ELN News

Colombia Govt, ELN Sign Ceasefire Amid Growing Dissidence

Colombia Govt, ELN Sign Ceasefire Amid Growing Dissidence

The government of Colombia and the country's largest remaining guerrilla group have agreed to a bilateral ceasefire, but the rebels' lack of unity may make enforcement difficult.

ELN Profile

ELN

ELN

The National Liberation Army (Ejército de Liberación Nacional - ELN) is one of the two main guerrilla armies with left-wing political ideologies operating in Colombia. Initially a Marxist-Leninist nationalist movement, it now appears more focused on kidnapping, extortion and attacks on economic infrastructure. And while it eschewed drug trafficking for decades, it has recently been linked to the narcotics trade and has sought alliances with large drug trafficking organizations. Militarily, it has been greatly debilitated and has dropped from an estimated 5,000 soldiers in the early 1990s to a force believed to number around 2,500 fighters.

More ELN News

  • Venezuela Finds 4 Cocaine Labs in Border States

    So far this year Venezuelan authorities have dismantled 17 cocaine laboratories in the western states of Tachira and Zula, Defense Minister Tarek El Aissami said Wednesday.

  • 2011 Sees Over 300 Child Soldiers Demobilize in Colombia

    Colombian authorities say 328 child soldiers have demobilized from illegal armed groups so far this year. 

  • NGO Details Guerrilla Presence in Venezuela

    Despite assurances by Colombia government that there are no rebel sanctuaries in Venezuela, the leader of a Venezuelan NGO has offered a firsthand account to several Colombian media outlets of FARC and ELN presence in the country.

  • Colombia: Photos Show Meeting of ELN Rebel Leaders

    The seizure of photos and files from the ELN, Colombia's second biggest guerrilla group, offers a glimpse of the workings of the rebel organization, often overshadowed by the rival FARC.

  • Colombia Rebels ELN Deny Drug Trafficking

    Colombian rebel group the ELN has denied that it is involved in drug trafficking, or that it takes refuge over the Venezuelan border.

  • ELN Suspects in Colombia Massacre

    An armed group killed eight villagers and wounded four others in a weekend raid on a bar in the southern department of Nariño, Colombian authorities announced.

  • Colombia ELN Rebels Climb Back Into the Fray

    Colombia’s ELN rebel group, often forgotten and underestimated, is increasing its strength thanks to a belated involvement in the drug trade, and alliances with both its guerrilla cousins the FARC, and a new generation of narco-paramilitary groups.

  • FARC Computers Shine Spotlight on Chavez Militias

    Reheated reports that Colombia's biggest guerrilla group the FARC trained pro-Chavez militia groups in Venezuela, while not new, are a reminder of the proliferation of irregular forces in the socialist country.

  • The War of Words Over Colombia's Conflict

    Colombian President Juan Manuel Santos' talk of an "armed conflict" has stirred controversy in Colombia for appearing to recognize guerrilla group the FARC as a political organization. Behind the wordplay is a key question: Is Colombia fighting terrorists, or waging a civil war?

  • Brief: ELN Talks Peace

    On April 16, the National Liberation Army (Ejercito de Liberacion Nacional - ELN) released a statement on their website, Voices of Colombia, referring again to their desire to see a "political solution" to the Colombian conflict. The release is signed by ELN commander Nicolas Rodriguez Bautista, alias "Gabino," who'd made similar statements last October in a video uploaded to Youtube. This is only the latest in a series of communications from the ELN and the Revolutionary Armed Forces of Colombia (Fuerzas Armadas Revolucionarias de Colombia - FARC) signaling that the top levels of rebel command are interested in a dialogue with the government. Notably, during a peace conference held in Buenos Aires between February 21 and 23, former Colombian Senator Piedad Cordoba presented statements from the ELN and from Guillermo Leon Saenz Vargas, "Alfonso Cano," which also affirmed the rebels' interest in "talking" with the government. It is doubtful however that President Juan Manuel Santos will respond before the rebels back up the talk with firmer commitments, such as the release of all political hostages, or the declaration of a ceasefire.

    Investigations

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