Colombia detains FARC members accused of attack on former minister

Posted on Feb 25 2014 - 11:53am by Rico
Fernando Londoño after the Bogota bomb attack (Still: RCN TV)

Colombian authorities have captured six alleged FARC guerrillas linked to the attempted assassination of former Interior Minister Fernando Londoño in 2012, said the defense minister on Tuesday.

Speaking from the Colombian state of Huila in the country’s southwest, Minister Juan Carlos Pinzon informed that the six guerrillas detained during a joint military and National Police operation were found in the state’s towns of La Plata and El Hobo, and possessed a number of explosive materials among an extensive arsenal.

“This terrorist command (FARC unit) was not a normal unit, as is observed by the weapons that have been confiscated, it was, for lack of a better term, a special forces unit,” stated Pinzon adding that the detainees formed part of the Teofilo Forero Column and the Sixth from of the FARC, the largest rebel group in Colombia.

On Monday the Colombian government and the FARC resumed another round of peace talks in Cuba that, if successful, would see the end of the country’s 50 year civil conflict.

MORE: FARC Peace Talks on Drugs Issue Resumes Amid Tensions Over Military

According to Pinzon, the detainees have been linked to the attempted assassination of former Minister Londoño with a bomb, which occurred in May 2012 near the financial center of the capital Bogota and left two people dead and more than 50 injured — including Londoño.

Londoño, an Interior and Justice Minister for the government of former President Alvaro Uribe until 2010, has been a critic of Colombian President Juan Manuel Santos’ peace talks with the FARC.

Among the six guerrillas destined is Tabares Marin, alias “Peludo”, the brother of Diego Fernando Tabares who was arrested in 2013 for taking part in the attempted assassination on Londoño, Pinzon stated.

MORE: Londoño points finger at FARC after Bogota bombing

Additionally, Pinzon revealed that intelligence operations between the Police and the military had intercepted communications made by members of the Domingo Lain front from the ELN rebel group — the second largest in Colombia — describing their attempt to assassinate Presidential candidate Aida Avella on Sunday.

MORE: ELN attempted to assassinate leftist election candidate: Minister of Defense

MORE: Attempted assassination on leftist Colombian presidential candidate widely condemned

Sources

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