Monday, March 24, 2024
By Steven L. Taylor

Here’s a follow-up to a story I noted yesterday: (via the BBC), Ecuadorean death report confirmed

Colombia has confirmed that an Ecuadorean was killed when its troops attacked a rebel camp inside the neighbouring state three weeks ago.

Defence Minister Juan Manuel Santos said his body was taken to Colombia after the raid along with that of top leftist Colombian rebel Raul Reyes.


News that Bogota has confirmed killing an Ecuadorean threatens to plunge the two countries back into diplomatic crisis, and perhaps again put the entire Andean region on a war footing, the BBC’s Jeremy McDermott reports from Colombia.

Confirming that an Ecuadorean citizen had been killed, Colombia’s defence ministry said the dead man appeared to have been a member of the Farc who specialised in helping rebels cross into Ecuador to hide.

At a minimum, this will increase tensions with Ecuador and allow President Correa a reason to continue to desist from reestablishing diplomatic relations with Colombia. No doubt the next step will be for Ecuador to dispute the role of the dead Ecuadoran.

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One Response to “Confirmed: Ecuadoran Killed in Colombian Raid on FARC”

  • el
  • pt
    1. Captain D. Says:

      I’m sure Ecuador will dispute the role of its citizen. But, it’s important to remember when they do this that it is highly unlikely that the man was not associated with the FARC. That doesn’t make it right for Colombia to cross the border and kill him, but it’s my experience that when a gunfight breaks out, people run in two directions: away from it, or towards it. The people running away from it might be innocents (maybe, maybe not), but the people who run towards it never are.

      Also, the FARC camps in that region are typically not situated in population centers. If the guy was killed in a bombing it means he was at the FARC camp in question. It’s really, really hard to accidentally find yourself in a FARC camp. It’s hard to intentionally find yourself in one.

      I may be playing the devil’s advocate for Colombia, but I think this is a case where we can reasonably apply some guilt by association.

      Probably just as Ecuador will argue the man’s innocence, Colombia will argue that he is proof of FARC connections on the Ecuador side of the border. And as a tactician, I’d have to side with Colombia on that – even though I think it was a mistake for Colombia to launch that cross-border raid in the first place.

      Ultimately, I think if Ecuador wants to avoid further incidents along its border, it needs to do a better job of policing the region and keeping the border closed to the FARC. As it stands, the border is as porous as a sponge, and it seems quite clear to me that the Ecuadorian government could do a lot more to prevent its territory being used as a safe haven for the FARC.

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