DHT Holdings Clinches USD 485 Mn Refinancing Deal

Posted On Oct 23 2019 by

first_imgzoomIllustration; Image Courtesy: Pixabay under CC0 Creative Commons license Crude oil tanker owner and operator DHT Holdings has entered into a USD 485 million secured credit facility agreement for the refinancing of 13 of the company’s VLCCs. The new credit facility, with a six-year tenor, will bear interest at a rate equal to Libor + 2.40 pct and will have a 20-year repayment profile.The credit facility was provided by ABN Amro, Nordea, Credit Agricole, DNB, ING, Danish Ship Finance, SEB, DVB and Swedbank.The vessels concerned are Sundarbans, Taiga, Redwood, Hawk, China, Falcon, Condor, Leopard, Lion, Panther, Puma, Mustang and Bronco.In addition, DHT has entered into an agreement with ABN Amro to increase the company’s revolving credit facility to USD 57 million from the current USD 43.4 million. The revolving credit is currently undrawn.Commenting on the refinancing deal, the co-CEOs Svein Moxnes Harfjeld and Trygve P. Munthe said that the facility has supported the company’s focus on robust cash break even levels for the fleet.The facility extends the maturity for the refinanced facilities to the second quarter of 2024 and increases DHT Holdings’ liquidity position.last_img read more


DNV GL Awards AiP for Jiangnan Shipyards VLEC Design

Posted On Oct 23 2019 by

first_imgzoomImage Courtesy: DNV GL Classification society DNV GL has awarded an Approval in Principle (AiP) for the design of a 93,000-cubic meter (cbm) very large ethane carrier to Chinese shipyard Jiangnan.The AiP certificate for the flexible, efficient and environmentally friendly design was presented at the Gastech trade fair in Barcelona. The “PANDA E” design was developed by Jiangnan Shipyard in cooperation with GTT, DNV GL and major equipment manufacturers.“With this latest AiP, we have laid a solid foundation for introducing this ship type to the market and will further enrich our product portfolio in gas carriers and gas-fuelled ship types, which will benefit our clients and, at the same time, reduce emissions. Both Jiangnan and DNV GL will gain from the deeper and broader cooperation that this AiP represents,” said Hu Keyi, Chief Engineer of Jiangnan Shipyard (Group).The vessel will utilize GTT’s reinforced Mark III cargo containment system with a design temperature of minus 104 degrees centigrade. Four standard cargo holds are capable of carrying ethane, ethylene and liquid petroleum gas (LPG), with a capacity of 93,000 cubic meters in total.Significantly reduced fuel consumption was achieved after several rounds of hull form optimizations. The proposed dual-fuel ethane/fuel oil main propulsion system with selective catalytic reduction (SCR) meets the IMO NOx Tier III requirements. Other features include a deck tank, shaft generator and an LNG ready concept. Additionally, a USCG-certified ballast water treatment system has been applied to meet the upcoming regulations.last_img read more


