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Viewing cable 06BOGOTA11125, EX-PARAS SAY PEACE PROCESS OVER, BUT DIVISIONS

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Reference ID Created Released Classification Origin
06BOGOTA11125 2006-12-07 22:10 2011-02-20 12:12 CONFIDENTIAL Embassy Bogota
VZCZCXYZ0000
PP RUEHWEB

DE RUEHBO #1125/01 3412248
ZNY CCCCC ZZH
P 072248Z DEC 06
FM AMEMBASSY BOGOTA
TO RUEHC/SECSTATE WASHDC PRIORITY 1298
INFO RUEHBR/AMEMBASSY BRASILIA 7304
RUEHCV/AMEMBASSY CARACAS 8499
RUEHLP/AMEMBASSY LA PAZ DEC LIMA 4552
RUEHZP/AMEMBASSY PANAMA 9811
RUEHQT/AMEMBASSY QUITO 5211
RUEHGL/AMCONSUL GUAYAQUIL 3793
RUEAIIA/CIA WASHDC
RUEAWJA/DEPT OF JUSTICE WASHDC
RHEFDIA/DIA WASHDC
RHEHOND/DIRONDCP WASHDC
RUEKJCS/JOINT STAFF WASHDC
RHEHNSC/NSC WASHDC
RUEKJCS/SECDEF WASHDC
C O N F I D E N T I A L BOGOTA 011125 
 
SIPDIS 
 
SIPDIS 
 
E.O. 12958: DECL: 12/07/2016 
TAGS: KJUS PGOV PINR PREL PTER CO
SUBJECT: EX-PARAS SAY PEACE PROCESS OVER, BUT DIVISIONS 
APPEAR IN RANKS; GOC REMAINS FIRM ON JUSTICE PHASE 
 
 
Classified By: Political Counselor John S. Creamer. 
Reasons: 1.4 (b) and (d) 
 
------- 
Summary 
------- 
 
1.  (C) On December 6, a spokesman for 59 ex-paramilitary 
leaders said the peace process with the GOC was over, in 
response to the GOC's alleged failure to comply with its 
peace process commitments.  Still, the GOC insisted the 
process was on track.  Sergio Caramagna, Director of the 
Mission to Support the Peace Process in Colombia (MAPP/OAS), 
told us on December 7 the ex-paras were divided into two 
groups, with a more moderate group committed to work with the 
GOC.  The ex-paras have not threatened violence, and national 
police officials told us they doubt the ex-paras have the 
capacity to engage in large-scale disturbances.  End summary. 
 
-------------------------------------------- 
Paramilitaries Announce End of Peace Process 
-------------------------------------------- 
 
2.  (C) Spokesman Ivan Roberto Duque (AKA "Ernesto Baez") 
announced on December 6 that 59 ex-paramilitary leaders had 
called off the peace process in response to the GOC's alleged 
failure to comply with commitments made during GOC-AUC 
negotiations.  The immediate trigger for the para 
announcement was President Uribe's order to transfer the 59 
from "La Ceja" detention center to the Itagui 
maximum-security prison in Antioquia Department on December 
1.  Uribe said his decision reflected concerns that the paras 
were planning to escape from the facility, as well as reports 
that they had ordered murders from La Ceja.  The 
paramilitaries' announcement followed Peace Commissioner Luis 
Carlos Restrepo's December 6 visit to Itagui to confirm the 
GOC's continued commitment to the peace process.  Instead, 
Restrepo was greeted by a tense atmosphere and was only able 
to speak for five minutes as the paramilitaries left the room 
one by one. 
 
3.  (C) After the meeting, Baez said the only two 
interlocutors the AUC would recognize were an opposition 
party, the Polo Democratico, and Congress's Chamber of 
Representatives Peace Commission.  Polo Democratico Senator 
Gustavo Petro said he did not consider such a role to be 
appropriate for the Polo, and urged the paras to tell the 
truth to judicial authorities.  Still, if the GOC thought it 
necessary for the Polo to "play that role," the Party would 
do so.  Meanwhile, the Chamber of Representatives Peace 
Commission will visit the paramilitary leaders in Itagui on 
December 11. 
 
4.  (C) MAPP/OAS Director Sergio Caramagna, who attended 
Restrepo's meeting with the paras, told us on December 7 that 
the peace process was in critical condition, but he hoped it 
could still be saved.  Caramagna said the paras were divided 
into two groups, with a hard-line group led by Baez calling 
for an end to talks and a more moderate group trying to 
preserve the process.  The second group had approached 
Caramagna to find a common ground to overcome the crisis.  He 
said the Church and Antioquia's Peace Facilitator Commission 
could play important roles in the effort to end the impasse. 
 
 
------------------------------------ 
GOC Responds with More Determination 
------------------------------------ 
 
5.  (C) Restrepo and Minister of Interior and Justice Carlos 
Holguin publicly reiterated the GOC's commitment to the para 
process on December 7, but President Uribe warned the former 
AUC leaders that whomever takes up arms again would be 
extradited.  The President's statement responded to rumors 
that the former leaders and supporters would resort to 
violence.  Uribe said the first phase of the peace process 
was over; now it was time apply the Justice and Peace Law 
 
(JPL).  He called for the suspension of presidential Decree 
2898, which provided a six-month timetable (until February 
17th, 2007) for the ex-paras to ratify their intention to 
participate under the JPL.  By suspending the ratification 
requirement, Uribe hoped to remove a legal obstacle to the 
taking of para confessions (version libres) by the Fiscalia 
under the JPL. 
 
------------------------ 
Use of Truth or Violence 
------------------------ 
 
7.  (C) Media reports stated the paras have been using the 
threat of telling the truth about all of their sponsors and 
collaborators, but have refrained, at least publicly, from 
calling for violence.  The GOC has repeatedly encouraged the 
former AUC leaders to tell the truth, and in the meeting in 
Itagui, Caramagna told us Restrepo called on them to do so. 
National Police Intelligence analysts said the former leaders 
no longer have organized military structures big enough to 
become a significant threat, but could encourage minor 
disturbances, such as roadblocks and other smaller 
demonstrations. 
DRUCKER 

=======================CABLE ENDS============================