At a Washington press conference on Tuesday, Uribe said Jorge Briceno,
alias Mono Jojoy, could walk free after surrendering, but insisted that
his government’s proposal was “not amnesty.”
“If Mono Jojoy hands
over the hostages and abandons the guerrilla, he will not have a
pardon, he will not have amnesty, but he will have freedom,” Uribe
said, offering what was presumed to be a form of suspended sentence.
president alluded to the case of former guerrilla Wilson Bueno Largo,
alias Isaza,” who surrendered in September after releasing kidnapped
congressman Oscar Lizcano. “Isaza is this very day holding
hands with his girlfriend on the Champs Elysees” in Paris, Uribe said.
Bueno was granted asylum by France in December.
Briceno is the
military chief of the Revolutionary Armed Forces of Colombia (FARC),
which has been fighting the government for more than 40 years. According
to Uribe, 13,500 members of the FARC surrendered to authorities in 2008
under his policy of “softening” their sentences for charges of
Uribe also rejected the latest FARC offer to negotiate an end to the long war, calling it a “sham.”
FARC leaders want to trick the country, and they talk about dialogue,
etcetera. The country has fallen for that sham many times before, but
we are not going to fall for it this time,” he said.
in the US capital to receive the Presidential Medal of Freedom from
President George W Bush, the nation’s highest civilian award. (DPA)