Ex-rebels summoned to Colombia peace tribunal on kidnappings

BOGOTA, Colombia — Leaders with Colombia’s once-largest guerrilla group are being summoned to a newly created special peace tribunal for the first time to respond to allegations of war crimes committed during the country’s bloody five-decade conflict.

Nearly three dozen former guerrillas or their lawyers are expected to appear at Friday’s hearing focused on kidnappings.

The procedural hearing is part of Colombia’s effort to provide a full accounting of crimes committed by leftist rebels with the demobilized Revolutionary Armed Forces of Colombia as well as members of the military.

The conflict left at least 250,000 dead, 60,000 missing and millions displaced.

Ex-rebels will be asked to provide information on kidnappings between 1993 and 2012, when the guerrilla army was expanding. Kidnappings were used to extort relatives for money and show control over civilians.

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