FARC commander Mario Marulanda dead: Colombia

The founder and chief commander of the Revolutionary Armed Forces of Colombia (FARC), Manuel “Tirofijo” (Sureshot) Marulanda, has died, the Colombian government announced May 24.”Through military intelligence, we learned Pedro Antonio Marin, alias Manuel Marulanda or Sureshot, the principal chief of the FARC, is dead,” the Defense Ministry said in a statement. “The cause of death is still to be confirmed.” (Reuters, May 24) Carlos Lozano, editor of Bogotá’s leftist weekly Voz, said Marulanda’s death, “if this is what has occurred,” will leave a serious gap in the FARC’s command structure. But he was confident the FARC would survive, and that Alfonso Cano (nom de guerre of Guillermo Sàenz Vargas) will take over as top commander. (El Tiempo, Bogotá, May 25)

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