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It is undeniable that 2016 was a significant year in Colombian history, because the FARC guerrillas signed an agreement to lay down their arms and become a legal political organization, and this development enabled President Santos to win the Nobel Peace Prize.
Approaching year’s end we send sincere and respectful greetings to all of Colombian society and in particular to the poorest and most excluded sectors, wishing them joy and strength in spite of so many difficulties, and to reach their most precious goals in the New Year.
The ELN, aware of the need for all of society to participate in the peace discussions, as is indicated in the first point of the agenda agreed with the National Government, considers that mining and energy policy is of strategic importance for the country and therefore requires extensive debate by the people of Colombia.
With regard to International Human Rights Day, commemorated on December 10th, what can be observed in our country is a disheartening panorama of their violation. A State which in its discourse promises to guarantee life and the integrity of critical thought has been incapable in 2016.
While one arm of the extreme right conspires in Congress, in the high Courts and in the big media corporations, against the agreements signed with the FARC for a political solution to the conflict; the other arm, that of the military extreme right, intensifies persecution against leaders of social protest and the legal left.