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Colombia rebels hope to meet with pope

Pope Francis

Pope Francis

Colombia’s FARC rebels said Tuesday they have asked to meet with Pope Francis when he visits Cuba in September.

The guerrillas have been holding peace talks with a Colombian government delegation in Havana since November 2012.

The goal is to negotiate an end to the longest running insurgency in Latin America, which dates back to the 1960s.

The rebel delegation asked to meet with the pontiff through the visiting chairman of the Colombian Bishops Conference, Luis Augusto Castro, the FARC said on their blog.

The pope will visit Cuba on September 19 to 22 as part of a tour that will also take him to the United States.

Francis played the role of mediator in preliminary discussions between the United States and Cuba on restoring bilateral ties, which finally did happen on July 20.



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