As the government of Colombia and the FARC enter their 40th cycle of peace talks, the people of Colombia are optimistic that an end is in sight to the half century of civil war that has torn their country apart and they are preparing for peace.
The peace talks reconvened August 20 in Havana with “a renewal of confidence in the peace process, spawned by the parties’ expressed willingness to accelerate the pace in Havana and to de-escalate the violence in Colombia.” Among their decisions in recent talks was the promise to create a truth commission. As the peace talks have advanced, the amount of violence has decreased according to a recent study by the United Nations.
As Amada Benevides explains in her letter to CPNN from Colombia, “The process of negotiating a peace agreement with the FARC has advanced many topics, including education for peace. For the first time in Colombia it is being mentioned explicitly, and not by other names, and in this sense we have several new initiatives . . . [including a] National Meeting on Education for Peace, to be held on 1 and 2 October.” She adds, “Since we have been working more than 15 years to put forward the necessity of peace education in Colombia, this is really a very exciting time.”