The Commander-in-Chief of the Revolutionary Armed Forces of Columbia, People’s Army (FARC-EP), Manuel Marulanda, has declared that his movement does not accept violence as the best way to find political solutions for lasting peace and prosperity in Columbia.
He accuses the government of Andres Pestrana of disrespecting the agreement signed at San Fransisco de la Sombra, establishing a period of negotiations between the two sides and implementing a demilitarised zone, by making unilateral changes to the government’s policy without negotiation.
This, declares Manuel Marulanda, is “unacceptable”. Either an agreement is made and adhered to, or it is not worth the paper it is written on. FARC have never threatened to break the peace process and continue to be oriented towards a discussed, political solution for the country.
The movement insists that the murderous terrorist activities undertaken by the fascist paramilitary groups be denounced and accuses the Colombian army (and indirectly its main supporter, the USA) of complicity in these activities. It is known that US mercenaries are active in the paramilitary groups, which carry out horrendous acts of tortures on civilians within the FARC-controlled areas to gain the movement a bad name.
Manuel Marulanda declares that “Pestrana should define whether or not we are terrorists” because if FARC is a terrorist organisation, as the USA claims, then the government should not negotiate with it. The Colombian President’s recent visit to the United States was obviously designed to attack FARC orally and to secure further military aid against the movement, which fights for social and political justice in Columbia, a country ruled by an oligarchy which holds the people down while a fraction of the population owns all the country’s wealth.
FARC declares that social justice movements, like itself, are repressed, their leaders are beaten up or killed and the movements themselves denounced as terrorist organisations. Manuel Marulanda concluded his message: “The normal functioning of the peace process depends on President Pestrana”.