Colombians march in support of Farc peace talks

The biggest march took place in the capital, Bogota

Related Stories

Tens of thousands of people in Colombia have taken part in marches to support the continuing peace talks between the left-wing Farc rebels and government negotiators.

President Juan Manuel Santos called on Colombians to seize the opportunity.

"All conditions are set. We need to unite all Colombians and put an end to the conflict," said Mr Santos at a march in the capital, Bogota.

The talks, aimed at ending five decades of violence, are taking place in Cuba.

The demonstrations have attracted large crowds in Cali, Barranquilla, Santander and other Colombian cities.

The negotiations are opposed by supporters of former President Alvaro Uribe and big landowners.

They say the Farc rebels are just playing for time and have no intention of giving up their armed struggle.

No ceasefire

The issue is also sensitive with sectors of the armed forces and the police, who have fought Colombia's largest rebel group since the 1960s.

"Those who say the armed forces are not interested in peace are wrong. They are more interested in achieving peace than anyone else," said Mr Santos, after paying homage to civilians and soldiers who have died in the violence.

Hundreds of thousands of people have died and more than three million have been displaced by the conflict.

Mr Santos reaffirmed that he would not call a ceasefire during the peace talks with the rebels, saying that would only "prolong the conflict".

The first face-to-face negotiations between the government and the left-wing rebels in a decade started last October in the Norwegian capital, Oslo, and transferred to Cuba a month later.

The Colombian government says the final aim is to get the Farc rebels to abandon their armed struggle and join the legal political process.

More on This Story

Related Stories

More Latin America & Caribbean stories

RSS

Features & Analysis

Elsewhere on the BBC

  • HobbitHobbit review

    Nicholas Barber asks whether The Battle of the Five Armies is worthwhile or unnecessary

Programmes

  • Digital candlesClick Watch

    Inside the 'Harry Potter' church, using technology to explore "digital empathy".

BBC © 2014 The BBC is not responsible for the content of external sites. Read more.

This page is best viewed in an up-to-date web browser with style sheets (CSS) enabled. While you will be able to view the content of this page in your current browser, you will not be able to get the full visual experience. Please consider upgrading your browser software or enabling style sheets (CSS) if you are able to do so.