Negotiations with the ELN do not mean that the Public Force has 'lowered its guard': Minister of Defense

Spread the love

The head of the portfolio, Iván Velásquez, in the delivery of the operational balance of the Armed Forces, pondered that in the 108 days of the Government of Gustavo Petro 90 combats have been recorded and operations against drug trafficking and criminal organizations have not stopped

Negotiations with the ELN do not mean that the Public Force has ‘let its guard down’: Minister of Defense

Minister Velásquez highlighted the dismantling of the Clan Bustamante, the capture of one of its leaders, alias Yuca, who in turn had control and a direct relationship in Buenaventura with the La Local gang, the Espartanos and the Chotas. Photo: Ministry of Defence.

During the delivery of the operational balance of the Armed Forces, between August 7 and November 23, 2022, Defense Minister Iván Velásquez reiterated that even though peace negotiations are being carried out with the National Liberation Army (ELN), ) military operations have not ceased throughout the Colombian territory.

“That we are currently in the peace talks, in the dialogues in Caracas with the ELN, does not mean, we have insisted, a lowering of guard or actions by the Armed Forces,” said Velásquez, adding the public force continues to develop its activities and comply with its constitutional mandate, “it has not stopped at any time and on the contrary its results have increased.”

The minister also reported that in the 108 days Since the Government of Gustavo Petro, there have been 90 combats that the Military Forces have sustained, highlighting the sustained operations San Pedro Claver and Perseus, developed by the Police and the Military Forces respectively.

Velásquez also pondered the results against criminal organizations and against drug trafficking: such as the dismantling of the Bustamante Clan, the capture of one of its leaders, alias Yuca, who in turn had control and a direct relationship in Buenaventura with the La Local gang, the Spartans and the Chotas.

“As has been proposed from the beginning by the National Government, the fight against organized crime is also aimed not only at confronting illegal armed organizations, but also with respect to their finances,” warned Minister Velásquez.

About what happened in recent days in Putumayo, related to the confrontation between the Carolina Ramirez structure and the Comandos de Frontera, the minister assured that “these are facts that call the attention of the Government and the security forces, on which we are additionally making a very detailed review of the situation in each of the country's regions, to also fine-tune the reactions that must also be differentiated, according to the characterization we make of each of these situations.”< /p>

Within the balance, Colonel Olga Patricia Salazar, commander of the DIJIN, said that in the more than 100 days of government the Police have captured more than 44,000 people, that 956 were for sexual crimes against minors and the seizure of 203 tons of narcotic drugs, it also detailed that 119 drug traffickers have been captured, of which 29 are for extradition purposes.

The operational balance of the Police also reports progress in the fight against smuggling, such as the deployment of 8,379 customs control actions, which have resulted in the apprehension of 23.8 million units of merchandise valued at more than 79,000 million pesos.

For his part, the commander of the Military Forces, Helder Fernán Giraldo, said that 3,816 arrests have been carried out, 23 people have been killed in combat, 158 members of these illegal groups have submitted to justice and 37 have demobilized. .

In the actions against drug trafficking, the seizure of 107 tons of cocaine, 65 tons of marijuana and 5 tons of coca base paste stand out. In addition, the destruction of 1,553 drug laboratories.

General Giraldo highlighted the close to 2,000 Integral Action activities (Development Support Days, Social Projects, Awareness Raising Activities and Business) in contribution to social development, where more than 100 prioritized municipalities were intervened and nearly 1,200,000 people benefited.

Finally, General Giraldo said that during this period eight soldiers have been killed and 47 more have been injured.