“Megateo,” the leader of small guerrilla group EPL, is collaborating with the FARC in the northern Colombian drug trade that is financing both rebel groups, the country’s defense minister said Sunday.
“Megateo these days is a partner, a member of the FARC, which as we know is dedicated to drug trafficking,” said Minister Juan Carlos Pinzon. The minister made the comments while visiting the town of Tibu in the department of Norte de Santander where alleged FARC guerrillas have carried out six attacks since Friday.
In response to the increased FARC activity, Pinzon said the security forces would put more focus on the Catatumbo region which borders Venezuela and is considered one of Colombia’s main drug trafficking routes.
“We will take more action, more operations, more control of the territory. We will put more check points in the urban areas to attack those organizations that are carrying out attacks against the Colombian people,” said the minister.
The Catatumbo region has increasingly become one of the epicenters of the Colombian conflict after the killing of “Alfonso Cano,” who led the FARC from the southwestern Tolima mountains until his death in December last year.
The FARC’s new supreme leader, “Timochenko,” is believed to be operating from Catatumbo, which has easy passage to Venezuela for the guerrillas because of the dense jungle border.