HomeNewsBriefEcuador Detains 9 'Colombian Rebels' Near Border
BRIEF

Ecuador Detains 9 'Colombian Rebels' Near Border

ECUADOR / 23 OCT 2012 BY ROSS LANCASTER EN

Ecuador’s Army reported the capture of nine Colombian guerrillas in two operations last week in Sucumbios province, a strategic area for rest and resupply of the FARC's powerful Southern Bloc.

On October 20, the Ecuadorian authorities arrested five people in the region of El Tablero following a confrontation, according to La Hora. This came after four suspected members of a Colombian armed group, detained during a separate operation on October 18, were handed over to Colombian authorities. Ecuadorian Defence Minister Miguel Carvajal said that some of the four had been caught on an island in the San Miguel River.

An official statement said that the five detained in the second operation on October 20 were members of "illegal armed Colombian groups," and that a rifle (reportedly an AK-47) and pistol were also seized. 

Currently the five are being detained in Puerto El Carmen, where one is receiving hospital treatment.

InSight Crime Analysis

The “subversives” are most likely members of the Revolutionary Armed Forces of Colombia (FARC), which has a strong presence in Putumayo, just across the river in Colombia. The rebels are known to cross the border in order to get supplies, rest, carry out training, and base themselves out of reach of the Colombian authorities.

Indeed, the Colombian security forces sparked an international crisis when their planes crossed a few kilometers into Ecuador in 2008 to carry out a bombing raid on the camp of FARC commander Luis Edgar Devia Silva, alias “Raul Reyes,” who was killed in the operation.

It is not clear how far the Ecuadorian government now tolerates the guerrillas. President Rafael Correa is alleged to have received millions of dollars from the FARC for his presidential campaign, but since 2008 he has launched operations against the group's presence in his country. In May 2012 Wilson Tapiero, leader of FARC’s 48th Front, was arrested in Sucumbios, close to El Tablero, and the Ecuadorian government recently deployed some 10,000 troops to the Colombian border to fight drug trafficking.

The small size of the groups detained reveals a change in FARC tactics -- they no longer more in large heavily armed and uniformed units, but rather groups of four or five and often dress in civilian clothing.

share icon icon icon

Was this content helpful?

We want to sustain Latin America’s largest organized crime database, but in order to do so, we need resources.

DONATE

What are your thoughts? Click here to send InSight Crime your comments.

We encourage readers to copy and distribute our work for non-commercial purposes, with attribution to InSight Crime in the byline and links to the original at both the top and bottom of the article. Check the Creative Commons website for more details of how to share our work, and please send us an email if you use an article.

Tags

Was this content helpful?

We want to sustain Latin America’s largest organized crime database, but in order to do so, we need resources.

DONATE

Related Content

ECUADOR / 24 DEC 2021

Ecuador's descent into violence followed a common path: more cocaine led to more cash and more weapons for the gangs.

COCA / 1 SEP 2021

Emerging from almost six decades of civil conflict, the world’s number one cocaine producer has paid scant attention to environmental…

COCAINE / 23 JUN 2021

In Ecuador’s coastal town of Posorja, boats are being set on fire and people are being killed, as this fishing…

About InSight Crime

LA ORGANIZACIÓN

Extensive Coverage of our Chronicles of a Cartel Bodyguard

23 SEP 2022

Our recent investigation, A Cartel Bodyguard in Mexico’s 'Hot Land', has received extensive media coverage.

THE ORGANIZATION

InSight Crime, American University Host Illegal Fishing Panel

19 SEP 2022

InSight Crime and the Center for Latin American & Latino Studies (CLALS) at American University discussed the findings of a joint investigation on IUU fishing at a September 9 conference.

THE ORGANIZATION

Impact on the Media Landscape

9 SEP 2022

InSight Crime’s first investigation on the Dominican Republic made an immediate impact on the Dominican media landscape, with major news outlets republishing and reprinting our findings, including in …

THE ORGANIZATION

InSight Crime Sharpens Its Skills

2 SEP 2022

Last week, the InSight Crime team gathered for our annual retreat in Colombia, where we discussed our vision and strategy for the next 12 months.  During the week, we also learned how to…

THE ORGANIZATION

Colombia’s Fragile Path to Peace Begins to Take Shape

26 AUG 2022

InSight Crime is charting the progress of President Gustavo Petro’s agenda as he looks to revolutionize Colombia’s security policy, opening dialogue with guerrillas, reforming the military and police, and…