NB Liberals lure Green votes but government still likely to fall Friday

Posted On Oct 17 2019 by

first_imgFREDERICTON – Premier Brian Gallant’s Liberals appear headed for defeat Friday, setting the stage for a Progressive Conservative government to take over in New Brunswick.Tory Leader Blaine Higgs said Thursday the Liberals had tried to lure some of his members to support the throne speech in Friday’s vote, but they are standing firm and will all vote against it.“We stand firm, all 22 of us. We are voting against this throne speech tomorrow morning, and there’s no necessity for any further debate,” said Higgs, who is now positioned to become premier.People’s Alliance Leader Kris Austin — who earlier Thursday would not confirm how his party would vote — said they would vote to defeat the Liberal government.“We are here to say collectively as a caucus, we will not be supporting this government or its throne speech. We’ve made up our mind,” Austin said.The Liberals don’t have the numbers to survive the confidence vote.They won just 21 seats in the September election — one fewer than the Tories — while the Greens and People’s Alliance each won three seats.All three Green members of the New Brunswick legislature said Thursday they’ll vote in favour of the throne speech, which had offered Gallant a brief but dim glimmer of hope that his minority government could survive at least a bit longer.Higgs said he is confident the Liberals will be defeated.“I still remain optimistic, but I’m not here for the goodness of my health … we’ve got to make some decisions that matter,” he said.If the Liberals lose the confidence vote, it’s expected the lieutenant-governor would ask the Tories to try to form government.Gallant said Thursday that if he loses the vote, the Liberals will step aside.“I’ll resign the government. I’ve made it clear that I don’t think New Brunswickers want an election. And frankly if we were to go into an election we would be rebuking the very strong message sent to us on election night. People have sent a minority government to Fredericton for a reason,” he said.If he loses, Gallant said he would speak to his wife about whether to stay on as opposition leader, or quit.Gallant will have one last chance to make his case when he closes debate on the throne speech Friday morning, before the vote is held.Despite the indication of their vote, Green members weren’t giving the Liberal government any glowing endorsements in the legislature Thursday.Leader David Coon said over the last four years he has lost confidence in the government and its leadership.“The political meddling in the work of the legislature, the neglect of our health, child protection and senior care systems, and of the poor, the firing of our chief medical officer of health and the dismantling of her office, the handing over of extramural to Medavie, the inaction on renewable energy and climate change, and the degradation of our forests have all left our province worse off,” Coon said.But he didn’t have a glowing review of the Tories either.“I have little confidence that they have changed, and recent comments on fracking, language rights, Indigenous people and climate change have only confirmed this to me,” Coon said.However he said the amended Liberal throne speech, which contains some items from the Green platform, could be advanced for the benefit of their constituents, and all New Brunswickers.Gallant said he’s hoping opposition members will decide to put politics aside and base their decision on the actual throne speech.“If they do that, and they base their vote on the contents of the speech from the throne, I feel like we can gain the confidence of the house,” he said.Gallant said if he continues to govern, then he knows he will have to do better by working more collaboratively with the other parties.last_img read more


The Cubs Have One Of The Worst Championship Hangovers Ever

Posted On Sep 29 2019 by

Florida Marlins199771-256-327 New York Yankees1939438153-285 Last year’s Chicago Cubs were an overwhelming team, riding one of the most impressive run differentials in recent history to a world championship. But this season, the Cubs have struggled to lift themselves above .500 despite playing in a mediocre division. Chicago should watch out — if it keeps playing this poorly, the Cubs will end up undergoing one of the largest drop-offs ever suffered by a World Series winner.Teams often struggle after a championship. Even the most exceptional roster can get pushed back toward average through some combination of a World Series hangover and regression to the mean. But the Cubs’ slide is uncommon even by those standards. According to run differential, only five other champs in history have declined as much as Chicago has this year1For teams that played fewer than 162 games — including the 2017 Cubs — I pro-rated their run differentials to a 162-game schedule.: Detroit Tigers193527153-218 Of the 10 teams on the list, seven played before 1950, when baseball was a very different sport. In the current era (since 1988), the Cubs drop-off is the third worst, trailing only the 2013 Red Sox — more on them later — and the infamous fire-sale 1997 Marlins. Chicago had more room to fall than most champs — only 19 World Series winners matched the 2016 Cubs’ +252 run differential — but that just makes their current mediocrity stand out all the more starkly.Boston’s decline between 2013 and 2014 provides the best recent precedent for Chicago’s slump. Just two years after current Cubs President Theo Epstein left the Sox, Boston won the World Series with a core roster that Epstein mostly assembled. The following year, however, the Red Sox disappointed their fans by scraping together a woeful 71-win season. This was part of a multi-season trend of the Red Sox zig-zagging between contention and mediocrity, and that stretch wound up being the most extreme set of year-to-year swings in MLB history.But unlike the 2014 Red Sox or the ’98 Marlins, the 2017 Cubs have fallen apart while fielding a roster that’s largely unchanged from the year before. The Red Sox lost a star in Jacoby Ellsbury, along with an everyday catcher (Jarrod Saltalamacchia) and some bit players; the Marlins turned over nearly their entire team after winning it all. By contrast, Dexter Fowler counts as the Cubs’ only notable subtraction, and a healthy Kyle Schwarber (fresh off his World Series heroics) was supposed to offset Fowler’s loss. Instead, Schwarber floundered so much that he was was sent to the minors. (Granted, Fowler hasn’t been impressive with his new team, either.)It’s unlikely that the Cubs will continue to be this bad for the rest of the year. Even with their poor play through the season’s first 83 games, most projections call for them to rack up many more wins over the second half. They ought to sneak into the playoffs in a division with few strong contenders, and once they’re there, anything can happen. But even if you credit Chicago with the elevated run differential that these projections expect over the rest of the season, rather than simply pro-rating their differential so far, the Cubs would still end the year with the eighth-largest decline in history. No matter what happens, the Cubs’ 2017 performance will have been just as historic as it was a year earlier, even if it’s not nearly so impressive. Chicago Cubs201625225-227 Chicago White Sox191719914-185 RUN DIFFERENTIAL St. Louis Cardinals1931211-34-245 Pittsburgh Pirates190926583-182 Los Angeles Angels2002207-7-214 All run differentials are based on a 162-game schedule.Source: Lahman’s Baseball Database Cleveland Indians1948282106-176 Boston Red Sox2013197-81-278 The Cubs’ decline is historic Boston Red Sox191226823-245 TEAMYEARCHAMPIONSHIP YEARFOLLOWING YEARDIFFERENCE read more


