US President Barack Obama will welcome his Colombian counterpart Juan Manuel Santos to the White House in February to discuss the hoped-for end to his country’s long civil war. Also Read - Barack Obama Reveals He Once Broke a Schoolmate’s Nose For Using Racial Slur
Washington has had close ties with Bogota for many years, sending cash, equipment and agents under its “Plan Colombia” to help its Latin American ally combat drug cartels and leftist militants. Also Read - ‘Moment of Great Dishonour & Shame’: Barack Obama Condemns Capitol Riots, Slams Trump For Inciting Violence
Now, Santos’s government is in the final stages of peace negotiations with the Revolutionary Armed Forces of Colombia (FARC) guerrilla movement and hopes to sign a permanent peace deal in March. Also Read - Barack Obama Administration Knowingly Funded Al-Qaeda Affiliate: US Report
Obama will meet the Colombian leader on February 4 in Washington, his office said Tuesday.[ALSO READ: Americans attacking Sikhs thinking they’re Muslims]
“The leaders will hold a bilateral meeting and a commemoration of 15 years of bipartisan cooperation through Plan Colombia, the joint effort to create a safer, more prosperous future for Colombians,” the White House said.
“The visit will present an opportunity to … support the efforts of President Santos to achieve a just and lasting peace accord with the FARC, and discuss a shared vision for future collaboration in the event of an historic peace agreement.”
Colombia’s five-decade-old conflict with the FARC is Latin America’s longest ongoing civil war and has left more than 220,000 people dead.