Rocky start in Colombia’s congress for ex-rebel wanted in US

BOGOTA, Colombia (AP) — A former top Colombian rebel leader wanted in the U.S. on drug charges has gotten off to a rocky start as a newly sworn-in lawmaker.

Seuxis Hernández arrived late to a House of Representatives committee meeting Wednesday at which lawmakers were discussing youth employment and other topics.

Minutes later, lawmaker Jennifer Arias announced that she was leaving. On the verge of tears, she described how a member of her family was killed during Colombia’s long civil conflict.

The head of the committee also lambasted the former rebel peace negotiator, describing his presence as “a joke.”

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The meeting was then abruptly adjourned.

Hernandez was sworn into office Tuesday to one of the 10 congressional seats guaranteed to former rebels under the government’s peace accord with leftist rebels.

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