“We went to work for unity to face, firmly and with belligerence, the current regime,” expressed the National Secretariat of the FARC and the Central Command of the ELN in a joint statement released by the New Colombia News Agency ANNCOL, headquartered in Stockholm.
The road to unity was outlined at a meeting which took place in “an atmosphere of brotherhood and camaraderie,” between the two rebel groups, who until now have not only been battling the government, but also fighting amongst themselves in Colombia’s decades-long civil war.
The ANNCOL news network has been considered to be the public relations wing of the FARC, and Colombian authorities are looking for a man believed to be the FARC’s contact within the agency.
“Only unity and resolute action by the Colombian patriots, democrats, revolutionaries and all those who keep faith in a political solution can end the war, find peace and enable the construction of a new Colombia,” added the two rebel groups.
In the ANNCOL report, the rebels set out a decree containing the following orders:
1. Stop the confrontation between the two forces from the publication of this document.
2. Do not allow any collaboration with the enemy of the people, or make public accusations.
3. Respect for non-combatant population, their property and interests and their social organizations.
4. Make use of thoughtful and respectful language between the two revolutionary organizations.
The report included rhetoric against Uribe’s government, which has dealt serious blows to both guerrilla groups since coming to power in 2002, and against the United States, which the rebels described as the “puppeteer” or real power behind the administration.
Uribe’s government has imposed “mafia tactics and institutional repression at gunpoint,” the statement said.
“The current regime of Alvaro Uribe’s government has become the most vicious puppet empire and is trampling national dignity, and the desires of Colombians,” the statement said. “Our only enemy is U.S. imperialism and its lackey oligarchy, against them we commit all our energy, fighting and revolutionary.”