Home > News > Cese al fuego y reinicio de los diálogos entre Gobierno y Eln.

Ceasefire and the resumption of negotiations between the government and the ELN.

Brussels, 15 February 2018

The OIDHACO network of 36 European organisations, and the other international organisations who are signatories of this press release, would like to express our concern about the violent events which have taken place since 9 January 2018, the date which marked the end of the bilateral ceasefire between the National Liberation Army (Ejército de Liberación Nacional - ELN) and the Colombian government.

We request that the parties adopt urgent measures to de-escalate the conflict and avoid military action that puts the civilian population at risk. We also request that they resume the peace dialogue and declare a new national bilateral ceasefire to stabilise the peace negotiation process.

It is essential to remember that during the one hundred day ceasefire   between 1 October 2017 and 9 January 2018, conflict-related violence between the Government and the ELN was drastically reduced. However, since the end of the ceasefire, the humanitarian risk for the civilian population has increased considerably in several areas of the country.

During this time there have been dozens of violent incidents and forced displacements. Added to this situation is the high rate of assassinations of social and community leaders and human rights defenders. In the first month of 2018 alone, at least 23 social leaders have been killed, according to data from Colombian NGO Indepaz.

For all these reasons and in view of the current situation of high vulnerability for a significant proportion of Colombian society, we urge the parties to:

  • Urgently agree a new national ceasefire.

  • Return to the negotiating table and take up the peace dialogues once more, according to the agreed agenda, giving priority to defining the way in which civil society will take part in the process.

  • Accept and take into account the proposals delivered by civil society organisations to the negotiating table.

  • We urge the Colombian Government to participate proactively in the dialogue and demonstrate its commitment to the peace processes by complying with the agreements with the FARC-EP and by making concrete progress in the protection of social leaders and human rights defenders.

  • We urge the ELN to stop all military action including kidnappings, assassinations, confinement, planting of landmines and forced recruitment of minors. We call upon the ELN to commit to working effectively on the de-escalation of the conflict and on a constructive dialogue for peace.

  • We call upon the international community, and particularly the European Union and its member states, to express their support and accompaniment for the peace process between the Colombian Government and the ELN.



For further information, contact Miguel Choza Fernández, Oidhaco Coordinator, , tel.+32 2 5361913

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