Posted by: Paula Delgado-Kling | May 9, 2013

I propose a truth commission for crimes committed by the FARC to go hand-in-hand with any peace deal.

The Santos administration hopes to set up a truth commission in which paramilitaries vouch to confess their past crimes and never to repeat them, and in return, their legal troubles will take second stage.

There have been 2870 unionists killed in Colombia in the last 25 years, and their loved ones are proposing to create a truth commission to uncover the violence committed against unionists. In about 77.9 percent of cases of violence against unionists, it is still unknown who is responsible.

In turn, I propose that as part of the negotiations with the FARC, there is a truth commission set up to shed light on the crimes committed by the FARC. It seems that in the direction the Havana talks are going, neither the victims of the FARC nor the general Colombian public will get much of a say on the outcome of a political negotiation. So why not investigate the truth of what the FARC thugs have done? Colombia deserves to know. … before the FARC thugs become political players.

Why was there never a proper truth commission when the M-19 demobilized? Former M-19 member Gustavo Petro is now the major of Bogota, and what crimes was he responsible for a few decades back? Further, Navarro Wolff was the second-in-command of the M-19 and led the M-19’s take-over of the Palace of Justice –which the Inter-American Court of Human Rights called a holocaust and a massacre. After demobilizing, Wolff has gone on to become a senator, a governor and even a minister of health, but what crimes did he personally commit when in the M-19?

How are Colombians supposed to move forward if those who commit crimes are simply given amnesty and there are no legal consequences to their actions? The people who commit crimes and are given amnesty go on to occupy the country’s leadership position, but what will be the legacy of this? What does this say about Colombia?

To give amnesty without legal consequences — as may well happen in the current case of the FARC —  is to send forth the message to the Bacrim and other emerging gangs that trafficking drugs and terrorizing the population, and pressuring the government into a peace negotiation will eventually lead to social and political mobility.

Recommended:

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Related:

Peace accords with FARC likely to be a tough sell to a disapproving public.

More information from government would facilitate and legitimize peace process, and strengthen role of media.

The absence of women at the negotiating table is shocking.

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Responses

  1. I agree with your whole view point on this. The government has no right to deny justice to victims of crime.


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