A new book published by London-based think tank the International Institute for Strategic Studies (IISS) suggests that Ecuadorian President Rafael Correa personally “solicited” and “accepted” campaign money from the FARC. The study also describes how the FARC developed a close relationship with high-ranking Venezuelan officials, including Venezuelan intelligence and President Hugo Chavez.
The IISS analysis is based on a study of computer files confiscated from the encampment of deceased FARC commander, alias “Raul Reyes.” He was killed in an air raid on Ecuadorian territory in March 2008.
As InSight has detailed in a timeline, the alleged revelations from the Reyes computer files caused a breakdown in Colombia’s relations with its neighbors. Based on data from the seized files, President Alvaro Uribe accused Correa of accepting $100,000 in campaign money from the FARC. Correa has argued that this transaction took place without his approval, a claim that is contradicted in the IISS report.
Since 2008, other powerful figures across the region been also implicated in the Reyes computer files — President Daniel Ortega in Nicaragua, Senator Piedad Cordoba in Antioquia (later banned from office), and the top levels of Venezuelan intelligence and military. As the New York Times reports, the IISS describes training that the FARC gave to a pro-Chavez militia, the Bolivarian Liberation Forces.