This week, Republican Senator Ted Cruz introduced a bill to recategorize the FARC (Revolutionary Armed Forces of Colombia) as an international terrorist organization and list it with the Treasury Department as a Specially Designated Global Terrorist (SDGT).
In 2021, the Biden administration withdrew FARC’s designation as a Foreign Terrorist Organization (FTO) and Specially Designated Global Terrorist (SDGT). After that, Treasury removed 275 individuals and entities associated with the FARC from the OFAC Special Office of Foreign Assets Control (OFAC).
This bill promoted by Senator Ted Cruz and Marco Rubio would re-impose the designation of the FARC as terrorists and orders that the identity and involvement of five people who were associated with the FARC be investigated: alias Fabián Ramírez, alias Jimmy Guerrero, alias Rubén Zamora, alias Julián Conrado and Rodrigo Granda. It also seeks the addition to this list of two more names of people who had not been previously sanctioned: elected senator Piedad Córdoba and congresswoman Sandra Ramírez Lobo, widow of former FARC leader Manuel Marulanda Vélez.
The bill details that “By withdrawing the FARC group designation, the Administration relinquished a key tool through which the U.S. held those individuals accountable for a half-century of armed conflict.
As a consequence of the Havana Agreement, signed between former President Juan Manuel Santos and the FARC guerrillas, several guerrillas, including bloodthirsty FARC leaders, remained unpunished and even today are part of the Colombian Congress. Congressmen such as Luis Antonio Lozada and Pablo Catatumbo still appear on the State Department’s web page, which has offered million-dollar rewards for information leading to their capture.
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Senator Cruz’s effort is critical to Colombia’s security as well as that of the United States. Colombia has historically been the United States’ main ally in the region, and losing that relationship would be a major setback in the fight against terrorism and drug trafficking.
Vanessa Vallejo. Co-editor-in-chief of El American. Economist. Podcaster. Political and economic analysis of America. Colombian exile in the United States // Vanessa Vallejo. Co-editora en jefe de El American. Economista. Podcaster. Análisis político y económico de América. Colombiana exiliada en EE. UU.