The leader of the Revolutionary Armed Forces of Colombia (FARC) has confirmed that preliminary talks are under way with the Colombian government on reaching a peace deal.
"We come to the table for dialogue without rancor, or arrogance," FARC leader Rodrigo Londono, who uses the nom de guerre Timochenko, said in a statement, AFP reported on Monday.
Last week, Colombian President Juan Manuel Santos announced that the government and the leftist FARC rebels had agreed to hold peace talks for the first time since 2002.
In response to the statement by the FARC leader, President Santos said that "with much hope, we the people of Colombia are going to see if we can end this conflict, which has caused us so much pain."
According to Colombian media outlets, preliminary talks took place in Venezuela and Cuba and full-blown peace talks will begin on October 5 in Oslo, Norway and then continue in Havana, Cuba.
FARC is Latin America's oldest insurgent group and has been battling the government since 1964.
The rebel organization has more than 9,000 fighters operating across a large swathe of the eastern jungles of the Andean nation.