FARC Calls Unilateral Ceasefire

As a sign of goodwill ahead of peace talks

By Kevin Spak,  Newser Staff

Posted Nov 19, 2012 11:18 AM CST

(Newser) – FARC declared a unilateral ceasefire in its ongoing war against the Colombian government as a sign of goodwill ahead of the peace talks that begin today in Cuba. The Marxist rebels have pledged to stop all military operations until Jan. 20, CNN reports. The government hasn't said if it will follow suit, but CNN thinks that's unlikely. And critics say the ceasefire masks the rebels' true intent: to bulk up their forces, which have been whittled down to about 8,000 over the last decade.

The two sides will meet today in Havana to talk peace for the first time in 10 years. Topics on the table will include payments for war victims, the political and legal fate of the rebels, and drug trafficking, Reuters reports

A rebel of the Revolutionary Armed Forces of Colombia, or FARC, signals a victory sign after being captured by army, along with one other rebel, in Neiva, Colombia, Oct. 10, 2012.   (AP Photo/William Fernando Martinez)
Residents surround a vehicle from where, authorities say, alleged rebels of the Revolutionary Armed Forces of Colombia, FARC, launched home made grenades which damaged a home in Suarez, Nov. 12, 2012.   (AP Photo/Juan Bautista Diaz)
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