On September 23, guerrilla group the Revolutionary Armed Forces of Colombia (FARC) reached a key agreement with the Colombian government about how to approach transitional justice in a post-conflict scenario. If a picture could speak a thousand words, then the photo op of the historic handshake between President Juan Manuel Santos and alias "Timochenko" said plenty.
A newly published report states that the FARC stepped up actions in 2011, in no small part due to their alliance with rebel cousins the ELN, while despite mass arrests the new generation paramilitary groups appear relatively intact.
The Colombian government is stepping up security measures along the eastern border with Venezuela, where the head of the country's largest guerrilla group is believed to be based, in response to a series of attacks in the region in recent days.
Almost exactly a decade after peace talks collapsed, the commander-in-chief of Colombia's FARC rebels has reached out to the president and suggested that negotiations pick up again where they left off.
The defeat of the FARC, and the capture or killing of its new commander-in-chief, alias "Timochenko," will be extremely difficult without the active collaboration of Venezuela.
In his first public statement as leader of the rebel group, the FARC's new commander-in-chief, alias 'Timochenko,' labeled the Colombian governments response to the death of 'Alfonso Cano' as arrogant.
Colombia's hopes for a peaceful solution to the 47 year civil conflict may have suffered a setback, after the FARC opted for a military, rather than a political, figure as their new commander-in-chief.
Rodrigo Londoño Echeverri, alias "Timochenko," is only the third commander-in-chief in the FARC's nearly 50-year history. Of the three, Timochenko has the most mysterious past.
Following the death of their leader, alias 'Alfonso Cano,' the FARC guerrilla group issued a statement refusing to surrender, but said they would continue to seek a political solution with the Colombian government.
In 47 years of existence the FARC have only had two commanders-in-chief: founder "Manuel Marulanda," who died of natural causes in 2008, and "Alfonso Cano," killed in an army offensive on November 4. Who will be the third, and will he be able to hold the rebel army together?