Cuba to host Colombia peace talks with ELN rebels

May 5, 2018 GMT

BOGOTA, Colombia (AP) — Colombia’s government and its last major rebel movement have agreed to continue peace talks in Cuba after Ecuador last month withdrew as host for the negotiations.

Peace talks with the National Liberation Army had been taking place in Ecuador for more than a year and have been advancing at a slow pace.

The two sides issued a statement Saturday saying the next round of talks will focus on re-establishing a cease-fire that expired in January.

Cuba played host to peace talks with the much-larger Revolutionary Armed Forces of Colombia that concluded in 2016 with a historic deal paving the way for the demobilization of 7,000 fighters.

Ecuadorean President Lenin Moreno ended his mediating role last month as violence from Colombia’s booming cocaine industry increasingly spills over the border.