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Hopes for Colombia ceasefire rise

President Juan Manuel Santos could ease his long-standing opposition to a ceasefire in Colombia's armed conflict as progress in peace talks with leftist rebels has led the government to rethink its negotiating strategy.

He said that he is heartened by recent actions by the Revolutionary Armed Forces of Colombia, including their declaration of a unilateral ceasefire, which he said the group is honouring.

President Santos did not indicate what specific peace-building gestures are under consideration.

But he stressed that after two years of talks circumstances have changed and the continued military pursuit of rebel leaders while negotiations take place is no longer advisable.

Mr Santos made the announcement following closed-door meetings with conflict resolution experts ahead of the next round of talks this month in Cuba.

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