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2011-11-09

After Cano’s death, a chance for peace in Colombia

By César Morales Colón for Infosurhoy.com – 09/11/2011

President Juan Manuel Santos vows to continue looking for peace in the Andean nation after massive blow to the FARC.

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Colombian forces stationed at a military base in the department of Cauca launched the offensive that led to the death of Alfonso Cano, the leader of the Revolutionary Armed Forces of Colombia (FARC), on Nov. 4. (Jaime Saldarriaga/Reuters)

Colombian forces stationed at a military base in the department of Cauca launched the offensive that led to the death of Alfonso Cano, the leader of the Revolutionary Armed Forces of Colombia (FARC), on Nov. 4. (Jaime Saldarriaga/Reuters)

WASHINGTON, D.C., U.S.A. – Colombian President Juan Manuel Santos vowed to continue working for a peaceful solution to the conflict that rattles his nation of 42 million following the death of Revolutionary Armed Forces of Colombia (FARC) leader Alfonso Cano.

“We will keep military pressure as long as we don’t see a real will for peace sign from the FARC,” Santos said.

Santos added the military operation against Cano “was the right thing to do.”

“We didn’t do it just for the sake of being congratulated,” Santos said on Nov. 8 in Bogotá.

Cano took the helm of the FARC in March 2008, when its reclusive founder and leader Manuel Marulanda Vélez died.

“This is the moment to decide to lay down your arms because, as we’ve said many times, the alternative is prison or a tomb,” Santos said on Nov. 5 in the city of Popayán, hours after the announcement of Cano’s death. “I want to send a message to each and every member of that organization. Demobilize ... or otherwise you will end up in a prison or in a tomb. We will achieve peace.”

Former Colombian President Andrés Pastrana Arango said FARC should engage in peace talks with the government.

“This is a key moment for the FARC,” Pastrana Arango said. “Those in its leadership who still remain alive should think very seriously about starting peace negotiations in order to end this war for the benefit of all Colombians.”

Analysts signified Cano’s death as the beginning of the end for the ruthless terrorist organization.

Alfredo Rangel, a political expert from the Foundation for Security and Democracy in Bogotá, said Cano’s death was “extremely significant.”

“This was the most painful loss for the FARC since the deaths of Raúl Reyes and Marulanda,” he said. “It will be very difficult for the insurgents to replace him. In the short term there will be a lack of leadership. The end won’t be automatic or immediate, but we are coming to the end of the FARC.”

But the FARC has vowed to continue its fight in the wake of Cano’s death.

“We have charted a policy, and that policy will continue,” the FARC said in a statement on Nov. 6.

The FARC acknowledged Cano's death, but promised that he will be replaced by people “with courage and absolute conviction in the final victory.”

Government officials also praised the military operation, saying it will boost the image of Colombia as a safe country that has a respect for the law.

“Foreign investors and Colombians in general have less sources of uncertainty today,” said Juan Carlos Echeverry, Colombia’s finance minister, in reference to Cano’s death. “Economically speaking, this has a positive effect. International markets see this as something very positive.”

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  1. JOSE EDUARDO MARQUEZ 01/02/2012

    IT IS A TRUE PLAGUE BUT WITH PRESIDENT SANTOS' FAVOR I HAVE LOTS OF FAITH THAT 2012 WITH GOD'S FAVOR TOO WE ARE GOING TO GET OUT OF THIS PLAGUE WE HAVE IN VENEZUELA IT IS NO SECRET THAT HUGO CHAVEZ IS CLOSE TO THE GUERRILLA GROUP DO YOU REMEMBER MARULANDA WE'LL SEE YOU ON THE BORDER THE SPEECHES IN THE ASSEMBLY DECLARATIONS BY FIDEL TO VANESA WHEN VANESA ASKED COMMANDANT FIDEL INNOCENTLY WHAT IS SOCIALISM AND FIDEL ANSWERED THE SAME AS COMMUNISM CHAVES THE PARACHUTIST WANTS TO STAY IN MIRAFLORES AS LONG AS HE PLEASES THE PEOPLE SHOULD NOT GET CONFUSED HOW WAS THE COUNTRY THIRTEEN YEARS AGO AND HOW IS IT NOW WHEN this government CAME WHAT WAS THE PRICE OF FOOD AND NOW THERE IS NO FOOD THE VENEZUELAN CITIZEN WAS BORN WEALTHY BECAUSE THE BLACK GOLD BELONGS TO ALL OF US WHO ARE BORN IN THIS BLESSED COUNTRY }}}} NOW THERE ARE NO MORE MILLIONAIRES RATHER WHEN YOU'RE BORN YOU'RE ALREADY IN DEBT BECAUSE OF THE GOVERNMENT'S POOR MANAGEMENT. THE CHINESE TAKE THE OIL AT 50 DOLLARS A BARREL AND ON THE MARKET IT'S 100 DOLLARS WE'RE LOSING 50 DOLLARS PER BARREL 430,000 BARRELS A DAY A MOUNTAIN OF MONEY. HE'S SURROUNDED BY SUPER MILLIONAIRES WHO DON'T CARE ABOUT THE PEOPLE FIDEL GAVE AN ORDER TO HIS FUTURE LEADER HATE THE AMERICANS UNTIL DEATH JOIN UP WITH THE FROTH OF THE WORLD OF DICTATORS LIKE SADDAM HUSSEIN GADHAFI THE ONE IN SYRIA BELARUS AND HE SAYS THAT ILICH RAMIREZ 'EL CHACAL' IS A REVOLUTIONARY THE ASSASSIN OF THE YOUNG UNIVERSITY STUDENT THE PSYCHIATRIST CHIRINOS WHO IS 77 YEARS OLD WHO PLEASE REMEMBER WHEN HE WENT TO HIS OFFICE THE BRAINWASHING FIDEL HAD GIVEN HIM YOU HAVE TO LIVE FOR 30 YEARS IN A ROOM WITH NO PRIORITY BECAUSE YOU'RE A CRIMINAL CRAZY PSYCHIATRIST VENEZUELANS YOU HAVE A CHANCE AND IT'S IN FEBRUARY THE TOTAL OF 6 IS GOING TO GIVE YOU THE OUTCOME IN OCTOBER THE HATE AND RESENTMENT IS GOING TO END HURRAY

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