Colombia’s FARC rebel group directed strongly-worded criticism Wednesday at the country’s Inspector General, calling his power “spurious” and “absolute.”
The accusations came from FARC representative Seusis Pausivas, alias “Jesus Santrich,” at a press conference during ongoing peace talks between the guerrillas and the Colombian government in Havana, Cuba.
Santrich was responding to a question regarding a petition sent by Inspector General Alejandro Ordoñez to the International Penal Court in the Hague, which called on the court to intervene in the event that a so-called “impunity” clause for the guerrillas emerges in any potential peace deal.
Official declarations have repeatedly claimed that no such clause is currently being negotiated, but the subject continues to be a lightning rod for Colombia’s political right, which has come out against the peace process since before formal talks began last November.
The FARC and Ordoñez have clashed publicly in the past, with the FARC calling Ordoñez “a false priest of public morality” and accusing him of “a gross distortion” of his public office.
Ordoñez, meanwhile, has frequently lashed out against Colombia’s oldest rebel group, criticizing a compromise made last month during peace talks that will reportedly grant the FARC some form of access to political representation.
“It is a barbarity that we are opening this door saying that the FARC are not condemned of crimes against humanity,” said Ordoñez. “The FARC will be an armed political party.”
Inspector General Ordoñez, a staunch Catholic-conservative, is a controversial figure in Colombia, with strident and outspoken anti-gay and anti-abortion views.
Ordoñez has been accused previously of overstepping his public role by absolving members of congress convicted of collusion with paramilitary organizations, and is currently under investigation for libel, slander, and abuse of authority, among other charges.
Despite loud opposition from Ordoñez and figured such as ex-Colombian President Alvaro Uribe, talks with the FARC recently completed entered their second year of progress. The delegations are currently discussing solutions to drug trafficking, the third of six planned negotiation topics, and have continued to ganer international support as progress continues.
A comprehensive deal would mean a formal end to one of the key fronts in an armed conflict that has gripped Colombia for over half a century.
- Farc arremeten contra el Procurador Ordóñez (El Espectador)