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Peace talks between the Colombian government and the Revolutionary Armed Forces of Colombia (the FARC) are at a critical point.

At meetings in the Cuban capital Havana, the rebel group described an unprecedented level of progress in resolving the decades-old conflict:

“Never before has a peace process advanced this much. The victims are victims of the conflict and, in this regard, the state has a responsibility whether by action or omission,” said the FARC’s lead negotiator Ivan Marquez.

Talks remain centred around land – a key issue for the FARC, which aims to protect the interests of poor, rural Colombians.

The government’s lead negotiator Humberto de la Calle said, “We know that we are in a key moment of the talks when results are necessary, that is, agrarian agreements that will permit us to continue on with the other points on the agenda.”

A joint statement issued by the two sides says headway has been made on matters including access to and use of land, registration of property and protection of natural reserves.

The Havana talks are to resume on March 11.

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