Colombian President Juan Manuel Santos has been awarded the Nobel Peace Prize for his efforts to end the 52-year conflict with left-wing rebels. The Nobel committee in Norway praised him for his peace agreement with Farc rebels, signed last month after four years of negotiations.

Santos, won the 2016 Nobel Peace Prize in a surprise after Colombians voted "No" to an agreement he signed with Marxist rebels to end 52 years of war. Santos has promised to revive a peace plan even though Colombians narrowly rejected the accord in a referendum on Sunday. Many voters reckoned it was too lenient on the FARC guerrillas.

The conflict has killed about 260,000 people. More than six million have been internally displaced. President Santos joins a long line of Nobel Peace Prize winners who have been rewarded for effort as much as achievement.

In announcing the award, Kaci Kullmann Five, the chairwoman of the committee, commended President Santos for starting the process, even as she acknowledged that the people of Colombia had rejected the outcome.

She said she hoped that awarding the prize to Mr. Santos would act as a spur for a future agreement. “The committee hopes that the peace prize will give him strength to succeed in this demanding task,” she said. “Further, it is the committee’s hope that in the years to come, the Colombian people will reap the fruits of the reconciliation process.”


President Santos with FARC Commander-in-Chief Timoloen Jimenez

source: reuters

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