lunes, 2 de junio de 2014

Guerrilla mines kill four Colombian soldiers

Four Colombian soldiers - a junior officer and three privates - were killed on 30 May by mines thought laid by the Revolutionary Armed Forces of Colombia (FARC). The Army declared the soldiers entered a mine field "as they were arriving at their base" in La Chorrera in AmazonasCali's El País reported, citing the Associated Press. Colombian forces were engaged in various operations against the FARC in recent days. President Juan Manuel Santos was cited as saying that day that "this week 70 FARC and ELN (National Liberation Army) bandits have been neutralised, 23 have turned themselves in, 40 have been captured and seven shot dead." Separately, the Armed Forces Joint Command declared on 1 June that there would be no ceasefire during the country's negotiations in Cuba with the FARC, and negotiators had not discussed, nor would they at all, the Armed Forces and their institutional role. The Armed Forces Commander General Juan Pablo Rodríguez Barragán stated in the communiqué that an office would be formed to fortify the Forces' legal defences and "legitimacy."

FARC guerrillas reported killed, held in Colombia

Nine fighters of the Revolutionary Armed Forces of Colombia (FARC) were reported killed, and several detained in recent Army and police operations around Colombia. On 28 or 29 May the Army declared it killed three FARC fighters when bombing FARC positions in the district of Murindó. The casualties were described as members of the security ring of a FARC captain dubbed Pastor Alape and included a senior security aide, a man dubbed BeataRadio Santa Fe reported. Six FARC members were killed and four arrested, in two operations in south-western Colombia, RCN La Radio reported on 2 June, citing EFE. Three of them were killed in the district of Silvia in Cauca in an operation against the FARC's Jacobo Arenas Mobile Column, and three were killed and four held in a rural part of Buenaventura. The FARC separately reported the "natural death" on 9 May of a field captain active in southern districts of Colombia, a guerrilla called Darío 40, Radio Santa Fe reported on 31 May. The guerrilla was said to have died of "an unknown disease while undertaking strategic tasks for" the FARC at an unspecified location. In neighbouring Ecuador, troops detained a suspect identified as chief financial officer of the FARC's Front 48, handing him over to Colombia on 30 or 31 May, the broadcaster Caracol reported. The detained, named as Henry Martín Castillo, was held at an unspecified location possibly near the frontier where Ecuadorean troops had found eight "illegal crossing points." Five collaborators of the FARC including a former mayor, were separately reported arrested in unspecified places in Colombia. Their activities reportedly included smuggling money and equipment to guerrillas and providing training and courses "of interest" to members of the FARC's fronts 26 and 53 in the departments of Cundinamarca, Huila and Cauca. One detainee was mayor of Lejanías in Meta in 2008-11, and suspected to have syphoned off unspecified amounts of municipal money to the FARC, Radio Santa Fe reported on 30 May.