"Timochenko" in letter to the pope: former terrorist group wants to renounce any expression of hatred or violence - Pope trip "will leave a deep impression on Colombia's history"
Bogota (kath.net/KAP) The leader of the Colombian ex-guerrilla FARC, Rodrigo Londono Echeverry, has asked Pope Francis for forgiveness in a letter for the suffering that his organization caused in more than 50 years of civil war. "Your repeated references to God's infinite mercy make me plead for forgiveness for any tears or pain that we have inflicted upon the Columbian people or its citizens," wrote the "Maximo Lider" in a Friday, in the Colombian media, to the Pope, who is still in the South American country until Sunday.
Londono alias "Timochenko" or "Timoleon Jimenez" apologized for not being able to meet the pope personally for health reasons. He assured him, however, that the FARC wanted "to deny any expression of hatred or violence" and had the firm intention to forgive all those who were their enemies so far. "We feel the repentance needed to see our own mistakes and to ask for forgiveness for all the victims of our actions," the opposition politician said.
The basic intention of his grouping was a good one, "Timochenko" emphasized that justice was being sought for the excluded and persecuted of Colombia, as well as the overcoming of inequality and disadvantages. "We are dreaming that you and your father will understand us," the party leader now told Francis. He expressed his happiness and gratitude for the Pope's comments, according to which the exploitation of poor countries by rich people was just as displeasing as the rejection of diversity, or the contempt for human dignity by striving for profit.
Lodino's admiration for Francis was expressed in the most direct terms. "Since you took the first step into my country, I feel that something will finally change," says the Marxist leader. The pope is leaving a deep impression in the country's history, mobilizing all sections of the population and giving them a message, and shows the "tears of the emotion of men, women and children who admire your smile, your goodness and the splendor in your eyes. Only a saint like you does that," wrote Lodono, who also compared the pope with his surname Francis of Assisi and Jesus.
The FARC had agreed to sign the peace treaty with the Colombian government, but some members of the government had refused to ratify their consent by being absent, complained the former Guerrilla. He asked Pope Francis, "with the great power of his prayer," to keep the Colombian people from "frustration" after the negotiations of peace had been an enormous force, Londono wrote. The FARC also prays for it.
The government and FARC had signed the peace treaty in November 2016, after four years of negotiation in Cuba. It was only through the signing that the guerrillas could be disarmed and demobilized, which in the summer became once again an opposition party with the same party leadership as a political force under the leadership of London.
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