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Tuesday 20th March 2018

Thousands March Against Incoming Colombia President Duque

Politics

7Dnews London

Wed, 08 Aug 2018 14:51 GMT

Thousands of people gathered in Bogota and a dozen more cities across Colombia on Tuesday to express their opposition to the incoming president Ivan Duque.

Hours before Duque's inauguration ceremony, people marched in the streets, some holding white flags and signs that called for the preservation of a peace deal with the country's leftist rebels.

Throughout his campaign, Duque promised to push changes in the peace agreement, including creating tougher penalties for former leaders of the now defunct Revolutionary Armed Forces of Colombia responsible for crimes against humanity. Under the accord, most rebels who fully confess their crimes will be spared any jail time, a sore point for many Colombians.

Colombia's conflict between leftist rebels, the state and paramilitary groups left at least 260,000 dead, some 60,000 missing and millions displaced.

Duque is taking Colombia's presidency at a critical juncture: coca production is soaring to record levels, holdout illegal armed groups are battling for territory where the state has little or no presence and a spate of killings of social activists has underlined that peace remains a relative term.

Latin America