Bogota, Apr 30 (EFE).- At least six suspected dissident FARC rebels were killed in a military operation in the eastern state of Arauca, the Colombian defense minister said on Saturday.
Diego Molano said the slain rebels included Hilahin Mahecha alias Jaime Chucula, a leader of the 10th Front of the dissident FARC movement in Arauca near the border with Venezuela.
Molana said the operation on Friday in a rural area of Puerto Rondón town in Arauca “broke the backbone of the FARC dissidents.”
He said the 10th Front had murdered “more than 150 people and displaced families forcing them to leave their homes and communities.”
The armed group killed dozens of people in Arauca as part of a war waged by the FARC dissidents against the guerrillas of the National Liberation Army (ELN) for territorial control of the border region.
The defense ministry says Néstor Gregorio Vera Fernández, known by the alias Iván Mordisco, one of the most wanted guerrillas in the country, leads the 10th Front.
The minister, who traveled to Arauca, said security forces killed 91 rebels, including six FARC dissident and ELN leaders since the government launched the Stabilization Plan in January to restore order after a wave of violence between the two guerrilla groups.
“The offensive against the two rebel groups is permanent, that is why we maintain 7,000 men of the government forces to dismantle the leaders and weaken the structures (of the armed groups),” he said. EFE