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Colombians Reject Peace Deal With FARC Rebels


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In a shocking turn of events, the Colombian people narrowly rejected the deal with the FARC guerrillas brokered by the Colombian government in a referendum vote 50.23 percent to 49.76 percent. The government of president Juan Manuel Santos had negotiated for four years with the Marxist rebels in Cuba to put an end to the fifty year war that has devastated Colombia an left thousands dead. Just a week ago everyone from Barack Obama to Pope Francis had lauded their efforts to find peace. There was even talk of nominating Juan Manuel Santos for the Nobel Peace Prize. All polls and figures showed that the referendum was most likely going to pass. The result, unexpectedly, went the other way.

So, the question is: what the hell happened? The general consensus is that after 50 years of war with the Marxist rebels, Colombians thought that the agreement was too lenient on them. They were not going to serve prison sentences for their actions but rather were going to be facilitated in returning to society. While half the country was apparently willing to bury the hatchet, the other side is not so quick to forgive. While I think this is a huge mistake, I do understand the feelings that many Colombians have of anger and resentment. The thing is, that sometimes we have to put aside our feelings of anger and hate and seek peace through reconciliation. We’ll see how the FARC rebels respond to this.

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