Colombia's rebels announce permanent cessation of hostilities under peace deal
Published 28/08/2016 | 22:26
The commander of Colombia's biggest rebel movement said its fighters will permanently cease hostilities with the government beginning with the first minute of Monday, as a result of their peace accord for ending five decades of war.
FARC leader Rodrigo Londono made the announcement on Sunday in Havana, where the two sides negotiated for four years before announcing the peace deal at midweek.
Colombian president Juan Manuel Santos announced on Friday that his military would cease attacks on the Revolutionary Armed Forces of Colombia beginning on Monday.
"Never again will parents be burying their sons and daughters killed in the war," said Londono, who also known as Timoshenko.
"All rivalries and grudges will remain in the past."
Colombia is expected to hold a referendum on October 2 to give voters the chance to approve the deal for ending the political violence that has claimed more than 220,000 lives and driven more than five million people from their homes.
After the agreement is signed, FARC guerrillas are supposed to begin handing their weapons over to United Nations-sponsored monitors.