Colombia's emotional struggle with the past – why peace was rejected

  • On October the 2nd the Colombian people rejected the peace agreement between the government and the FARC in a referendum with a very thin majority of 0.4%. With this unexpected rejection, the referendum was in some ways similar to the Brexit referendum, for the results of which David Cameron was as little prepared as Juan Manuel Santos for his rejection; there was obviously no Plan B. In the last weeks, the government undertook ten changes to the agreement, but it will not go through a referendum again. Santos, as he said, has learned his lesson from the rejection and will seek to have the amended peace agreement approved in Congress. This will likely lead to the implementation of the peace agreement and the furtherance of its goals, such as a DDR process, land reforms, a transitional justice process and reparations for victims, just to mention a few. But this progress in peace will be seen as being at odds with popular opinion. Many of the “no” voters are still not satisfied with the adjustments made by the government and the FARC, and neither are the sectors of the opposition mainly responsible for the rejection. Nevertheless, the government and the FARC are progressing with the implementation, and peace talks with the second-largest – and now the last standing – guerrilla group, the ELN, are scheduled to start in 2017. The prospects for 2018 and onwards, when the presidency election will be held, are more questionable.

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Author:Bettina M. E. BenzingORCiDGND
Parent Title (German):Bretterblog
Document Type:Report
Date of Publication (online):2016/12/01
Date of first Publication:2016/11/30
Publishing Institution:Universitätsbibliothek Johann Christian Senckenberg
Release Date:2016/12/01
Die Beiträge der Autorinnen und Autoren auf dem Bretterblog stehen unter einer Creative Commons Namensnennung-NichtKommerziell-KeineBearbeitung 3.0 Unported Lizenz. Reposts sowie Zitate aus den Beiträgen sind nur bei Nennung des Namens der jeweiligen Autorin oder des jeweiligen Autors sowie bei Verlinkung des Originalposts zulässig.
Institutes:Gesellschaftswissenschaften / Gesellschaftswissenschaften
Dewey Decimal Classification:3 Sozialwissenschaften / 32 Politikwissenschaft / 320 Politikwissenschaft
Licence (German):License LogoCreative Commons - Namensnennung-Nicht kommerziell-Keine Bearbeitung 3.0