GUE/NGL expresses its support for the peace process in Colombia

The GUE/NGL Group expresses its full support for the peace process between the Colombian Government and the FARC; it also calls for the opening of peace negotiations with  the ELN guerrilla group.

The Group deplores the recent increase in military actions on both sides with a high cost in human lives both among the military and the guerrillas, as well as the suffering and displacement of thousands of civilians.

It fully supports the request by M. Ernesto Samper, General Secretary of UNASUR, for an immediate bilateral ceasefire.

The Group welcomes the progress made in points 1, 2 and 4 of the negotiation's agenda in Havana. It encourages the parties to continue this effort in order to reach a political solution to the social and political conflict in Colombia and announces that it will support the creation of a group of Friends of the Peace and Human Rights in Colombia within the European Parliament.

The GUE/NGL Group expresses its deep concern at the killing of 88 members of the Marcha Patriotica, and requests an end to the impunity for those crimes, the release of more than 350 members of organisations who were detained after taking part in peaceful protests, and calls on the government to fully guarantee freedom of speech, political participation and trade union activities.