Colombia Farc rebels: President vows to hunt down new group

Colombia Farc rebels: President vows to seek out new group

A handout photo made available by the Colombian Presidency shows President of Colombia Ivan Duque during a statement, in Bogota, Colombia, 29 August 2019.Picture copyright

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President Iván Duque has hit again at rebels who accused his authorities of betrayal

Colombia’s president has vowed to seek out Farc insurgent commanders who’ve referred to as on followers to take up arms after three years of peace.

President Iván Duque provided $882,000 (£725,000) for the seize of every of the rebels who appeared in a video with former Farc commander Iván Márquez.

He was one of many principal negotiators of the 2016 peace deal, which ended 50 years of battle.

However now the previous commander has accused the federal government of “betrayal”.

“In two years, greater than 500 social leaders have been killed and 150 guerrilla fighters are lifeless amidst the indifference and the indolence of the state,” Ivan Márquez says within the 30-minute video, referring to the excessive variety of activists and former Farc members killed since President Duque took workplace.

However President Duque hit again afterward Thursday, accusing the rebels of being “narco-terrorists who’ve the shelter and assist of the dictatorship of Nicolás Maduro”, president of neighbouring Venezuela.

What does the insurgent video present?

It exhibits Iván Márquez studying out an announcement in entrance of a banner saying: “Whereas there’s a will to combat, there will be hope of successful”.

He’s surrounded by a few dozen women and men wearing camouflage. Amongst them are two different senior former Farc rebels, Jesús Santrich, and the person generally known as El Paisa.

Ivan Márquez says that he referred to as for a return to arms as a result of the Colombian state had “betrayed” the peace settlement he helped negotiate.

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The video exhibits Iván Márquez studying out his name to arms

Within the recording, he additionally says that the brand new guerrilla group, which carries the outdated title, Farc-EP (Revolutionary Armed Forces of Colombia – Individuals’s Military), will pursue completely different ways.

He says that the group will solely “reply to offensives” and that it’ll not perform kidnappings for ransom however as a substitute “search dialogue” with native landowners and enterprise folks to attempt to persuade them to “contribute” to their trigger.

The video ends with Jesús Santrich shouting “Lengthy stay the Farc-EP!”

What did the president say?

President Duque has appeared on nationwide tv, asserting “the creation of a particular unit” to assist observe the rebels, boosted by “strengthened intelligence, investigation and mobility capabilities all through Colombian territory”.

He stated Ivan Márquez’s announcement was not “the beginning of a brand new guerrilla motion”, however a “legal” enterprise backed by Mr Maduro.

“Let’s not fall into the lure of those that right now are attempting to cover behind false ideological clothes to maintain their legal scaffolding,” he added, in response to information company AFP.

Who’re the Farc?

The Revolutionary Armed Forces of Colombia (Farc, after the initials in Spanish), Colombia’s largest insurgent group, had been based in 1964 because the armed wing of the Communist Celebration and observe a Marxist-Leninist ideology.

Their principal founders had been small farmers and land employees who had banded collectively to combat towards the staggering ranges of inequality in Colombia on the time.

Whereas the Farc have some city teams, they’ve all the time been an overwhelmingly rural guerrilla organisation.

The Farc’s decades-long armed battle

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1964: Arrange as armed wing of Communist Celebration

2002: At its peak, it has a military of 20,000 fighters controlling as much as a 3rd of the nation

2008: The Farc suffers a sequence of defeats in its worst 12 months

2012: Begin of peace talks in Havana

2016: Peace deal signed in November

2017: Farc formally ceases to be an armed group

2019: Former commander Iván Márquez pronounces “a brand new section of the armed battle”

Is the Farc again now?

Many would argue it has by no means utterly gone away. Whereas the group’s leaders signed a peace deal and virtually 7,000 of their fighters handed of their weapons, there have been teams of dissidents that by no means stood down.

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Media captionHave a look inside a Farc insurgent camp earlier than the group disarmed

The variety of dissidents is difficult to estimate, however the determine cited in a leaked navy doc earlier this 12 months was 2,300.

A few of these dissidents by no means laid down their weapons, others have returned and but others are new recruits. However to this point, they’ve been scattered across the nation in dozens of small teams.

Tuesday’s video displaying three former influential commanders may very well be an indication that these teams are becoming a member of forces and can once more act as one insurgent group.

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Media captionFormer Farc rebels grow to be eco-warriors to cease deforestation within the Amazon

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