The United States has proudly supported Colombia’s Peace Accord since its signing in 2016. Colombia’s Peace Accord addresses conflict-related atrocities and abuses which took place over more than 50 years, through a Comprehensive System for Truth, Justice, Reparation, and Non-Repetition. This system relies on several transitional justice institutions that advance justice and accountability. In particular, the Special Jurisdiction for Peace (JEP) works to end impunity for conflict-related crimes. The JEP integrates reparative justice and acknowledgment with criminal prosecutions to ensure victims play a central role in all stages of the peace process.
Today, we are taking action to promote accountability for three former Colombian officials for their involvement in gross violations of human rights during Colombia’s decades-long internal armed conflict. The Department of State is designating former Colonel Publio Hernán Mejía Gutiérrez, former Colonel Juan Carlos Figueroa Suárez, and former General Iván Ramírez Quintero pursuant to Section 7031(c) of the Department of State, Foreign Operations, and Related Programs Appropriations Act, 2023. As a result of today’s action, Mejía Gutiérrez, Figueroa Suárez, and Ramírez Quintero are ineligible for entry into the United States. As part of this action, five of their family members are also being designated.
The United States commends the JEP for its vital work in support of conflict victims and survivors and will continue to work alongside Colombian and international partners to support the full implementation of the 2016 Peace Accord.