sábado, 19 de octubre de 2013

Mayors shot in El Salvador, murders said increased across country

The mayor of the town of Osicala in north-eastern El Salvador was gunned down on 17 October as he drove away from a meeting, the second such shooting within days in the department of Morazán, the Salvadorean daily El Mundo reported on 18 October. The daily observed that an unspecified number of fellow passengers were left unharmed; the mayor, Fredy Edilberto Villeda García, was injured after shooting caused him to crash his car, then shot to death when he staggered out. Gunmen had shot and injured the mayor of nearby Torola on 14 October while the mayor of another neighbouring district San Fernando was cited as saying he survived a similar attack last May. The towns are in the department of Morazán near the frontier with Honduras. The latest attack was provisionally attributed to local highwaymen. The website elslavador.com reported on 18 October that homicides increased across the country from June to the end of September, compared to the same period in 2012. It cited figures from police, coroners and the state prosecution service as indicating 1,903 homicides in a period to 17 October, presumably from 1 June. It did not state how many were killed from June to the end of September but observed there were 257 more homicides in that period, year on year. The homicide rate for October was described as similar so far to 2012.

Colombian guerrillas detained, surrender to Army

Colombian troops detained five purported guerrillas of the Revolutionary Armed Forces of Colombia (FARC) in the north-eastern department of Norte de Santander at an unspecified date, including a suspected security officer attached to the FARC's supreme leader Rodrigo Londoño Echeverry, Caracol radio reported on 18 October. The more important detainee was identified as the guerrilla dubbed Freddy Chapas, chief financial officer of the 29th of May Company in the FARC's Front 33, and second-in-command of the FARC chief's security team, Caracol reported. The Army caught the five in the district of Tibú, in operations said to be continuing. Separately a man identified as a guerrilla of the National Liberation Army (ELN) surrendered to the Army in the department of César in northern Colombia, apparently taking advantage of army operations in the southern part of the department to escape. He surrendered to troops in the district of la Gloria, without his weapons, the Army reported on 18 October. Two policemen were reported injured late on 18 October when an explosive was thrown at a patrol car by suspected ELN guerrillas, in the department of Arauca near the Venezuelan frontier. The assailants fled after a shootout, El Colombiano reported on 19 October, observing that the ELN and FARC had in recent days intensified attacks on state forces in the frontier area.