TIME Colombia

Colombia Rebel Leader Says Peace Referendum Has ‘No Legal Effect’

Because the final accord has already been signed by the government

(BOGOTA, Colombia) — The head of the Revolutionary Armed Forces of Colombia says the peace deal’s loss in a referendum has “no legal effect whatsoever.”

The rebel leader known as Timochenko issued a short video message Monday reiterating the group’s willingness to abide by a permanent cease-fire.

He dismissed the referendum’s results as a political defeat that’s not legally binding.

He says the final accord had already been signed with the government and deposited with the Swiss Federal Council in Bern as a special humanitarian agreement between warring parties under the Geneva Conventions.

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