HomeNewsBriefShining Path Attack on Army Helicopter Kills 2
BRIEF

Shining Path Attack on Army Helicopter Kills 2

PERU / 15 SEP 2011 BY GEOFFREY RAMSEY EN

Two Peruvian soldiers were killed in an attack on a helicopter carried out by Shining Path guerrillas in the remote coca-growing VRAE region.

As La Republica reports, the attack occurred Wednesday afternoon near the town of San Martin de Pangoa, in the Apurimac and Ene River Valley (VRAE), the heartland of the Shining Path (Sendero Luminoso) rebel group.

While on patrol as part of a routine counterinsurgency sweep, one of the men stepped on a landmine, and a helicopter was called to evacuate the unit. After the helicopter took off, guerrilla snipers opened fire, killing the pilot and another soldier on board. The co-pilot was able to take over, and the helicopter managed to escape the area.

The attack comes just days after the government reassessed its security strategy in the region.

Military sources believe that the guerrillas’ plan was to cause the aircraft to crash, killing all those inside it. This tactic has been used successfully before by the rebels, once in 1999 and again, ten years later, in 2009.

The attack occurred just six days after Peruvian President Ollanta Humala met with the leaders of the Joint Command of the Armed Forces in the country to re-evaluate military strategy in the VRAE. In addition to improving intelligence sharing mechanisms and further restricting access to precursor chemicals, Humala called for economic development in the impoverished region. "We have to win over the population, have them on our side. Otherwise, we’ll advance little or not at all; victory will be far off. So we agree that this war is not only military but also economic. Social inclusion is fundamental to taking the VRAE "said Humala.

As InSight Crime has reported, the region is extremely important to the illicit drugs trade, and is one of the last holdouts of the remnants of the rebel group. Some sectors of the local population have developed a dependent relationship on the guerrillas. Because economic opportunities are scarce in the VRAE, coca cultivation is one of the main sources of income there, and the Shining Path are the main purchasers of the plant.

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.

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

CHINA AND CRIME / 10 NOV 2021

A Peruvian governor is accused of receiving bribes to provide concessions to Chinese firms that trafficked illegal wood – an…

ENVIRONMENTAL CRIME / 12 OCT 2021

Six years after investigators in Peru took down a massive timber trafficking operation that shipped millions of dollars’ worth of…

BRAZIL / 26 JUL 2022

Indigenous communities in Brazil are using drones to fight deforestation and the frequent assaults of loggers on their lands.

About InSight Crime

THE ORGANIZATION

Europe Coverage Makes a Splash

20 JAN 2023

Last week, InSight Crime published an analysis of the role of Amsterdam’s Schiphol Airport as an arrival hub for cocaine and methamphetamine from Mexico.  The article was picked up by…

THE ORGANIZATION

World Looks to InSight Crime for Mexico Expertise

13 JAN 2023

Our coverage of the arrest of Chapitos’ co-founder Ovidio Guzmán López in Mexico has received worldwide attention.In the UK, outlets including The Independent and BBC…

THE ORGANIZATION

InSight Crime Shares Expertise with US State Department

16 DEC 2022

Last week, InSight Crime Co-founder Steven Dudley took part in the International Anti-Corruption Conference organized by the US State Department’s Bureau of Democracy, Human Rights, & Labor and…

THE ORGANIZATION

Immediate Response to US-Mexico Marijuana Investigation

9 DEC 2022

InSight Crime’s investigation into how the legalization of marijuana in many US states has changed Mexico’s criminal dynamics made a splash this week appearing on the front page of…

THE ORGANIZATION

‘Ndrangheta Investigation, Exclusive Interview With Suriname President Make Waves

2 DEC 2022

Two weeks ago, InSight Crime published an investigation into how Italian mafia clan the ‘Ndrangheta built a cocaine trafficking network from South America to ‘Ndrangheta-controlled Italian ports. The investigation generated…