Former commanders of the now disbanded Farc insurgent group in Colombia have for the primary time issued an apology for the kidnappings they carried out in the course of the armed battle.
A fee investigating crimes dedicated throughout 52 years of violence has promised extra lenient sentences to those that admit wrongdoing.
Eight commanders known as the kidnappings an “extraordinarily grave mistake” and acknowledged the ache they’d brought on.
A peace deal was signed in 2016.
Hundreds of individuals have been kidnapped by the Revolutionary Armed Forces of Colombia (Farc) insurgent group over the a long time. Some have been freed after ransom was paid, others have been held for years, typically chained to bushes, and a few have been killed or died in captivity.
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Eight former senior Farc commanders signed the assertion wherein they requested all of these they’d kidnapped and their households for forgiveness.
“We now perceive the ache we brought on so many households – sons, daughters, fathers, moms, and mates – who lived via hell ready for information of their family members, questioning in the event that they have been wholesome and beneath which circumstances they have been held, stored aside from their affection, from their initiatives, from their world,” the assertion reads.
The assertion singled out the case of Andrés Felipe Pérez, a 12-year-old boy who had terminal most cancers and who begged the Farc to launch his father Norberto Pérez, a police corporal they’d kidnapped in March 2000.
Footage of the boy pleading to be allowed to see his father one final time was broadcast on TV and have become one of the crucial heart-wrenching photos of the armed battle, which lasted from 1964 to 2016. A whole bunch of Colombians have been so moved by his destiny that they supplied to enter insurgent captivity in change for the boy’s father.
The Farc refused, saying they might solely launch Norberto Pérez if certainly one of their jailed leaders was freed, a requirement the federal government refused.
Andrés Felipe Pérez died in December 2001 with out having seen his father once more. Norberto Pérez was shot lifeless 4 months later by the Farc whereas attempting to flee after greater than two years in captivity.
The Farc assertion mentioned ignoring the pleas of Andrés Felipe Pérez now made them really feel ashamed and was “like a dagger in our hearts”.
“We won’t give the victims the time again that we stole from them, nor undo the ache and the humiliations we inflicted upon them, we will solely reiterate our dedication to being held accountable earlier than the justice system,” the assertion reads.
What is the background?
The signatories included Rodrigo Londoño, higher identified beneath his nom de guerre Timochenko, who was the Farc’s prime chief when the rebels entered into peace negotiations with the federal government which finally led to the signing of a peace accord in 2016.
He and the seven different signatories are actually members of the Farc political celebration, which they shaped after they laid down their arms.
Crimes dedicated by all sides in Colombia’s armed battle are being handled by the Particular Jurisdiction for Peace (JEP), a transitional courtroom system arrange as a part of the peace deal.
The JEP goals to convey to mild all of the crimes dedicated in the course of the battle and to that impact presents extra lenient sentences to those that admit their crimes up entrance.
It has not been with out controversy as many Colombians argued it let the rebels off calmly for the atrocities they dedicated whereas others argue that it’s the solely method for the reality about many crimes to emerge and for reconciliation
Whereas most of its prime commanders signed the peace deal, there are a considerable variety of former Farc rebels who opposed the peace deal and who shaped dissident teams.
In lots of rural elements of Colombia, these dissident teams proceed to have interaction in drug trafficking, extortion and homicide.
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