Adrienne Arsht Latin America Center Deputy Director Jason Marczak writes for US News and World Report on the recent Colombian elections in which incumbent President Juan Manuel Santos emerged victorious:
President Juan Manuel Santos took one step closer to being nominated for the Nobel Peace Prize on Sunday. In the second round of Colombia’s presidential election — a contest portrayed as a choice on the trajectory of peace negotiations — Santos, with 51 percent of the vote, defeated challenger Óscar Iván Zuluaga by six percentage points.
Santos, who faced a tougher than expected race, has a second four-year mandate to move forward a country that became Latin America’s third-largest economy this year. But the window for success is much shorter when it comes to the peace process. Launched in November 2012, the pressure is quickly mounting for the government to reach agreement on the remaining three items of the six-point agenda. But with negotiators taking six months to reach agreement on the first agenda item, land reform, it is feared that it will take years rather than months to craft a final deal.