On Thursday, Venezuelan President Nicolas Maduro received Spain’s former President Jose Rodriguez-Zapatero, who arrived in Caracas to back the dialogue process between the Colombian government and the National Liberation Army (ELN).
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"Getting the ELN to renounce violence is a great goal that will strengthen peace and security in Colombia and Venezuela, especially on their common border," Rodriguez-Zapatero stated.
On Wednesday, the Colombian government delegation and ELN representatives held an extraordinary meeting to solve the tension generated after the rebel group did not accept President Gustavo Petro’s announcement of a bilateral ceasefire on Dec. 31, 2022.
Petro assured that his administration did not make a unilateral decision on the ceasefire. However, he acknowledged that there was an error at the time of announcing the subject.
"The information that came to us was that there was a bilateral provision. That is the reason why we made the announcement," the President stated, stressing that discovering who erred is a supplementary matter.
On Thursday, the Petro administration and the ELN resolved the crisis and agreed to restart a second round of negotiations on Feb. 13 in Mexico to achieve lasting peace in Colombia.
“Democracy is a continuous dialogue,” Rodriguez-Zapatero stated and hoped that the talks between the Bolivarian government and the opposition in Mexico also be fruitful.