Everything Went Right For The 2018 Red Sox Are The Champs Destined

Posted On Sep 29 2019 by

It’s hard to imagine things going more right for the Boston Red Sox than they did last season. Boston jumped out to a scorching 17-2 start, was 38 games over .500 by the All-Star break, posted the most regular-season wins (108) by an MLB team in 17 years, and then steamrolled through the playoffs with an 11-3 postseason record en route to a World Series title. Statistically, it was probably the most impressive performance any major team had in 2018.1Among teams for which we had have game-by-game Elo ratings and predictions — in men’s pro and college football and basketball and Major League Baseball.But now the calendar has flipped to 2019, and as spring training warms up for the Sox in Fort Myers, Florida, Boston must focus on defending its crown — and staving off the inevitable regression that comes in the wake of a season as charmed as the one the Red Sox just enjoyed.As a rule, clubs that win a crazy number of ballgames in one season tend to come back down to earth quickly in the next. Of the 32 teams that cracked the century mark in wins (per 162 games)2We’re including teams in strike-shortened seasons — like the 1994 Montreal Expos — whose wins would prorate out to at least 100. since 1990, 28 had an inferior record the next year,3One team — the 101-win 2003 Yankees — compiled the same number of wins the next season. and 24 failed to return to the 100-win club. (Thirteen failed to break even 95 wins.) On average, these 32 triple-digit winners declined by 9.6 wins the following season. And the Red Sox could be running out of time to make the most of their current core. By 2021, Betts, Bradley, Chris Sale, Xander Bogaerts and Rick Porcello (plus potentially Martinez, who has an opt-out clause) will have all hit free agency. And team president Dave Dombrowski built 2018’s champion in part by bucking MLB’s prospect-hoarding trend and emptying out the farm system’s next generation in favor of short-term wins, so reinforcements aren’t exactly on the way.The result of Dombrowski’s moves was a championship, and one of baseball’s all-time great single season performances, so I’m pretty sure it was worth it. The question now is how steep the drop-off will be in 2019 — and beyond. In many ways, Boston caught lightning in a bottle last season, enjoying the kind of magical year that comes along only once every decade or so. But if history is any guide, the follow-up will have trouble coming close to matching the original. Red Sox15649567+136744110 Rays15278676+5042153 TeamElo RatingWinsLossesRun Diff.Make PlayoffsWin DivisionWin World Series Yankees15669567+13774%41%10% Blue Jays14837587-521331 Avg. Simulated SeasonChance to… Teams that won substantially more than 100 games have tended to regress even harder. The 2002 Mariners, for example, won “only” 93 games after the 2001 squad tied a major league record with 116 wins; the 1999 Yankees won 98 a year after the team took home 114. The inescapable truth is that few major league teams actually have 100 wins of “true talent” on their rosters, much less 108. Most of these huge winners were aided by some not-insignificant amount of luck along the way.And it’s hard to argue that the Red Sox weren’t one of the luckier teams in baseball last season. According to the Pythagorean expectation, a team with Boston’s runs scored and allowed should have won four games fewer than it actually did. Furthermore, a team with Boston’s particular statistical profile (its singles, doubles, walks, etc. — both for and against) should have had a Pythagorean record five games worse than it actually did. Add up those two categories, and the Red Sox benefited from an MLB-high 10 extra wins of luck, whether through prevailing in the relative toss-ups of close games or through stringing hits together (or stranding opposing runners) in an unusually favorable manner.On top of all that, there’s another way