Mediator Henry Acosta was key in starting a peace process with Colombia’s largest rebel group and was used by both former President Alvaro Uribe and President Juan Manuel Santos, a communist journalist revealed on Tuesday.
Journalist Carlos Lozano, editor-in-chief of Communist magazine Voz, said that Acosta was not only the mediator during former president Alvaro Uribe’s attempts at peace talks with the FARC rebel group, but also for President Juan Manuel Santos in achieving the current peace process underway in Havana, Cuba.
Last week, Semana columnist Daniel Coronell revealed that Uribe, an opponent of ongoing peace talks with the FARC, himself sought a negotiated end to the armed conflict with Colombia’s largest rebel group.
Under Uribe, Acosta was used to rely Uribe’s proposal to enter peace negotiations to his long time university friend and FARC commander “Pablo Catatumbo.” Catatumbo was expected to send the message to former FARC leader Alfonso Cano. Acosta was essential in ensuring that the peace process did not break down when a military operation killed Cano in 2011.
Catatumbo is currently on the FARC’s peace delegation.
Profile: Pablo Catatumbo
Lozano stated he always knew of Acosta’s role but is making his knowledge public now because his friend’s life may now be in danger.
“Henry Acosta is a good man, with noble ideals and he is a friend of peace. He assumed an opportunity at peace under ex-president Uribe, who then wanted Acosta to establish a demilitarized zone with no presence of the army and now whines that he wants to hand the country over to the guerrillas. So, for this reason I decided to talk and of course, i think that Henry is in danger because there is a lot of intolerance and enemies of peace that act with criminal intentions,” explained Lozano, according to La FM Radio.
Lozano made a call that the government take measures to ensure the safety and wellbeing of Acosta.