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Strategic Diplomatic Relations

Dr. R. Evan Ellis and Roman D. Ortiz: Rejection of the “Peace” Accords with the FARC: What’s Next for Colombia?

Dr. R. Evan Ellis                                                                Roman D. Ortiz:

Dr. R. Evan Ellis                                                                                                  Roman D. Ortiz:

Oct. 4, 2016 — On October 2, by a very narrow margin, Colombians voted to reject the agreement that their government had negotiated with the Fuerzas Armadas Revolucionarias de Colombia (FARC) that would have formally ended that group’s 52-year long struggle to overthrow that nation’s government. The result came as a shock to many both within and outside Colombia, given that polls taken shortly before the referendum predicted the accord would pass by an almost two-to-one margin. [3] Indeed, in our confidence that the referendum would pass, had written and were waiting to go to press with a detailed article on the outlook for post-agreement Colombia.

Interpreting the results

The October 2 vote does not reflect Colombia’s rejection of peace, but rather, of an accord that many Colombians believed would bring neither peace nor justice. Colombians have long become accustomed to the breach between the erudite discourse of their leaders, and the realities of their daily lives. The rejected 297- page long accord was a good example of this contrast. Beyond the language used by the government to encourage acceptance of the agreement, a number of its provisions threatened to both worsen the security situation and exacerbate the difficulties of the Colombian economy.


(below: read the article, all the full text!)