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Colombia's bishops see new hopes for peace talks with FARC

September 24, 2010

The Catholic bishops of Colombia are renewing their call for peace talks after the second-ranking leader of the FARC rebel group was killed in a military operation.

Victor Suarez Rojas, known as “Mono Jojoy,” was one of 20 FARC members killed by a bomb in the town of Meta. “Columbia has rid itself of an executioner,” said President Juan Manuel Santos.

Bishop Juan Vicente Cordoba, the secretary of the nation’s episcopal conference, had a more measured reaction:

“The Catholic Church never rejoices in the death of anyone, but the death of ‘Mono Jojoy’ is a call for Colombians to realize that war only brings more war, sadness, desolation and losses on both sides.”

Archbishop Ruben Salazar Gomez of Barranquilla, the president of the bishops’ conference, agreed that the death of the rebel leader “may make way for the beginning of a negotiation process with the FARC.”


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