Skeptical of the conditions that incarcerated members of the FARC face in prisons around the country, the Colombians for Peace lead by ex-senator Piedad Cordoba asked for permission to interview the prisoners.
“This would humanize the conflict, ensure the implementation of international humanitarian law, and promote serious mediation instead of conflict,” said former senator Cordoba. The peace organization is mediating the on-going FARC hostage release operation and plays a fundamental role in conversations between the Colombian government and rebel groups.
Justice Minister Juan Carlos Esguerra authorized the “visit” with the sole condition that the peace organization “tell us in advance so that we can take appropriate measures to ensure the safety of the inmates and the visitors.”
In anticipation of any criticisms of the conditions in which the guerrillas are being held, Esguerra said, “the guerrilla prisoners are under the same conditions as other accused or convicted people who are deprived their liberty…the arrested guerrillas live in the same situation as other prisoners.”