A Colombian humanitarian agency found “multiple” Human remains at a site on the border with Venezuela that had been identified by a former commander of the dissolved right-wing paramilitaries, the peace court announced.
Following instructions from the Colombian-Italian Salvatore Mancuso, who is serving a sentence of almost 16 years in prison in the United States for drug trafficking, the state Unit for the Search for Persons Deemed Missing (UBPD), located the bodies in the municipality of Juan Cold, less than a kilometer from Venezuela.
“They went to the territory and, in an outpost, found that there are remains in that place,” Roberto Vidal, president of the Special Jurisdiction for Peace (JEP), a court that judges the worst crimes of the Colombian conflict.
“With this preliminary information, they will begin a detailed investigation to try to identify the corpses”; added the head of the JEP, created after the historic 2016 peace agreement with the FARC guerrilla, like the UBPD.
Vidal did not specify how many bodies would be buried in the surroundings of Juan Frío, but he assured that it is “multiple remains”.
Mancuso laid down his arms in 2006 as part of a peace agreement with former President Álvaro Uribe (2002-2010) but was unexpectedly handed over to the US authorities before completing the surrender process in Colombia. Since then, he has denounced ill-treatment and torture to prevent him from telling the truth about the relations between important politicians and paramilitaries.
Imprisoned in the state of Georgia and through a videoconference asked a few weeks ago for “help”.
According to Vidal, the former commander of the United Self-Defense Forces of Colombia (AUC) has already indicated “some coordinates on the other side of the border” where these remains would be found.
On Monday the UBPD announced that “advancing with the diplomatic management for the development of the cross-border search”. The entity estimates that some 100,000 people were victims of forced disappearance in the midst of the armed conflict that has bled Colombia dry for six decades. A number greater than those of the combined dictatorships of Argentina, Brazil, and Chile in the 20th century.
In their bloody firefight against the insurgency, the AUC sowed terror with massacres and persecuted politicians,