Mr. Shafik Handal served as the leader of El Salvador's opposition Farabundo Marti para la Liberacion Nacional (FMLN) until his death in 2006. Prior to FMLN, he was the head of the Partido Communista Salvadoreno (PCS) in 1972. In 1980, PCS joined with four other leftist groups to form FMLN as one united party. Mr. Handal led the communist faction of the coalition until it became a political party in 1992. He was one of the signatories of the Peace Accords which ended the twelve-year Salvadoran Civil War.
In this interview, conducted on 19 June 1997, Mr. Handal discussed the negotiations that took place prior to the signing of the 1992 Peace Accords that ended the Civil War. He described the peace process, the role the United Nations played as a mediator in these talks and the effectiveness of the United Nations Observer Mission in El Salvador (ONUSAL).