Thursday, June 8, 2023

Paramilitary supported presidential candidacy: Mancuso

After giving information, mostly already reported in other judicial precedents, that Convivir was a front to allow the expansion and strengthening of the United Self-Defense Forces of Colombia (AUC) in the country, and paramilitaries How were joint operations carried out between and public forces. Former paramilitary chief Salvatore Mancuso attends the third single truth hearing this Monday, called by the Special Jurisdiction for Peace (JEP), in which he has the last opportunity to enter this transitional justice. On the occasion, the former chief of the paramilitary forces is expected to speak about the alliances that were built between the paramilitary forces, officers, civilians and members of the public force.

During the first day of the hearing on Wednesday, May 10, the former paramilitary leader explained how the relationship between Convivir and the public forces was established. In the midst of this, he referred to the influence of political factions in various regions of the country to promote paramilitary forces and mentioned, as he has done on other occasions, that the AUC was mainly supported by the Gneko political clan in Cesar. was received George Gneko Sercher, who, in addition to holding public office in the department, was part of the paramilitary structure. He was also assassinated by the same criminal group in August 2001.

The next day, Thursday 11 May, Mancuso again appeared before the JEP in an audience and told how Venezuelan politicians and generals had proposed the Self-Defense Forces to stage a coup against Hugo Chávez, the then president of that country and now deceased, and told how the alleged false demonetisation of EPL guerrillas happened.

Postobone reportedly paid AUC 10 million pesos per month

During the diligence, Mancuso also referred to the ties he had with the self-defense forces of several companies in the country in order to achieve their consolidation. First of all, he mentioned the Fadegan and Córdoba Livestock Funds. He said he had several meetings with the former president of the cattle company, Jorge Visbal, and Fedegan’s manager, Rodrigo Garcia. These were also attended by the convicted ex-Justice Minister Sabas Pretelt, according to the former paramilitary. “At those meetings, Dr. George Visbal requested the presence of the Self-Defense Forces (…) The same happened with the issue of traders and transporters.”

Regarding Ecopetrol, Mancuso said that this company informed him about the type of fuel being pumped and the days on which it was being done and allowed to dispense fuel. He said this was agreed upon with high-level officials, but did not give names.

About Bavaria he said that he received payment and in return this company was able to distribute its products to areas where the Self-Defense Forces were present. The same situation happened with the postbone, Mancuso said. He said he paid 10 million pesos a month, which was a straightforward agreement, but did not give any names and promised that he would deliver it in the future.

Noticing Mancuso’s attitude, magistrate Pedro Diaz reminded him that he would have to provide new elements if he wanted to be accepted by the JEP. “I’m going to ask you, please, that you teach the facts and the people’s final knowledge. The appeals section has indicated certain conditions for the information you provide to be effective at this time, let us know that You know more about it. It is important so that the subchamber can study the JEP’s submission”, explained the magistrate.

“We interfered in the 2002 Congress elections”, Mancuso

During the proceedings, Salvatore Mancuso reiterated information given in Justice and Peace, a free edition, that the Self-Defense Forces supported the presidential candidacy of Horacio Serpa, who ran three times as a candidate, but was elected. did not go, (1998), 2002 and 2006); Andrés Pastrana, President of the Republic from 1998 to 2002, and Álvaro Uribe, President of the country between 2002 and 2010.

“For these elections, also in 2002, and this is something important to know because it happened not only at the regional level, but also at the national level, the Self-Defense Forces directly intervened in the congressional elections on March 10, 2002, and directly in May Even in the U.S. presidential elections,” Mancuso explained.

During his statement, Mancuso also reiterated that all politicians had to enter into an agreement with the Self-Defense Forces in order to operate in the region. Politicians he mentioned included convicts Miguel Alfonso de la Asprilla, Mario Salomón Nadar, Juan Manuel Cabrales and Julio Manzore.

Following an act by two women victims of the Las Brisas massacre that took place on March 11, 2000, who interpreted a lumbalu describing the carnage and displacement of which they were victims, Mancuso acknowledged that both Joint operations were carried out between military forces and paramilitaries, and that on several occasions when paramilitaries committed murders, they took refuge in both the police and military base in Tierralta, Córdoba. It is true that we shared intelligence. It is true that we were mixed in similar operations in Tierradentro, and it is true that I was the one who surrounded me with the population, entered their houses and ate everything they had.

Shortly thereafter, Mancuso noted the actions of paramilitaries in Norte de Santander. He confessed to coordinating with the police and military forces in several massacres in that area of ​​the country in 1999. He snubbed General Fernando Ro Cuervo (deceased) and Colonel Victor Matamoros, but when questioned about the new names, said he would do it in private.

He said the same thing when asked about the Arro massacre, carried out on October 22, 1997 by paramilitaries of the mining block of the United Self-Defense Forces of Colombia.

Nation World News Desk
Nation World News Desk
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