Ecumenical Witness for Reconciliation and Peace in El Salvador

Representatives of social organizations participated in hearings on May 27th, 2019 conducted by the Political Commission of El Salvador´s Legislative Assembly. The purpose of the hearings was to receive papers and testimonies regarding the consideration of two bills that seek national reconciliation and transitional justice for the victims of the armed conflict in that country. The members of the Political Commission listened to the contributions of different associations and entities linked to the topic. The objective of the new bill of reconciliation is to replace the one enacted in 1993 which was declared unconstitutional in July 2016 by the Constitutional Chamber of the Supreme Court of Justice (CSJ). The CSJ made this decision because it considered it contrary to the right to access justice, to judicial protection of fundamental rights, and because it violated the right to full reparation for the victims of the armed conflict.

In this present phase, the parliamentarians received representatives of the Board Against Impunity Mesa in El Salvador. Also, representatives of the José Simeón Cañas Central American University (UCA), victims´associations, the Catholic Cardinal of San Salvador Gregorio Rosa Chávez and Bishop Medardo Gómez, from the Salvadorian Lutheran Church, a longstanding Partner of Global Ministries, attended and presented papers to the Commission.

Bishop Gómez has already commented that a Law of Reconciliation is necessary, not of forgiveness and forgetfulness. He mentions that since the war, reconciliation is a historical debt of the State. "We cannot forget the facts, we need to know the truth," said the Bishop, who also emphasized that the most important thing is to do justice to all the victims.