peace deal with the government under which former guerrilla fighters will serve in congress.

On Nov. 24, 2016, President Juan Manuel Santos and FARC Commander Rodrigo Londoño Echeverri, better known as “Timochenko, ” signed a revised peace agreement that ended Colombias 52-year-old internal armed conflict.

The country's only remaining rebel group, the smaller ELN, is now following the path set by the FARC to negotiate a peace deal aiming to disarm and demobilize.

This transformation of the most ancient rebellion of the Americas is a major step in the return to the civil life of the revolutionary armed Forces of Colombia (Farc).

The leaders of the former terrorist organization used their press conference to clarify once again that they will not renegotiate any part of the accords with the Colombian government, and called on Colombia's congress to respect the agreements.

The government of Mr Santos leads in addition since February in Quito, Ecuador, in peace talks with the national liberation Army (ELN, guévariste), the last rebel group still active in Colombia.

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The FARC, looking ahead to next years general elections, must select candidates for office and candidates for the five seats in the Senate and five in the lower house of Congress awarded to the group under the 2016 peace agreements.

Political analyst Victor de Currea said the process was making "very solid" progress and that both sides were hoping to declare a bilateral truce during the pope's visit.

Marxist guerilla group formed in may 1964, an uprising peasant, the Farc are in their ranks of fighters for the most original, rural and agrarian reform is their main demand. The new training will be "antipatriarcale" and "anti-imperialist" and focused on the issues of gender, youth, the topics of agricultural, urban, and economic, she added. Each veteran must also decide whether it participates in the political party under its name of war, or of its true identity.

Latin America's longest-running conflict caused at least 250,000 deaths, left 60,000 people missing and displaced more than 7 million.

According to a survey in May by the Gallup polling firm, 82 percent of Colombians have a negative opinion of the FARC. Some 3,000 members of that party were killed.

The group has not yet announced which of its members will fill the congressional seats or the new party's name, but will hold meetings before the launch to fine-tune its policy proposals, Lozada said. "They are going to seek alliances", he predicted.

Colombia's FARC rebels to launch as political party on September 1