Colombian officials try to verify death of FARC faction leader who rejected truce with government
According to security sources, the wound that led Marquez to his death might have come from an attack led by the leader of the rival FARC dissident group
July 7, 2023 8:06am
Updated: July 7, 2023 7:33pm
The leader of a faction of the former FARC rebels in Colombia Luciano Marín Arango, alias Iván Márquez, purportedly died in Venezuela as a result of wounds sustained in an attack in June 2022, according to sources. The Colombian government is working to verify his death.
"The information provided by the group is that he died in a hospital in Caracas, where he received medical attention for serious injuries he suffered in an attack in Venezuela at the end of June 2022," a source told Reuters.
The Revolutionary Armed Forces of Colombia (FARC) were demobilized in 2016, after a deal with the government. However, two dissent groups within the faction rejected the deal, including Marquez’s group, the so-called Segunda Marquetalia.
Marquez’s dissident group has around 1,670 members who continue to engage in drug trafficking at the Colombia-Venezuela border and illegal mining in the South American country.
According to security sources, the wound that led Marquez to his death might have come from an attack led by the leader of the rival FARC dissident group, Ivan Mordisco. During the attack, Marquez, 68, suffered injuries to one of his legs, reportedly lost one of his arms, and had a piece of shrapnel embedded in his brain, according to journalist Yamid Amat with CM&, who first reported the story.
Sources in Venezuela told CAMBIO that the shrapnel wound became more complicated a few days ago, even though he had shown a notable general improvement in health recently.
Colombia’s Defense Minister Ivan Velasquez said there is still no official confirmation of Marquez’s death but that the Costa Rican government is working to obtain more information on the incident.
"Colombia has one less threat. Another symbol of the evil that plagued the country with massacres, human rights violations, a recruiter of minors and drug trafficker is dead,” said former Defense Minister Diego Molano.