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Special Laws in Peace Processes

A statutory law is above any ordinary law because it delimits other types of norms, but does not exceed the authority of the constitutional legal framework. In addition, these are laws that impact the fundamental rights of citizens and aspects that are very relevant for most citizens.

Special laws in peace processes: the case of Colombia

In Colombia, the Statutory Law on the Special Jurisdiction for Peace (JEP) awaits approval by President Iván Duque, after having been submitted to the stipulated process that included its presentation as a bill before the Congress of the Republic, legislative debates, approval by congressmen and detailed evaluation by the Constitutional Court, where it is verified that it effectively guarantees a fundamental right and that it is in accordance with the Magna Carta. This ruling was published in December 2018.

The Executive's response has not yet been made public and the silence has sparked rumors on the matter.. Some experts in the area have pointed out that if it is not approved, it could jeopardize the Peace Agreement in terms of justice, since even if the JEP were to exist (despite not having the President's signature) there could be inconvenient situations for the victims of the conflict, the military, the police and those who come before this court.

A statutory law may be challenged by a President on grounds of expediency or constitutionality.. The JEP law has already been constitutionally endorsed, so the President may oppose it, considering that there are elements of the instrument that should be modified or eliminated, because they may conflict with other State functions.

If the statutory law is challenged, legally the process must start from the first step.The JEP would be able to continue to function as it has until now, but its actions would be in a legal limbo. If this were to happen, the JEP could continue to function as it has so far, but its actions would be in legal limbo.

In all the proceedings of this Jurisdiction, the right to the truth is contemplated.The rights to justice, reparation and non-repetition, as well as the gravity and consequences of the harm caused to the victims, are also taken into account. For this reason, each case dealt with must meet the conditions established for these rights.