Paraguay: military unleashed to fight guerillas

Paraguay’s Congress on Aug. 22 voted up broad powers allowing the executive branch to use the armed forces for domestic policing‚ÄĒjust one week after new President Horacio Cartes was sworn in, returning the once-entrenched right-wing Colorado Party to power after a hiatus of five years.¬† The vote follows a “state of alert” declared Aug. 18 after rebels of the Paraguayan People’s Army (EPP) attacked the Brazilian-owned¬†Koror√≥ estate in Tacuat√≠, San Pedro department, killing four private guards and then engaging National Police troops who responded, injuring one. The left-nationalist EPP, which took up arms in 2005, has been increasingly active in the north of the country in recent months, attacking police posts and demanding redistribution of the landed estates to the peasantry. (BBC News, Ultima Hora, Paraguay, Aug. 22; La Naci√≥n, Paraguay,¬†BBC News, DPA, Aug. 18; Ultima Hora, Aug. 17;¬†BBC News, Aug. 15)

The EPP has its own YouTube channel with homespun musical propaganda videos, which are considerably better from a critical standpoint than those of the Shining Path or the FARC.

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  1. Paraguay: guerilla attacks escalate

    In the latest attack by the Paraguayan People's Army (EPP), a militayr-police Mixed Task Force patrol was ambushed April 2 at Paso Tuja, Azotey municipality, Concepción department. The ensuing clash left three dead, including a soldier and two guerillas fighters. (Ultima Hora)
     

  2. Paraguay: rebel leader killed in clash with army

    Osvaldo Villalba, leader of the Paraguayan Peopl”s Army (EPP), was reportedly¬†killed in a clash with soldiers¬†in Amambay province. The¬†EPP has carried out a string of killings and kidnappings in recent years.¬†Among those being held by the EPP is the country’s former vice president, √ďscar Denis, who was kidnapped in September 2020. (BBC News)