On 13 March 2013 the group Rodeémos el Diálogo (ReD), LSE Colombian Society, and Colombian Chevining Scholars, successfully held a conference on the Santos-FARC peace talks at LSE. They conceived the conference as a non-partisan initiative to show support for the negotiations. The twofold aim was to offer a better understanding of the peace talks and to draw lessons from El Salvador, Guatemala, Nepal, and Northern Ireland. The conference not only achieved such aims, but also exemplified how civil society can informally participate in the negotiations. Such participation is important in preparing the ground for civil society’s direct participation in the post-agreement phase. Although the road ahead is difficult, there seems to be a general agreement that the opportunity for ending the armed conflict between FARC and the Colombian government is real. Three important elements will ensure reaching a final agreement: President Santos must show leadership, FARC has to review its maximalist negotiation strategy, and Colombian society needs to gain ownership.
The policy brief from this event is available here.
Further information from Rodeémos el Diálogo (ReD) available here.