a team can have everything go right for it, and that’s at the player level: Did everyone outperform their expected levels of performance at once? Injuries can often play a role here — though the Red Sox were in the middle of the pack in terms of man-games lost to the injured list. More pertinently, Boston also saw a number of players post career-best seasons last year, from American League MVP Mookie Betts (10.6 wins above replacement)4Averaging together the versions of WAR from Baseball-Reference.com and FanGraphs. to blockbuster free-agent signing J.D. Martinez (6.1), plus young up-and-comers such as Andrew Benintendi (4.1) and even longtime puzzles such as Eduardo Rodriguez (2.7).Altogether, 12 of Boston’s 21 regulars (those who played at least 2 percent of the team’s available playing time)5As measured by plate appearances and (leverage-adjusted) innings pitched, scaled to maintain WAR’s implicit 58/42 split between position players and pitchers. exceeded their established level of WAR, with only Jackie Bradley Jr., Eduardo Nunez and the catching tandem of Sandy Leon and Christian Vazquez significantly undershooting their previous production levels during the 2018 regular season.6You could also argue that more should have been expected of Rafael Devers, who had 1.1 WAR in a partial season at age 20 in 2017 but produced only 0.5 WAR with more than double the playing time in 2018. But Devers was also only 21, playing his first season as an MLB regular.And this is to say nothing of the unexpected performances the team received in the postseason from the likes of Steve Pearce — a fizzled-out former prospect who arrived in Boston via a midseason trade and ultimately won World Series MVP — or Nathan Eovaldi, another castoff who had a 1.61 ERA in 22 1/3 postseason innings. (Or, in general, the amazingly fortuitous splits the team had in crucial playoff situations.)All of those different ingredients explain how a team that won 93 games in 2017 suddenly exploded for 108 and won the championship a year later. But again, the pull of baseball’s gravity is strong. Based on data since 1990, we’d expect a team that improved by 15 games between seasons to give back about 5.2 wins the next season. It’s just another data point to toss onto the heap of statistical indicators that foretell a decline for the Red Sox heading into 2019.The good news for Boston is that if your starting point is a 108-win team, you have a ton of room to regress and still be one of the best teams in baseball. Even if the Sox didn’t truly have 108 wins of talent on the roster last year, they still played like a 98-win team according to their underlying statistics, and almost all of that team will be back this season (with the notable exception of closer Craig Kimbrel). According to an early preseason version of our 2019 MLB projections,7Not including Tuesday’s news of Manny Machado signing with the San Diego Padres, although that move has minimal implications for the Red Sox. we rate Boston as the third-best team in baseball, with a 95-67 projected record and a 10 percent chance of repeating as champs, which is also tied for third-best in MLB.Trouble is, that might make the Red Sox only the second-best team in their own division. Our simulations consider the archrival New York Yankees just as likely as Boston to win the World Series and actually think that New York is ever-so-slightly better talent-wise. Although the Sox got the better of the Yankees last season, winning 13 of 23 games (including an August sweep and a four-game division series victory), for all intents and purposes, our projections have the two teams in an absolute dead heat as we look ahead to 2019: The Red Sox still have a Yankees problem on their handsHow our preliminary Elo ratings are forecasting the 2019 AL East race Based on 100,000 simulations of the 2019 MLB seasonSources: Baseball prospectus, Fangraphs, Clay Davenport, Caesar’s Palace Orioles142160102-1981<1<1 read more


