Colombia Electoral Campaign Suspended

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Source: Resumen Latinoamericano / The Dawn News / February 9, 2018

The FARC Party denounces a plan to prevent their political participation in the elections with violence.

Earlier this morning the Alternative Revolutionary Force of the Common Party, FARC, announced on a press conference the suspension of their electoral campaign for the Presidency and the Congress of Colombia, as a response to the wave of violence against their candidates and headquarters by supporters of former President Álvaro Uribe and people identified as professional rioters.

Down below, the complete communiqué made by the National Political Council of FARC:

Communiqué

“The successive attacks carried out against the electoral campaign of the Alternative Revolutionary Force of the Common (FARC) in the departments of Quindío, Caquetá and Valle del Cauca —which left people injured, including two children, and caused material damages to vehicles and to a union headquarters— reveal the existence of a premeditated plan to prevent the political participation of our legally-constituted party, after a peace agreement that put an end to an armed conflict that has lasted over half a century and that began precisely due to the levels of intolerance, political exclusion and partisan violence.

Furthermore, our militants are being threatened, targeted and followed, as violent messages fill social networks, along with pictures where the attackers are clearly identifiable. These include regional leaders of the Democratic Center party, along with paid henchmen like Mr. Gustavo Muñoz. Their level of impunity is shocking.

The right to protest can’t be invoked to justify these actions, which are typified as crimes in Colombia’s Criminal Code. Therefore, we will bring all of the evidence to court so that justice punishes those responsible for these actions.

To this adds that last February 6 our comrade Kevin Andrés Lugo Jaramillo, known as Julián Morales, was murdered in the Puerto Guamo vereda of the Montecristo municipality. It appears that the authors are guerrillas of the Guillermo Ariza Front of the National Liberation Army (ELN).

We send our condolences to his family, comrades and friends, and we demand the National Government to enforce the guarantees for the political exercise of the FARC, in equal conditions with other parties and movements that partake in the current elections.

We also express our solidarity with the parties and candidates that have suffered any form of obstruction or threat in the development of the campaign, which we vehemently reject. Colombia can’t turn into an electorally failed state due to the actions of the enemies of peace.

For the time being, we have decided to suspend campaign activities until we have enough guarantees.

We call all parties and political movements, with no exception, to pronounce themselves in rejection to this sort of provocations and we invite them to join us in a summit to agree upon fair game rules for the ongoing campaign, overcoming verbal aggression and physical violence.

We advise all of our militants, friends and sympathizers to avoid falling for provocations, to remain calm and to focus on the development of internal meetings that allow us to strengthen our proposals for the country.

To the countries that oversee the Peace Agreement, to the Second Mission of the United Nations and to the entire national community: we request your support to enforce our reincorporation to the political life, after we deposed the arms we had taken up due to the intolerance and the exclusion that has always been a part of the Colombian political system.

To the entire nation, we repeat our commitment with the consolidation of peace with social justice, true democracy and sovereignty.

February 9, 2018
National Political Council
Alternative Revolutionary Force of the Common
FARC

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