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COLOMBIAN BISHOPS ASK REBELS TO EXTEND TRUCE
BOGOTA (CWNews.com) - Archbishop Alberto Giraldo Jaramillo, president of the Colombian Bishops' Conference, has asked both the government and Marxist rebels to extend up to January 10 the truce that both parts agreed to last month, which provided Colombians with a peaceful Christmas and New Year.
"This truce has been a very good experience, because it has shown that it is possible to create a better environment for negotiations," said Archbishop Giraldo. "We strongly believe that this context, and not one of violence, is the most adequate to start negotiations."
Both the government and the rebels have agreed to resume peace negotiations on January 10. "The effort on both sides to avoid conflict and to keep this context of peace would send a mutual, powerful message of the willingness to reach an agreement," he said. "Peace, in fact, is made up of these apparently small but concrete gestures."
The proposal was immediately supported by Archbishop Isaias Duarte Cancino of Cali, another key Church figure in the conflict. "The truce has been respected by both sides and has shown Colombians that it is possible for us to live in peace," he said.
"Let us keep this environment! Let us all remember that we can choose between peace and violence, between life and death, between a future and the lack of it," Archbishop Duarte concluded.
January 5, 2000 |
volume 10, no. 3
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