The S&D Group welcomes Colombian peace talks

Today Socialists and Democrats in the European Parliament welcomed the start of the peace talks in Norway between the Colombian government and the Revolutionary Armed Forces of Colombia (FARC).

S&D president Hannes Swoboda said:
„For half a century, Colombia has been torn apart by violence. Countless people have died, many have been kidnapped and millions displaced. Today a window of hope has been opened.
„We welcome the Colombian government’s offer to invite the FARC to participate in political life as soon as it abandons its weapons. We call on the FARC to stop any violence, such as the terrorist attack conducted only this Monday, and to put an end to so much suffering.
„Generosity will be required on both sides, as well as the active participation of Colombian civil society in the process, as a way to heal the wounds and lay the foundations for lasting peace.
„The Colombian people can count on our solidarity and support. In Europe, we will follow their progress closely in their historic quest, starting in mid November in Cuba when they will address the first of the six negotiating points: rural development.
„We hope that National Liberation Army (ELN) will join the talks along the way, as any agreement without this armed group would be incomplete.“