Friday, September 30, 2016

FT Latam Viva For 30 September, 2016

6:47 PM (8 minutes ago)
to me
Give peace a chance
By Andres Schipani 
September 29, 2016
It was definitely not Charles De Gaulle marching through liberated Paris. Still, the ceremony of the signing of the peace agreement between Colombia’s government of President Juan Manuel Santos and Marxist rebels of the Revolutionary Armed Forces of Colombia (Farc) in Cartagena was quite emotional.
A choir of Afro-Colombian women, victims of a massacre, hailed the moment, singing "we feel very happy the Farc will leave their weapons behind". Meanwhile, miles away on the same day, after ten of years imagining he was dead, a mother was reunited with her son who had joined the rebels as a teenager.
In Cartagena, some 2,000 people including victims dressed in white as a symbol of peace wept, sang, and cheered "no more war" as Mr Santos and the Farc's commander shook hands to agree to end a five-decades drug-fuelled war. One of the world's oldest conflicts has finally come to an end.
Well, not yetOn Sunday, 34m Colombians are entitled to head to the polls in a national referendum to vote on a simple but emotionally-charged question: "Do you support the final accord to end the conflict and build a stable and lasting peace?"
Every peace agreement is a compromise. With divisions running deep, the success or failure of the peace accord will be a function of the personal feelings of millions of Colombians who abhor Farc rebels for their heinous crimes. Just as Brexit divided the UK, the peace accord has triggered ambivalence, splitting Colombia between opposing camps.
When it comes to divided societies, bondholders can now put their faith in an Opec deal for the highly-polarised Venezuela to make good on its debts. After failing to entice investors with a bond swap, the state oil company sweetened the deal as tries at all costs to stave off default.
Many wonder what would happen to Venezuela's $68bn in outstanding foreign bond debts if the country, which is battling its worst economic and political crisis in decades, is drawn into an internecine fight. They, like the Colombians, should perhaps listen to John Lennon and "give peace a chance."
Quote of the week
“From now on our only weapons will be words" - Farc's top commander, Rodrigo Londoño, nom de guerre Timochenko, at the signing of the peace deal.
Special reports
Andre VieiraAndre Vieira
Other views
Chart of the week
As Donald Trump rallies, the Mexican peso falls.
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The week in review
Farc accord is no done deal as Colombians prepare to vote
Most Colombians are deeply ambivalent about something the rest of the world enthusiastically supports
Opec output cut a boon for US shale sector
The higher prices rises, the more rigs can be put back to work, writes Ed Crooks
In charts: Mexico’s Trump rate dilemma
Central bank faces tough choice at last scheduled policy meeting before US election
Elliott pushes for shake-up at Colombia’s Avianca airline
US hedge fund holds talks with senior executives
Turnround starts at scandal-hit Petrobras
New chief begins gargantuan task of reviving oil group by cutting its vast debts
Oil group PDVSA sweetens debt swap offer
Bonds boosted by Venezuelan group’s new proposal of $5.3bn deal
Colombia: ‘Leave the rifles behind’
The country prepares to vote on a peace accord with leftwing rebels to end five decades of conflict
Venezuela’s desperate attempt to avoid bond default
Government and oil company’s assets at risk if Caracas fails to meet its obligations
Brazilians seek political renewal in poll
Voters jaded by corruption look for fresh faces in local elections
Footprints of Colombia’s five decade-long civil war
As half a century of violence comes to an end, the country’s film-makers are shifting their focus to what will be left behind
Brazilian director Daniel Ribeiro on making films beyond the favelas
The 34-year-old artist has won international recognition by exploring universal themes from angst to sexuality
Colombia and Farc sign historic peace deal
Marxist rebels to form political party as western-hemisphere’s longest-running conflict ends
China visitors draw Castro into public eye
Former Cuban president meets with Chinese Premier Li Keqiang and his wife
Venezuela: lurching towards political change
The country’s crisis is nearing its endgame but its future is far from clear
Colombia peace deal with Farc spurs hope of a family reunion
Accord after long and bitter civil war raises chance of bringing mother and son back together