Forwarded from Anthony (peace talks)

Louis Proyect lnp3 at SPAMpanix.com
Fri Feb 9 18:24:54 MST 2001


A few minutes ago, about 7:30 PM Bogotá time, President Andres Pastrana
issued a decree prolonging the demilitarized zone until October 9, 2001.

Earlier in the day Pastrana and Manuel Marulanda Velez, signed a 13 point
agreement which "unfroze" the peace talks between the FARC and the
government. I have not yet seen the text of the agreement, although it will
be printed in tommorrow's newspapers, and may already be available online.

The most important point according to radio and television news is the
establishment of a committee of nationally important people to study how to
fight paramilitarism. All of the other major points raised by both the fARc
and the government in their recent proposals are said to be included
somehow in the agreement.

Extensive television coverage here focused on Pastrana and Marulanda
huggin, shaking hands, and smiling at each other.

The accord will go into effect on Valentines Day (I'm not joking, although
it is funny.)

Leaders of all legal factions, plus the FARC and ELN welcomed the
agreement. The paramilitaries have yet to be heard from, unless their most
recent massacre, committed today, is their response.

Marulanda pointedly told the press that under no circumstances would he
consider meeting with, or negotiating with, the paramilitaries.

Louis Proyect
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