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Colombia's Insurgents Target Energy Infrastructure

Colombia’s Fuerzas Armadas Revolucionarias de Colombia – Ejército del Pueblo, more commonly known by the acronym FARC, is the western hemisphere’s longest running guerrilla insurgency, dating from 1964.

In its long running struggle with the Colombain government, FARC has now begun targeting the country’s energy infrastructure, Bogota’s Caracol Radio reported.

On 19 June FARC terrorists dynamited an electricity pylon belonging to the Medellin Public Enterprises, EPM, the Yarumal-Ituango line in rural Cacagual, San Andres de Cuerquia Municipality, which left 12,000 people without electricity in the municipalities of San Jose de la Montana, San Andres de Cuerquia, Ituango, Peque and Toledo. The event was hardly news in the region, as FARC guerrillas earlier had attacked Yarumal in 2008.

Targeting energy infrastructure is hardly a Latin American insurgent technique unique to FARC, as Peru’s Maoist Partido Comunista del Perú-Sendero Luminoso (PCP-SL) had regularly targeted the country’s energy infrastructure during its campaign in the 1980s, particularly the power pylons supplying the capital Lima.

Nor are attacks limited to indigenous energy resources. Authorities in Cali have offered a $1,250,000 reward for information leading to the arrest of Hernan Dario Velasquez Saldarriaga, alias El Paisa or Oscar Montero, commander of the FARC's "Teofilo Forero Castro" Mobile Column and mastermind of the 9 June kidnapping of three Chinese Emerald Energy Oil Company workers and their translator on the Pablo-Los Pozos road in San Vicente del Caguan Municipality.

By. Charles Kennedy, Deputy Editor OilPrice.com


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