Colombia’s Semana published an article today in which it claims that Maduro has personally given orders to Venezuela’s security services to not confront guerrilla groups in the country, based on “secret” documents.
According to Semana, the documents that contain the order came from the Servicio Bolivariano de Inteligencia Nacional (National Bolivarian Intelligence Service, SEBIN) and the National Bolivarian Armed Forces (FANB). Semana claims that the documents contain coded language instructing officials to avoid contact with guerrilla groups operating inside Venezuela, including the FARC and the ELN.
One of the documents is dated August 9, and is signed by Admiral Remigio Ceballos, the strategic commander of the FANB. The document is address to “commanding generals” at the FANB and the National Guard, and reads:
[I am letting you know] very respectfully through this communique that, by order of president Nicolas Maduro Moros, you should avoid engaging in confrontation with personnel from red groups in the training and supply zones starting on 080106002019 until further notice.
According to Semana, the words “red groups” are coded language referencing left-wing guerrillas, and that the number string means August 10, 2019 starting at 6:00 AM.
Another document appears to be a response to a request from Maduro to the armed forces to estimate the number guerrilla fighters operating in Venezuela. The document states that there could be as many as 2,000 fighters in the country, and that 15 to 20% of that number are Venezuelan-born.
Arguably the most damming document contains instructions for Venezuelan army assets in the states bordering Colombia to provide “training and logistical support” to Colombian guerrilla groups operating in those areas. The document states:
… in accordance with orders from High Command, National Bolivarian Guard units and National Bolivarian Militia Units in the jurisdictions of Zulia, Apure, Amazonas, and Merida states are ordered to coordinate in order to provide training and logistical support to members of the Red Group that operate there until further notice.
Venezuela’s support for Colombian leftist guerrilla dates back to the Chavez years. Semana’s article contains the most damming evidence of Maduro’s support for the groups to date.
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