FARC, Colombia agree on land reform

Colombian government negotiator Humberto de la Calle greets the FARC delegation in Havana on May 26, 2013.

The Revolutionary Armed Forces of Colombia (FARC) and the government of Colombia have come to an agreement over land reform.

The two sides published a joint statement in the Cuban capital of Havana on Sunday, saying they reached a deal, which calls for economic and social development of rural areas.

“This agreement will be the start of a radical transformation of rural Colombia,” the statement read.

“Today we have a real opportunity to attain peace through dialogue,™™ said Colombian government negotiator Humberto de la Calle at a press conference, adding, “To support this process is to believe in Colombia.”

Havana negotiations, which kicked off in November 2012, focused almost entirely on land reform, which is on top of the five items in the agenda.

Colombian President Juan Manuel Santos welcomed the agreement on Twitter after it was announced.

“We celebrate, really, this fundamental step in Havana… to end half a century of conflict… We will continue the (peace) process with care and responsibility,” the Colombian president stated.

At the end of the last round of talks on March 21, both sides claimed progress had been made toward an agreement to end half a century of insurgency in the South American nation.

FARC is Latin America’s oldest insurgent group and has been fighting the government since 1964.

Bogota estimates that 600,000 people have been killed, and some three million others have been internally displaced by the fighting.

The rebel organization is thought to have around 8,000 fighters operating across a large swathe of the eastern jungles of the Andean nation.


This article originally appeared on: Press TV