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Government, ELN rebels to enter fourth round of peace talks in Quito

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Government, ELN rebels to enter fourth round of peace talks in Quito

The fourth round of negotiations between Colombia’s government and ELN rebels
The fourth round of negotiations between Colombia’s government and ELN rebels
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The Colombian government will commence a fourth round of peace negotiations today with the Ejercito de Liberacion Nacional guerrilla group.

Last month, the ELN struck a three-month ceasefire with the government which included commitments to cease extortion, recruitment minors and infrastructure sabotage. For its part, the government pledged to improve jail conditions and protection for left-wing activists.

Both parties will today discuss what mechanisms will be used to consult with Colombia’s society more generally. Popular approval is crucial to a successful deal and is politically invaluable. Last year’s FARC peace deal was rejected in a referendum that provided fodder for the opposition, which is seeking to mobilise votes ahead of next year’s presidential election.

But societal participation is the first step of a complicated six-point agenda in peace negotiations.  As such, expect discussions to progress slowly.

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