Colombian rebels nearing deal on land reform

Updated 26 May 2013

Colombian rebels nearing deal on land reform

HAVANA: Colombia’s leftist rebels said yesterday that they are close to a deal with the Bogota government on land reform, one of the most contentious items in their protracted peace negotiations.
“Yes, it should be finished tomorrow, and a joint document will be presented, signed by both sides,” the FARC’s Andres Paris told reporters, without revealing details of the agreement.
Paris made his remarks at the entrance of the Havana Convention Center, where months of negotiations so far have focused almost entirely on land reform — the first of five agenda items to be discussed.
Another delegate from the Revolutionary Armed Forces of Colombia, Laura Villa, read a communique declaring the rebel group welcomes “a partial agreement on the first item of the agenda.”
The struggle for land reform, Villa said, is among the “profound changes that the country needs to achieve the genuine democracy and social justice.”
Land distribution was one of the triggers of the decades-old conflict Colombia, where there is gaping inequality that divides wealthy landowners and poor peasants.
If they succeed in finishing up land reform talks this weekend, both delegations will take a break of several days, and then begin talks on political participation.


Trump had ‘meltdown’ over House vote on Syria, says Pelosi

Updated 37 min 30 sec ago

Trump had ‘meltdown’ over House vote on Syria, says Pelosi

  • Democrats say Trump had a temper tantrum because of the number of Republicans who joined Democrats to vote for a resolution condemning his Syria pullout move

WASHINGTON: US House Speaker Nancy Pelosi said Democratic leaders’ White House meeting was cut short after Republican President Donald Trump had a “meltdown” over a House of Representatives vote condemning his Syria withdrawal.
Trump was insulting to Pelosi and the meeting deteriorated into a diatribe by Trump, Senate Democratic leader Chuck Schumer and House Majority Leader Steny Hoyer told reporters.
“What we witnessed on the part of the president was a meltdown. Sad to say,” Pelosi told reporters as she and the other Democrats emerged from the White House.
The Democratic leader said Trump had a temper tantrum because of the number of Republicans who joined Democrats to vote for a resolution condemning the president’s decision to withdraw US forces from northeastern Syria, clearing the way for Turkey’s offensive against US-allied Syrian Kurds.
“I think that vote — the size of the vote, more than 2-1 of the Republicans voted to oppose what the president did — probably got to the president. Because he was shaken up by it,” Pelosi said after emerging from the White House.
“And that’s why we couldn’t continue in the meeting because he was just not relating to the reality of it.”
Republican Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy came out of the building later and accused Pelosi of storming out of the meeting.
There was no immediate response from the White House.