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Members of Colombia's National Liberation Army (ELN) - photo EFE
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According to a previously-signed agreement, Colombia and the Colombian Marxist-guerrilla rebel group The National Liberation Army (ELN) will begin peace talks in Quito, Ecuador on October 27. 

These expected peace talks come after a deal was made with Colombia's more commonly known guerrilla group, The Revolutionary Armed Forces of Colombia (FARC). On June 23, 2016, Colombia president Juan Manuel Santos and FARC leaders signed a ceasefire deal. However, voting in a public referendum on October 2, 2016, the deal was narrowly rejected by 50.22% of the Colombian people.

Colombia has been under an asymmetrical civil war since 1964 when the central government began fighting paramilitary groups, organized crime groups, and the Marxist-Leninist guerrilla rebel group, FARC, and the Marxist-guerrilla rebel group ELN.

President Juan Manuel Santos will be receiving the Nobel Peace Prize in 2016 for his peace efforts in Colombia.


Vocabulary
previously - before now
Marxist - following the teachings of Karl Marx / communist
guerrilla (groups) - an independent army that irregularly attacks a main army by "surprise"
ceasefire - an agreement to stop (military) fighting
referendum - a vote by the people of a country on a specific issue / question
asymmetrical - with many unequal sides, not only two sides

paramilitary - a semi-military force, not a regular military force
civil war - a war between one country / nation

solely - by one only

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Venezuelans cross into Colombia in the rain to buy food and medicine - photo by AFP
For the second time this month, Venezuela has opened its border with Colombia to allow Venezuelans to cross over into the country to buy food, medicine, and other household items.

Venezuela has experienced  a shortage of food and other necessities since the country fell into an economic crisis caused by the dropping price of oil in recent months. Oil is the country's main source of income and because of the drop in price, Venezuelan businesses have been unable to stock their store shelves with food.  

The first time this month Venezuela opened the border to Colombia, 35,000 people crossed over. This time, 100,000 people crossed over into Colombia to buy food and medicine. 

The main political opposition party in Venezuela blames the shortages on the policies of the Venezuelan government which have hindered local businesses from importing materials from other countries. 

Many have criticized President Nicolas Maduro for ignoring the people's need for life's necessities.


Vocabulary
border (noun) - the line that divides two different countries, regions, or areas, etc.
shortage (noun) - a period fo time when there is little supply of something and people need more of it
necessities (noun) - things people need to live and not die
crisis (noun) - an emergency situation
income (noun) - money earned
drop (noun) - decrease
to stock (verb) - to add to and keep an amount that can be used for the future
to hinder (verb) - to stop or slow something down
policies (noun) - the rules, actions, and/or practices of an organization
import (verb) - to bring in to one country from another country

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Venezuelans cross the Colombian border to buy food and medicine alongside military troops - photo by AFP