Colombia’s FARC rebel central command Friday condemned an attack by its own guerrillas that left a civilian dead, highlighting possible divisions within the group as it attempts to negotiate peace.
“Those responsible never intended to cause injury to the non-combatant civilian population,” the FARC secretariat said in a statement on its website.
But that does not “exclude its responsibility for the lack of foresight” in the attack.
FARC expressed “repudiation and condemnation” of the car bomb attack in the Valle de Cauca region last week that killed the civilian and also injured more than 20 people.
The statement said FARC will apply “appropriate disciplinary actions.”
FARC’s chief negotiator Ivan Marquez Thursday accused President Juan Manuel Santos of escalating the war in Colombia even as his government engages in peace talks.
His comments came during a week in which 26 rebels were reported killed in fighting in Colombia.
Santos has vowed to keep pressure on the FARC even as his government negotiates with the group in Havana.
Some analysts, however, say the biggest threat to the peace process would be a FARC attack creating a heavy civilian toll — something the FARC central leadership may not have ordered but may not be able to prevent.
Analysts point to reports of continued FARC civilian abductions, despite a pledge before peace talks to end the practice, as one example of dissident factions within the group defying leadership.[Full story]