Colombians reject deal to end 52-year war with Marxist rebels

October 3, 2016 03:14

BOGOTA, - Colombians rejected a peace deal with Marxist insurgents in a referendum on Sunday, plunging the nation into uncertainty and dashing President Juan Manuel Santos' dream of ending the 52-year war.

The surprise victory for the "no" camp - by less than half a percentage point - was likely to shatter a sense of international jubilation - from the White House to the Vatican - at what appeared to be the end of the longest-running conflict in the Americas.

Before the referendum, Santos was confident of victory. He said a "no" vote would be "catastrophic" and that he would return Colombia to war if the deal was rejected.

Santos, 53, was due to address the nation at 7 p.m. local time (0000 GMT). 

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