Brazil denies presence of Colombian rebels on its soil

March 7th, 2008 - 3:58 am ICT by admin  

Brasilia, March 7 (Xinhua) Brazil has rubbished Ecuadorian president’s claims that the Colombian rebel guerrilla group, the Revolutionary Armed Forces of Columbia (FARC), has camps on Brazilian territory. “I can guarantee that here in Brazil, we don’t have any camp of the FARC,” Brazil’s Justice Minister Tarso Genro said Thursday on a radio programme.

Ecuador’s President Rafeal Correa recently said during his visit to Brazil that he was suspecting that the FARC has some camps inside Brazilian territory.

Responding to that, the Brazilian minister said Colombians enter the country to buy provisions and that should not be misunderstood as FARC movement.

Genro also said if bases of the FARC discovered in Brazil, his government would act in accordance with laws to restrain the rebel group’s movement on Brazilian soil.

“More or less one year ago, we’ve discovered the presence of the FARC and repelled it. After that, nothing has repeated,” he added.

Tension between Colombia and its two neighbours has been escalating since Saturday when Colombian forces entered Ecuadorian territory in a raid on FARC rebels, killing the leftist group’s second-in-command Raul Reyes and at least 20 other rebels.

Following the incident, Ecuador and Venezuela broke diplomatic relations with Colombia and sent extra troops to their borders with that country. Venezuela also closed the border to trade.

Founded in 1964, FARC is the oldest and largest rebel group in Colombia, with some 10,000 fighters, and it has been fighting the Colombian state for over 40 years.

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