Aug. 27 - Colombia's president is going ahead with plans to host peace talks with FARC guerrillas. Jessica Gray reports.
Members of Colombia's largest militant group, the FARC, have waged a deadly guerrilla war against government forces for decades. But officials are hopeful they can end the conflict as President Juan Manuel Santos presses forward with plans to host peace talks with armed groups. On Monday Santos said the government is learning from mistakes made during previous failed talks and that it was time to step up measures to ensure peace at all costs. Santos hopes to host the talks in a neutral country like Cuba or Norway and so far has been successful in getting FARC leaders to come on board. The process has even spurred the ELN, Colombia's second biggest armed group, to seek its own place in the talks. Should he be successful, Santos will secure his place in history, which would likely boost his flagging popularity amid security concerns over oil plant attacks. Some Colombian residents say they are still sceptical of the FARC's intentions, since it tricked the government during the last peace summit and used a troop pullout to build up its forces and drug running operations in Colombia's vast jungles.