A Colombian Liberal senator is pushing to extend the scope of the Victims Law to include those affected by violence in the internal conflict since 1985, El Espectador reported Wednesday.
Senator Juan Fernando Cristo announced that he will insist on the extension of the bill, which currently only governs compensation for victims of violence committed since 1991, and has begun working on the initiative.
The senator said that not providing compensation for victims before 1991 is “exclusionary, arbitrary and [it is] not worth working on such a sensitive issue [only] to exclude many victims. That date will delegitimize the project.”
If the senator is successful in extending the bill’s scope to 1985, it would thereby include for debate in Congress the Palace of Justice siege in that same year, where there were over 20 civilians deaths attributed to the army.
The current bill, which was passed by the House of Representatives in December, still needs to go through several stages in order to be enshrined in law.
The original proposal included victims from 1985, and the change in the start date drew criticism from numerous sources.