Senator Iván Cepeda, the leading political ally of the FARC in Colombia, has filed a desperate petition in Colombian court to try to silence our public campaign in the United States. We have worked to raise awareness of Cepeda’s public statements and actions in support of Jesus Santrich and Iván Marquez, leaders of the terrorist FARC organization who are wanted by U.S. authorities for narco-terrorism and face criminal indictments before the U.S. Southern District of New York.
The following statement is attributed to The Honorable Connie Mack, former chairman of the U.S. House Foreign Affairs Subcommittee on the Western Hemisphere:
“Senator Iván Cepeda cannot silence a former member of the U.S. Congress from posing legitimate questions of grave concern to the people of the United States.
Cepeda’s panicked attempt to silence me speaks for itself.
In every question I have posed to him, I cited public documents from the U.S. judiciary, independent news organizations, and public statements made by Senator Cepeda himself. I also cited public statements by FARC terrorist guerrillas Jesus Santrich and Ivan Marquez, who are fugitives under U.S. criminal indictment and have declared themselves to be at war with the democratic government of Colombia.
Senator Cepeda, here are the objective facts:
- The FARC has been listed as a terrorist organization by the U.S. State Department since 1997.
- Santrich and Marquez are under criminal indictment in the Southern District of New York by two separate federal grand juries made up of ordinary American citizens for conspiracy to commit narco-terrorism with the FARC from the 1990s until the present day.
- You played a central, public role in assisting Santrich in avoiding extradition to the United States, something you have publicly said you did not regret. Your words and your actions, not mine.
- I have publicly posed objective questions directly to you about your association with these individuals and with the FARC. You have had ample time and space to reply in a public manner.
- You have said that my questions posed directly to you in a public manner were somehow meant to intimidate you. How could they be intimidating unless the answers might put you in serious legal jeopardy?
In the view of many, you have used Colombia’s courts as a weapon against anyone who attempts to publicly hold you to account. You should understand that such tactics will not work in the United States of America.
You appear to be desperate to silence me and to change the subject, but you can’t change the facts.
Your reaction only convinces me that I have come too close to the truth.”
The full text of Iván Cepeda’s desperate petition to silence our questions on his public actions and statements related to fugitive terrorist leaders of the FARC.