Speed Reads

round two

Colombian government to sign new peace deal with FARC rebels

The Colombian government announced Tuesday it will sign a new peace deal with FARC rebels on Thursday, in an attempt to permanently end more than 50 years of fighting.

In an October referendum, voters rejected a previous accord between the groups, and this new agreement will be sent to Congress for approval, not a popular vote. The opposition, led by former President Alvaro Uribe, said at the time the original deal did not punish the rebels enough, and Uribe says this new accord still doesn't go far enough.

More than 50 changes have been made to the original peace deal signed in September, and Colombian President Juan Manuel Santos says there is no more room for negotiation. "We have the unique opportunity to close this painful chapter in our history that has bereaved and afflicted millions of Colombians for half a century," he said Tuesday in a televised statement. More than 220,000 people have been killed during the conflict, and there are worries that if this deal is not approved, the ceasefire in place could disintegrate.