Juan Manuel Santos, the Colombian president, last January contacted his Venezuelan counterpart, Hugo Chávez. He asked him to talk to the leaders of the FARC, the oldest guerrilla movement in the world, and convince them to take part in peace talks. According to a source close to Chávez, contact with the insurgents was made in February, and the first talks took place in Havana in April. A smaller guerrilla group, known as the ELN, joined the talks in August.
However, there seemingly is a solution to this 50-year long conflict. This time, facilitators from Norway, Chile, Venezuela and Cuba are watching the talks closely. In addition, according to the source, representatives of the United States and Colombian political groups know exactly how the talks are developing. This participation, accepted by both sides, will no doubt smooth the way toward peace.