Former president Alvaro Uribe‘s supporters, the “Uribistas,” warned that the Colombian government has left the door open for pardons and amnesties by not putting the 2005 Justice and Peace Law on the table during peace talks.
The peace talks currently under way in the Norwegian capital Oslo are operating under the framework for peace rather than the 2005 Justice and Peace Law that is applied to paramilitary groups. Congress already promised that the FARC will not face prison sentences in exchange for peace, except those “most responsible” for human rights abuses.
Senator Juan Carlos Velez stated on Friday that this decision means many members of the FARC will “not end up in jail…[the framework for peace] promotes a pardon…which has been criticized by Human Rights Watch.”
The framework has indeed been criticized by politicians and human rights groups alike because it potentially allows persons responsible for egregious crimes to not only escape jail time, but also be elected to public office.
Senate President Roy Barreras justified the framework saying, “It is possible that in exchange for peace some members of the FARC would not go to prison. The peace framework allows for the application of transitional justice and alternative mechanisms for justice that can allow for the suspension of penalties, and the eventual political participation of the combatants, excluding those responsible for crimes against humanity.”
In a Senate plenary session, the legislature proposed expanding the Justice and Peace law to incorporate members of the FARC, but it was defeated 42 to 9.