After several weeks of dialogue, on November 12, 2016, representatives of the Colombian government and the Revolutionary Armed Forces of Colombia (FARC) announced a long list of changes to the initial version of the peace accord for the demobilization of the longest-standing insurgency in Latin America. With this new document, the parties sought to reach agreement on an alternative to the first version of the accord rejected by the majority of Colombian citizens who voted in the plebiscite held on October 2, 2016. It remains to be seen whether this new compromise will serve to widen the consensus surrounding the peace process and clear the route toward the dissolution of the insurgency or, rather, open the door to a new phase of political polarization and keep Colombia trapped on shaky ground created by the failure to keep the promise to end the armed conflict.
From overseas, the awarding of the Nobel Peace Prize to President Juan Manuel Santos was an important recognition of the government’s intent to find a way through the peace process after the defeat at the ballot. The executive branch initiated conversations with the political bloc headed by former President Álvaro Uribe that had opposed the initial agreement reached with the FARC. The result of this dialog was a list of close to five hundred proposals to modify the text which was discussed in Havana by the government representatives negotiating with the guerrillas. The new version of the peace accord is the result of these conversations.
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