The negotiators of the National Liberation Army (ELN) confirmed today that their first commander, Eliécer Herlinto Chamorro, alias Antonio García, will attend the closing of the third cycle of peace talks with the Government of Colombia together with the president of the country, Gustavo Petro.
The ELN delegation indicated on Twitter that García will participate in the signing of the agreements that will be signed this afternoon in Havana, at the close of this cycle, which began on May 2.
#At this time Government Peace Delegations and the ELN sign agreements that will be presented in a few minutes. Participation of the Company, first point of the #AgendadeMexicoand Bilateral Ceasefire constitute #TheAgreementsofCuba pic.twitter.com/DvI8V2zgnt
– ELN Delegation (@DelegacionEln) June 9, 2023
Before the signing, Petro plans to meet separately with representatives of the Colombian government and ELN delegations.
The presence of Petro and García has raised expectations regarding the content of the agreements reached in this cycle, in which, in addition to humanitarian relief and the participation of civil society in the peace process, a bilateral ceasefire has been negotiated , according to the parties from social networks.
The High Commissioner for Peace of the Government of Colombia, Iván Danilo, assured yesterday, Thursday, that the agreed ceasefire will be “national” in scope, although with differentiated incidences in the different territories and will have an initial duration of six months. No further details have been released.
The closing of the third cycle was initially scheduled for yesterday Thursday, but both parties requested just a few hours before delaying it 24 hours to “finalize details on the Cuba Agreements and their respective protocols.”
It was the second extension, since the cycle was originally going to end on May 29, but the parties requested that it be delayed ten days to achieve results because it was “working positively.”
Today it will take place in Havana, #Cuba 🇨🇺, the Closing Ceremony of the Third Cycle of the Peace Dialogues Table between the Government of #Colombia 🇨🇴 and the National Liberation Army (ELN).#CubaForPeace pic.twitter.com/Pv9861omx6
— Cuban Foreign Ministry (@CubaMINREX) June 9, 2023
In addition to the complexity of the negotiation – about which the parties have kept strict confidentiality – the talks have been affected by politics in Bogotá.
Some statements by Petro led the ELN to request a “pause” of several days after a government crisis, with two close advisers to the president involved, which has clouded the Colombian political climate.