Liverpool legend pinpoints Bayerns weakness

Posted On Sep 17 2019 by

first_imgFormer Liverpool defender Sami Hyppia has recently revealed the game plan that could secure the victory for his former team against Bayern Munich.The Reds will take on the German champions next Tuesday at Anfield before travelling to the Allianz Stadium for the return leg on Wednesday, March 13.However, Hyppia who won the Champions League with the Reds in Istanbul in 2005 and later managed Bayer Leverkusen recently pointed out the gaps in the Bavarian side.Klopp on Bayern Munich being underdogs against Liverpool?🗣”I think that’s very funny!”🗣”I see two extremely strong teams facing each other where I don’t know who is going to go through.” pic.twitter.com/H9ZcvuHI5s— Anything Liverpool (@AnythingLFC_) February 14, 2019“Bayern haven’t done that well in their domestic league this season but they are still dangerous,” Hyypia told the Liverpool Echo.“We cannot afford to underestimate them. We have to go full on in both these games.RB Leipzig, Bayern Munich, Robert LewadowskiMatch Preview: RB Leipzig vs Bayern Munich Boro Tanchev – September 14, 2019 RB Leipzig will have the chance to prove their title-winning capabilities when they host Bayern Munich today at 18:30 (CET).Hyppia also reckoned the Reds will miss the services of Van Dijk but remained confident another player could fill in his shoes.“Virgil [van Dijk] will be missed but I’m not too worried. That creates an opportunity for someone else to step up and take more responsibility. There are other players who can take his place.“We need to be very sharp from the off in the first game. Ideally, you want a lead to take over to Munich.“I know Bayern quite well and I think their weakness is in defending counter-attacks. We aren’t that bad at counter-attacks and I can see us scoring a few goals against Bayern in that manner over the two legs.”🎵 Sunshine, l̶o̶l̶l̶i̶p̶o̶p̶s̶ ̶a̶n̶d̶ ̶r̶a̶i̶n̶b̶o̶w̶s̶ ☀️We’ll take it! 😎#packmas #FCAFCB pic.twitter.com/NWIaiEcNSQ— FC Bayern English (@FCBayernEN) February 13, 2019Bayern have struggled domestically this season and sit five points adrift of league leaders Borussia Dortmund in the table.A win over Augsburg in the Bundesliga fixture later today would further reduce the gap before their trip to Anfield.last_img read more


Source Interlink names John Marriott Head of Business Intelligence Division

Posted On Sep 14 2019 by

first_imgAs media companies continue to expand, offering customers and advertising clients more options to buy and sell wares, the collection of consumer data grows as well. To harness this data across its portfolio of products, enthusiast publisher Source Interlink Media created an initiative called Business Intelligence. This division, which exists in the Media and Sales & Logistics divisions at SIM, was launched to offer advertisers a holistic view of their target consumers’ interests and buying habits, by better integrating various data sources in-house for more strategic monetization of consumer-based data.John Marriott, senior vice president and general manager of Motor Trend Auto Shows, is now heading up the initiative as Business Intelligence’s senior vice president. His duties with Motor Trend Auto Shows will remain the same as he takes on the role of working with the Business Intelligence teams. Marriott says this is an opportunity borne of Source’s ability to work with consumers over an extended cycle of interest growth and product purchasing, “We’re trying to latch together all that data about those touch points, to track people as they move through the purchase funnel, in order to compare the behaviors between our customers and start to spot emerging trends, rather than seeing things that happened.” For Marriott, the end goal is directly tied to the advertisers currently working with SIM, “We want to begin to be at a position to see things as they happen, and eventually be able to employ some predictive modeling that will enable us to look forward and to spot things, which we can then present to the manufacturers.”Working with chief technology officer Raghu Bala, Marriott will put together a team of data mining staffers, database developers and statisticians. He says his first staffer is set to start next week, and the team will continue to grow over time.“What I’m excited about is getting to the point where we can really start applying statistical analysis on this vast amount of data, so we can start predicting and seeing those predictions come true, both for our internal staff and our advertisers,” Marriott says. “If we can help them better understand what their customers are saying about their products, how they’re viewing them and comparing them to other products, I think that’s going to generate a lot of value.”last_img read more


