The Revolutionary Armed Forces of Colombia demanded Thursday security guarantees for its members following the assassination of Luis Alberto Ortiz Cabezas, a beneficiary of the newly-passed Amnesty Law.
In a statement, the FARC said the murder of Ortiz Cabezas demonstrates "the permanence of paramilitaries in the territories and undermines the confidence in the real guarantees of security to the life and integrity of the people — (guarantees) that are ultimately the exclusive responsibility of the state."
Ortiz Cabezas was assassinated on Sunday in the municipality of Tumaco in the department of Nariño. The FARC indicated that the person responsible was a suspected drug trafficker, known as Renol who is known to intimidate the population in the area.
The FARC also asked how many more murders it would take before President Juan Manuel Santos begins to implement the security guarantees established in the final agreement. In the communique, the rebels demanded that the authorities investigate the presence of paramilitaries in the municipality of Tumaco.
Since the FARC and the government announced a bilateral cease-fire on Aug. 26, more than a dozen rural, Indigenous and Afro-descendent leaders have been killed in Colombia, including eight in the province of Cauca, reported Colombia Informa. Thirty-five have been killed across the country since the beginning of the year, according to the human rights group, Somos Defensores.
On Wednesday, Gerson Acosta Salazar, an official with the Timbio municipality in the department of Cauca, was killed. According to the National Indigenous Organization of Colombia, the Indigenous leader was attacked by criminals who entered his residence in the village of La Laguna and shot him dead.
Venezuela's President Nicolas Maduro warned today about an impending massacre against the leaders of the FARC. "It hurts me to see how in Colombia they make a mockery of the peace process and continue killing peasant, student and labor leaders," he said during a broadcast on local channel VTV.
The Venezuelan leader reminded his audience that the peace agreement in Colombia was made possible thanks to the leader of the Bolivarian Revolution, the late President Hugo Chavez.