US Will Continue Support Peace in Colombia Despite Colombian People Reject Deal On Referendum

Time: 8:36 p.m. CEST

The White House would remain committed to the peace process that Colombian government and the FARC rebel group reached at the end of June, but the people of Colombia voted against it at the national referendum held on Sunday. The White House press secretary Josh Earnest said that the U.S. would continue to support Colombian people and Colombian government through peace initiative. “The democracy can be a messy,” Earnest commented on October 3 news briefing for the White House correspondents.

Straight-up majority did not voted ‘yes’ on the question for the support of the final accord to end the conflict and to construct a stable and lasting peace.

Regardless the promises from the White House about the possible economic cooperations, a lot will depends of the further developments after the people voted in a referendum to reject the peace deal, which defined several steps, including that the FARC rebels will hand over their weapons to the United Nations. That could not happen after the rejection of the peace deal.

What could happen next?

The National Public Radio emphasizes that President Juan Manual Santos could maintain a bilateral cease-fire, which is effective for several months. As the NPR comments, “The challenge now will be whether Santos and the FARC can revive the peace agreement after it’s been rejected by the people.” Colombian President Santos said he would not give up and he would continue to search for peace until the last moment of his mandate. The FARC guerrillas said, “They want to keep pursuing peace.” As the Associated Press published, “a United Nations spokesman said, the U.N. remains “fully committed to the peace process in Colombia.”

And U.S. State Department spokesperson John Kirby said the U.S. supports President Santos’ proposal for unity of effort in support of a broad dialogue as the next step towards achieving a just and lasting peace.”

The NPR says another pivotal player who could revive the deal is Alvaro Uribe, a former president who said on Sunday, the deal needed “corrections.”

CNN commented that, “likened to the fallout from the United Kingdom’s “Brexit” referendum, the vote’s unexpected failure has left the Colombian political classes reeling and unsure how to respond in order to save four years of hard negotiation with the Marxist militia.”
In the 52-year conflict, which displaced as many as five million people, about 220.000 died. FARC, which intends to form a left-wing party, had committed many crimes that were not easy to forgive.
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