Top Story — Colombia’s government and FARC rebels announced on Thursday their intention to form a truth commission, a major sign of progress in the ongoing peace process, which has faced difficulties in recent months.
The findings of the truth commission, which would be convened in the event of a successful conclusion to the peace negotiations, would not be admissible in court, the BBC reported.
Both the FARC and the government have been accused of human rights violations during the conflict, which began in 1964. Since peace talks began in 2012 in Havana, Cuba, the two sides have reached an agreement on three out of five agenda items.
The announcement of the plans for the truth commission comes after a wave of violence between the government forces and the FARC. The government resumed its campaign of aerial bombardment in April after an ambush by FARC rebels killed at least 10 soldiers, an apparent violation of the group’s own unilateral ceasefire. A month later, a top FARC commander, and negotiator in the peace talks, was killed in a bombing raid.
Headlines from the Western Hemisphere
- In a landmark case, New York state’s appeals court decided to grant a license to practice law to César Vargas, an undocumented immigrant who moved to the United States as a child.
- A spike in cartel violence leading up to midterm elections in Mexico has left at least seven candidates dead and forced another 20 to drop out of the race.
- The former vice president of FIFA Jack Warner, one of 14 people indicted on several counts of corruption last week, said in two separate video messages on Thursday that he will disclose an “avalanche” of secret information, and that he feared for his life.
- In an essay that pays tribute to his father, former Major League Baseball player Adrian Cárdenas delves into the complexities of straddling two cultures, of his father’s longing to leave Cuba and the one passion shared across decades between the United States and Cuba: baseball.
- The lawyer defending former Guatemalan President and army general Efraín Ríos Montt against genocide charges for his connection to mass killing of indigenous people during the country’s civil war was shot at least 12 times and killed by gunmen outside of Guatemala City.
- Panama’s former Vice President Felipe Virzi was detained Wednesday while prosecutors investigate his alleged corruption regarding an uncompleted and expensive irrigation project.
- The Nation magazine published a profile of Ecuadorian President Rafael Correa, analyzing why he is “one of Latin America’s most popular leaders.”
- Thousands protested in Argentina, Chile and Uruguay against femicide following recent cases of domestic violence against women that have captured the attention of women’s rights groups.