HomeNewsBrief'Shining Path' Attack Leaves 5 Soldiers Dead
BRIEF

'Shining Path' Attack Leaves 5 Soldiers Dead

PERU / 31 AUG 2012 BY EDWARD FOX EN

Five Peruvian soldiers were killed in an attack reportedly carried out by the VRAE-based faction of Peru's Shining Path guerrilla group, evidence that, despite the continued state of emergency in the area, the government is still far from eliminating the rebels from their last remaining stronghold.

Alleged Shining Path guerrillas launched an attack Aug. 15 on a military base in Mazangaro, Junin region, killing five Peruvian soldiers and injuring seven others, reported the AFP.

Mazangaro lies in Peru's lawless Apurimac and Ene River Valley (VRAE) where a state of emergency has been in place since May 2003. The region is home to the Shining Path's last remaining faction of some 500 fighters, led by Victor Quispe Palomino, alias "Comrade Jose."

According to La Republica, the attack could be in repsonse to the army's seizure three days prior to the assault of 800 kilos of precursor chemicals used in the production of cocaine.

InSight Crime Analysis

Despite dismantling the Shining Path's Huallaga-based faction in northern Peru earlier this year, the government has had no such success in the VRAE where the rebels continue to operate with relative ease. In addition to this latest attack, the group has been able to embarrass the government on a number of occasions this year, kidnapping 36 gas workers in April and subsequently ambushing, and killing security patrols sent to rescue the hostages. One of the faction's leaders even gave a surprise interview to journalists in the rebel stronghold, appearing unfazed by the government's military offensive against the group.

The VRAE is by no means home to only the Shining Path, however. Much of the cocaine trade in the VRAE is divided amongst Peru's cocaine clans, as a recent series by IDL-Reporteros outlined. These clans operate in conjunction with the Shining Path, according to the report, with the rebels acting as guards for drug shipments as well as controlling their own trafficking networks. If the attack was a reprisal for the army's seizure of precursors chemicals, the Shining Path may have acted on behalf of others and not necessarily on its own.

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

COCA / 17 MAY 2022

A government proposal for Peru to purchase all the country’s coca production has generated fierce debate, but experts question whether…

COCA / 27 SEP 2022

Increased coca cultivation in Peru provides the raw ingredient cocaine traffickers use when pushing into developing markets like Australia.

BOLIVIA / 13 AUG 2021

The US Coast Guard unloaded 27 tons of cocaine after a three-month operation in the Pacific and Caribbean, a massive…

About InSight Crime

THE ORGANIZATION

Escaping Barrio 18

27 JAN 2023

Last week, InSight Crime published an investigation charting the story of Desafío, a 28-year-old Barrio 18 gang member who is desperate to escape gang life. But there’s one problem: he’s…

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…