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FARC Lawyer Says 'Very Few Sensitive Issues Remain before Peace Deal'

Bogotá, May 16 (RHC-Telesur)-- Enrique Santiago, lawyer for the Revolutionary Armed Forces of Colombia (FARC) has said that a final peace deal between the rebels and the government of president Juan Manuel Santos was “very close.”

In statements to Semana magazine published on Sunday, the FARC lawyer said that there were "very little few” sensitive issues to negotiate, and mentioned para-militarism in the South American country.

“We still must agree to a deal regarding paramilitarism … it is well advanced, and security guarantees for the political forces in Colombia, social movements and the FARC once they have become a political force,” said Santiago. He added that a deal regarding a bilateral cease-fire and the reincorporation of former FARC combatants into civilian life were also still pending.

Nevertheless, he expressed great optimism that by year's end there would be a “situation of absolute normalization of political life in Colombia.”

He acknowledged there was lots of goodwill at the negotiating table, but lamented the statements made by political actors inside Colombia, such as former president Alvaro Uribe, who continue to campaign against peace. Still, the FARC lawyer feels that at this point, nothing can stop a peace deal from being signed, which he expects will be approved both by the Congress and the Colombian people.

Edited by Pavel Jacomino
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