BOGOTA – The Colombian Senate around Tuesday midnight ratified the peace agreement between the government and the armed rebel group FARC.
“With 75 votes in favor and zero against, the Senate plenary session approved the new peace agreement. Now it remains to be approved by the House of Representatives,” Interior Minister Juan Fernando Cristo said in a statement.
The minister said the revised agreement, signed on Nov. 24, was discussed and approved at the Senate plenary with participation from victims and representatives from the Church, as well as black and indigenous organizations.
Cristo added that this move and the “expected approval from the House of Representatives Wednesday” would kick off implementation of the agreement.
The minister highlighted the quality of the debate, saying that those in favor of the pact as well as those opposed were listened to with equal respect.
The Senate discussion was opened by the government negotiation team chief, Humberto de la Calle, and Peace Commissioner Sergio Jaramillo, who made a plea in favor of the pact, revised after an Oct. 2 referendum rejected the previous version.
On Wednesday, the lower house of the Colombian Congress will convene in the early morning to discuss and vote on the revised peace deal.