Wilmington School Lunch Menus Week of June 9 2019

Posted On Sep 11 2019 by

first_imgWILMINGTON, MA — Below are the Wilmington Public Schools lunch menus for the week of June 9, 2019.Wilmington High School & Wilmington Middle SchoolMonday, June 10, 2019High School: ExamsMiddle School: French Toast Sticks with Syrup; Sausage Link; Hashbrowns; Fresh FruitTuesday, June 11, 2019High School: ExamsMiddle School: Chicken Patty or Spicy Chicken Patty on a Wholewheat Roll; Steamed Veggies; Fresh FruitWednesday, June 12, 2019Last Day Of School — NO LUNCHThursday, June 13, 2019No SchoolFriday, June 14, 2019No SchoolLunch ($2.65-$2.85) includes: Entree (main or alternative); Vegetable, Fruit or Juice and 8 oz. Assorted Lowfat Milk or Skim MilkAlternate Daily Lunch Choices at High School: Salad Bar, Pizza, Soup & Choice of SandwichAlternate Daily Lunch Choices at Middle School: Pre-made SaladAlso Available Daily: Variety of Fresh Fruit, Side Caesar salad or Baby Carrots, WG Bagel with Cheese StickMenus Subject To Occasional ChangeParticipates in The Farm-To-School ProgramWest Intermediate, North Intermediate, Shawsheen Elementary, Woburn Street ElementaryMonday, June 10, 2019French Toast Sticks with Syrup; Sausage Link; Hashbrowns; Baby Carrots; Fresh FruitTuesday, June 11, 2019Chicken Patty or Spicy Chicken Patty on a Wholewheat Roll; Steamed Veggies; Fresh FruitWednesday, June 12, 2019Last Day Of School — NO LUNCHThursday, June 13, 2019No SchoolFriday, June 14, 2019No SchoolLunch ($2.40) includes: Entree (Main or alternative); Vegetable, Fruit or Justice and MilkAlternate Daily Lunch Choices: Ham & Cheese, Turkey & Cheese, Tuna, Salad Bar (Woburn St. only), Premade Salads (North, West & Shawsheen only), Pizza (Mon & Wed only), Bagels (Tues & Thurs only)Also Available Daily: Assorted Lowfat Milk or Skim Milk; Assorted Fresh Fruit; Assorted Juice; DessertMenus Subject To Occasional ChangeParticipates in The Farm-To-School ProgramBoutwell Early Childhood Center & Wildwood Early Childhood CenterMonday, June 10, 2019French Toast Sticks with Syrup; Sausage Link; Hashbrowns; Baby Carrots; Fresh FruitTuesday, June 11, 2019Chicken Patty or Spicy Chicken Patty on a Wholewheat Roll; Steamed Veggies; Fresh FruitWednesday, June 12, 2019Last Day Of School — NO LUNCHThursday, June 13, 2019No SchoolFriday, June 14, 2019No SchoolLunch ($2.40) includes: Entree (main or alternative); Vegetable, Fruit or Juice and assorted lowfat or skim milkAlternate Daily Lunch Choices: WG Pizza (Mon. & Wed. only); Whole Wheat Bagel & Cheese Stick (Tues. & Thurs. only); Turkey & Cheese sandwich on WG bread (Mon., Wed., Fri. only); Ham & Cheese sandwich on WG bread (Tues. & Thurs. only)Also Available Daily: Assorted snacks and baked goods ($0.50-$0.60)Menus Subject To Occasional ChangeParticipates in The Farm-To-School Program(NOTE: View these menus, plus the Gluten Free menus, online HERE. The cover photo is from Jamie Boudreau’s Airgoz Aerial Photography.)Like Wilmington Apple on Facebook. Follow Wilmington Apple on Twitter. Follow Wilmington Apple on Instagram. Subscribe to Wilmington Apple’s daily email newsletter HERE. Got a comment, question, photo, press release, or news tip? Email wilmingtonapple@gmail.com.Share this:TwitterFacebookLike this:Like Loading… RelatedWilmington School Lunch Menus (Week of August 26, 2019)In “Education”Wilmington School Lunch Menus (Week of September 2, 2019)In “Education”Wilmington School Lunch Menus (Week of September 9, 2019)In “Education”last_img read more


