Iván Velásquez, Colombian Defense Minister, called for prudence until “there is verification” that allows “properly speaking about the issue” and added that the latest information available on alias ‘Iván Márquez’ is that “at some point he was in the national territory” after an attack of which he was the target in 2022.
By Valentina T. Sanchez
There is expectation in Colombia after the news program ‘CM&’, a well-known national outlet, reported that Luciano Marín, alias ‘Iván Márquez’, one of the former leaders of the extinct FARC guerrilla and leader of one of the main dissidents of that group would have died in Venezuelan territory.
The Colombian Defense Minister, Iván Velásquez, spoke about the news, but indicated that both the Government and the Military Forces are confirming the information.
“We are waiting for when we have confirmed news of this nature, we will inform you,” said the senior official in the middle of a meeting with journalists in the city of Buenaventura, in the Colombian Pacific.
Velásquez asked for prudence until “there is a verification” that allows “to speak properly about the issue” and added that The latest information available on ‘Iván Márquez’ is that “at some point he was in the national territory” after an attack he was targeted in 2022.
According to Army sources, checking the data is not an easy task, since the alleged death occurred outside Colombian territory.
The news from the Colombian media outlet ‘CM&’ was published by its director, the journalist Yamid Amat, who assured that the death would have occurred due to the injuries that ‘Iván Márquez’ suffered during an attackwhich occurred in 2022, against the camp where he was taking refuge, in Venezuelan territory.
According to the report by Amat and William Parra, on that occasion the guerrilla leader suffered serious injuries and it was even thought that he had lost his life. However, members of his dissidence, Segunda Marquetalia, confirmed at the time that he was still alive and had suffered only “small damages.”
Who is ‘Iván Márquez’?
Luciano Marín Arango was born on June 16, 1955 in Florencia, capital of the southern department of Caquetá. His record indicates that in the 1980s he was linked to the former FARC and in 2003 he became part of the Secretariat, the leadership of the extinct guerrilla.
He was a FARC negotiator in Havana and a signatory of the 2016 Peace Accords. Subsequently, he was appointed to occupy one of the ten seats guaranteed to ‘Comunes’, the political party that emerged after the negotiations.
However, he never held the position and in 2018 he left the space in which he resided as part of the agreements, arguing breaches by the Government, then headed by Iván Duque.
In 2019 he was expelled from the process after abandoning his security scheme. Then it became known that he took refuge in Venezuelan territory with other former FARC chiefs.
It was then that he announced that he was taking up arms again at the head of the dissidence called Segunda Marquetalia, in reference to the birthplace of the old criminal group, more than half a century ago.
In 2022, it was reported that he had allegedly died in an attack that, according to the official version, was committed by criminal gangs with which Segunda Marquetalia was fighting for control of drug trafficking on the border between Colombia and Venezuela.
However, the dissidence attributed the events to the Colombian Military Forces and denied the death. Subsequently, the Government of Gustavo Petro reported that ‘Marquez’ was alive, but “sick”.