Former Colombian insurgent leaders acknowledge position in kidnappings
A bunch of former leaders of the Revolutionary Armed Forces of Colombia mentioned on Tuesday that the guerrilla group was chargeable for battle crimes, together with the kidnapping of hundreds of civilians for ransom and likewise holding politicians as hostages for a number of years within the hopes of exchanging them for imprisoned rebels.
The former FARC leaders acknowledged their position in these crimes throughout a listening to held by the Special Jurisdiction for Peace, a tribunal created following a 2016 peace deal between the FARC rebels and the Colombian authorities.
The peace tribunal is in command of investigating battle crimes dedicated throughout the 5 decade lengthy battle between the FARC and the Colombian authorities and discovering methods by which victims could be compensated.
Under the phrases of the peace deal, former combatants who collaborate with the tribunal can keep away from jail sentences however should take part in restorative justice schemes that will probably be decided by the particular peace tribunal together with victims.
The peace tribunal says that thus far, it has registered greater than 3,000 individuals as victims of kidnappings performed by the FARC, earlier than the group demobilized in 2016, though the variety of whole victims may exceed 20,000, based on databases compiled by human rights teams.
In Tuesday’s listening to, Rodrigo Londoño, the FARC’s final commander, mentioned that the kidnappings have been sanctioned for years by leaders of the insurgent group, who solely required that hostages not be killed with out their approval. Londoño admitted that some hostages suffered from inhumane therapy that included being tied with chains to timber, or being held inside barbed wire fences. He additionally mentioned that some feminine hostages suffered from sexual abuse.
“In the name of our revolutionary ideals we committed war crimes and crimes against humanity” the previous FARC chief mentioned. “For years we condemned hundreds of human beings to live in inhumane conditions and to suffering that had a lot of impact on their families.”
The listening to was attended by seven former insurgent leaders who have been a part of the FARC’s final secretariat. Sitting throughout the room have been 5 kidnapping survivors who demanded that the previous rebels disclose extra particulars on a number of excessive profile instances, together with the 2002 kidnapping of 12 members of the Valle del Cauca state meeting, who have been held as hostages for 5 years.
In 2007, eleven of these hostages have been executed by their captors in a distant jungle camp in circumstances which can be nonetheless unclear.
Sigifredo Lopez was the one hostage who was not executed. He addressed the previous insurgent leaders throughout the listening to, and mentioned he wished to know who helped the FARC to kidnap the political leaders.
“The sons and daughters of my colleagues want to know who are the people who shot them,” he added. “There are people who have not been able to grieve over the bodies of their brothers or their parents.”