Skip to main content

Colombia's Santos wins re-election

By Claudia Dominguez and Dana Ford, CNN
updated 7:20 AM EDT, Mon June 16, 2014
Colombian President Juan Manuel Santos casts his vote in the presidential runoff election on June 15, 2014.
Colombian President Juan Manuel Santos casts his vote in the presidential runoff election on June 15, 2014.
STORY HIGHLIGHTS
  • NEW: Juan Manuel Santos predicts the start of a new Colombia
  • With more than 99% of polling stations reporting, he had nearly 51% of the vote
  • Challenger Oscar Ivan Zuluaga won some 45% of ballots
  • Key election question: How should the government handle the FARC?

(CNN) -- Capping a hotly contested contest, Colombian President Juan Manuel Santos won re-election Sunday.

With more than 99% of polling stations reporting, he had nearly 51% of the vote versus the 45% won by challenger Oscar Ivan Zuluaga, according to election officials.

A first-round vote was held last month. None of the five candidates running then received more than 50% of votes, forcing a runoff between Santos and Zuluaga.

Santos was first elected in 2010 on a platform of continuing an offensive against the Revolutionary Armed Forces of Colombia, or FARC, leftist guerrillas at war with the government for decades.

But since late 2012, peace talks with the group have become a hallmark of the Santos presidency.

Zuluaga had called for an end to the peace talks and is against giving any political space to the rebels.

He conceded Sunday night, thanking supporters and promising to continue to fight for the good of the nation.

Santos celebrated in Bogota, predicting the start of a new Colombia.

"These have been unique elections (because) what was at play wasn't the name of a candidate -- but the direction of the nation. Colombians with very different ideas ... came together around a cause," he told cheering crowds, "and that cause is peace."

"This is the end of more than 50 years of violence in this country, and the beginning of a new Colombia," Santos said.

CNN's Catherine E. Shoichet and Rafael Romo contributed to this report.

ADVERTISEMENT
Part of complete coverage on
updated 9:54 PM EST, Tue December 23, 2014
A decade on from devastating 2004 Indian Ocean tsunami, the Red Cross' Matthias Schmale says that the lessons learned have made us safer.
updated 7:24 PM EST, Tue December 23, 2014
As soon as word broke that "The Interview" will hit some theaters, celebrations erupted across social media -- including from the stars of the film.
updated 1:44 PM EST, Tue December 23, 2014
Did a rogue hacker -- or the U.S. government -- cut the cord for the regime's Internet?
updated 8:06 PM EST, Tue December 23, 2014
Monaco's newborn royals, Princess Gabriella and Crown Prince Jacques Honore Rainier, posed for their first official photos with their parents.
updated 12:06 PM EST, Tue December 23, 2014
Tim Berners-Lee, the man credited with inventing the world wide web, gives a speech on April 18, 2012 in Lyon, central France, during the World Wide Web 2012 international conference on April 18, 2012 in Lyon.
What's next for the Internet? Acclaimed scientist Sir Tim Berners-Lee shares his insights.
updated 3:22 AM EST, Tue December 23, 2014
The United States and North Korea have long been locked in a bitter cycle of escalating and deescalating tensions. But the current cyber conflict may be especially hard to predict.
updated 4:00 PM EST, Mon December 22, 2014
A chilling video shows Boko Haram executing dozens of non-Muslims.
updated 6:34 AM EST, Mon December 22, 2014
New planes, new flight tests ... but will we get cheaper airfares?
updated 12:46 PM EST, Sun December 21, 2014
The killing of two cops could not have happened at a worse time for a city embroiled in a public battle over police-community relations, Errol Louis says.
updated 9:51 PM EST, Sun December 21, 2014
The gateway to Japan's capital, Tokyo Station, is celebrating its centennial this month -- and it has never looked better.
updated 11:21 AM EST, Sat December 20, 2014
Unicef has warned that more than 1.7 million children in conflict-torn areas of eastern Ukraine face an "extremely serious" situation.
updated 12:01 PM EST, Mon December 22, 2014
Each day, CNN brings you an image capturing a moment to remember, defining the present in our changing world.
Browse through images from CNN teams around the world that you don't always see on news reports.
ADVERTISEMENT