Authorities said “El Negro Eliecer,” one of the leaders of the FARC’s 33d Front and the “right hand” of top FARC leader “Timochenko,” was killed during combat with the Colombian armed forces in Hacari, a municipality just south of the Catatumbo region where Timochenko is suspected to be hiding from authorities.
The army said the FARC rebel was the commander of the Antonio Santos Mobile Column, a sub-division of the 33d Front. A reward of $270,000 had been issued for information leading up to his death or arrest.
The subversive had been a FARC rebel for 31 years before being killed on Sunday. Authorities said he was a key associate of alias “Megateo,” the leader of the dissident faction of the mostly-defunct Maoist EPL rebel group and one of the biggest drug lords in northern Colombia.
This is not the first time authorities have heralded the death of El Negro Eliecer. Authorities reported the killing of the FARC commander in mid-2012. However, he resurfaced just weeks later, stating the rumors of his death had been greatly exaggerated.
According to Colombian intelligence sources the 33d Front of the FARC, together with the FARC’s “special forces” units Resistencia Catatumbo and Resistencia Bari, is charged with protecting the top FARC commander Timochenko as he moves between several temporary camps located in the Hacari, Sardinata y Tibu municipalities, all located in the northern Norte de Santander department.
Location of the combat
- Muere en desarrollo de operaciones militares alias El Negro Eliecer (Colombian army website)
- Muere en combate hombre de confianza de ‘Timochenko’ (El Espectador)
- ¿Por qué ‘Timochenko’ fue elegido como el máximo líder de las Farc? (El Pais, Cali)