Colombia: FARC Defectors Helped Plan Raid That Killed 33 Rebels, Says General
March 23, 2012 By Staff
Today in Latin America
Top Story — Colombian air force commander General Tito Pinilla said that FARC rebels who defected had helped to plan an attack that killed 33 FARC guerrillas on Wednesday. Five military planes reportedly bombed the guerrilla encampment in Colombia’s Arauca state for three minutes in the early morning before troops raided by land. National Institute of Legal Medicine director Carlos Eduardo Valdés said that the military brought 36 bodies to the Arauca morgue later that day. According to Colombian Defense Minister Juan Carlos Pinzón, 51 FARC fighters rebels were captured or killed in a span of 24 hours as part of a new military strategy to target important military and financial units of the FARC. Last month, the FARC said it would suspend ransom kidnappings and will release its remaining hostages, many of whom have been held for more than a decade. Former Colombian Sen. Piedad Córdoba said that the FARC was planning to release a group of hostages on March 30 and a second group on April 1.
Read more from the Washington Post.
Headlines from the Western Hemisphere
- A judge in California put a gay undocumented immigrant’s deportation proceeding on hold because he is married to a U.S. citizen and his green card application is being processed.
- Mexican officials in Guerrero state said that two people have died from injuries and complications following the 7.4-magnitude earthquake on Tuesday.
- Miami International Airport authorities said they found two human fetuses in jars in the luggage of two female passengers returning from Cuba.
- U.S. NBA star Allen Iverson signed a one-month contract to play with the Pueblo Nuevo team in the Dominican Republic.
- Despite disagreement over drug legalization, Guatemalan President Otto Pérez Molina is pushing regional leaders to think of alternative ways to fight drug trafficking other than a purely military strategy.
- Honduras ratified the Convention on Cluster Munitions on Tuesday, becoming the 70th State Party to the treaty.
- Hikers in Caracol, Belize gathered to celebrate the spring equinox in the shadow of the site’s Mayan ruins.
- A Colombian guerrilla wanted for killing three Americans was captured in Venezuela Wednesday.
- Venezuelan President Hugo Chávez called reports of contaminated water in Monagas an act of “media terrorism” that alarmed the population without proof.
- Colombian Finance Minister Juan Carlos Echeverry said José Antonio Ocampo’s potential nomination to head the World Bank was not viable because the Inter-American Development Bank is currently led by Luis Alberto Moreno, another Colombian.
- Indigenous squatters living near Rio de Janeiro’s Maracanã stadium will be displaced during the surrounding neighborhood’s $63.2 million makeover for the 2014 World Cup.
- Argentine Foreign Minister Hector Timerman said he’d sent letters to the heads of the New York and London stock exchanges warning investors that companies exploring oil near the Falkland Islands risk civil and criminal penalties in Argentina.
- Copper mining is rapidly overtaking agricultural work in Chile’s Copiapo valley in the Atacama region.
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