Houston Astros Welcome Officers From Santa Fe ISD Police Department

Posted On Sep 2 2019 by

first_imgHouston Astros FB pageHouston Astros welcomed all 11 officers from the Santa Fe ISD Police Department on the field last night.The AstrosFoundation presented Chief Walter Braun with a 13 thousand dollar donation prior to the game.Santa Fe ISD police officer John Barnes was badly injured in the May 18th school shooting.The last report from UTMB listed Barnes in serious condition, and in the intensive care unit.Barnes is a retired Houston Police Officer. Sharelast_img


Former FARC Leaders Announce New Stage O

Posted On Aug 31 2019 by

first_img Jacobo Alape via YouTube by NPR News Sasha Ingber 8.29.19 4:45pm Top rebels from the Revolutionary Armed Forces of Colombia have announced a “new stage of fighting,” despite a peace accord that the leftist guerrilla group signed with the national government almost three years ago.In a 32-minute YouTube video posted Thursday, more than 20 armed fighters stood in green fatigues and in front of a sign that read, “As long as there is a will to fight there will be hope for victory.”A guerrilla leader involved in the peace negotiations accused the government of betraying key components of the deal. “The state has not fulfilled its most important obligation, which is to guarantee the life of its citizens and especially avoid assassinations for political reasons,” said Luciano Marin, known widely by his nom de guerre, Iván Márquez.Under the peace treaty, thousands of Marxist- and Leninist-inspired guerrillas gave up their arms in exchange for the Colombian government’s commitment to protecting them and to building infrastructure in poor, isolated communities in the countryside. In May, Marin said that it was a mistake for FARC fighters to surrender their weapons without first getting guarantees.In the video, which appeared to be filmed in the jungle, Marin said the group planned to work with the National Liberation Army (ELN), another leftist guerrilla army which has resorted to kidnapping, extortion and violence.Hours later, an ELN leader embraced the announcement. “Better late than never,” Omar Gómez, known as Uriel, said through a face mask after giving a thumbs up and a clenched fist.Former FARC commander Rodrigo Londoño, now the president of Colombia’s Revolutionary Alternative Common Force political party, reiterated his commitment to the peace accord. He said on Thursday that the majority support working toward peace. “Now more than ever, our commitment as a majority, as a party, as a country, is to peace, defending and complying with the agreement,” he said. “Anyone who strays away from peace is mistaken, as those who have always attacked it.”Negotiations to end Colombia’s longest war, tracing back to the 1960s, started in 2012. Former President Juan Manuel Santos and Londoño signed a peace agreement in 2016. The move triggered a new wave of violence from armed groups that fought to take control of the FARC’s territory, displacing thousands in rural communities. Colombians, in a narrow margin, had previously voted to reject a peace deal.Last year, Colombians elected President Iván Duque, who campaigned on a promise to revise the controversial peace deal. A conservative populist, he said the agreement was too lenient for rebels who had kidnapped Colombian citizens and committed other atrocities. He vowed to make “war victims the focal point of the peace process.”Since taking office, he’s been accused of not just slowing down peace reforms but muddling significant facets of the agreement — especially tribunals that would allow insurgents to testify under broad immunity.”We cannot be stupid enough to think that … the government is an ally for peace,” Naryi Vargas, a researcher at the Peace and Reconciliation Foundation, an organization based in Colombia, tweeted Thursday.Bogota-based activist Luis Ernesto Gómez blamed Duque and former Colombian President Álvaro Uribe for FARC’s announcement. “Their political calculations and systematic sabotage of the Peace Process robbed us of a golden opportunity to stop killing each other and start making progress.”The 52-year war waged by FARC left at least 220,000 people dead.Duque has not publicly responded to the FARC video, and the Colombian Embassy in the United States did not immediately respond to NPR’s request for comment.Copyright 2019 NPR. To see more, visit NPR. Former FARC Leaders Announce ‘New Stage Of Fighting,… last_img read more