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Internet plug pulled on Colombia's guerrillas
Internet plug pulled on Colombia's
3:05pm EDT, 9/26/96
BOGOTA, Colombia - A Colombian guerrilla group currently
involved in a bloody offensive in the mountains and
suffered a setback in its propaganda battle when its
voice on the Internet was mysteriously silenced.
The Revolutionary Armed Forces of Colombia (FARC), which
has periodically paralyzed half the country with road
found its route to the information superhighway barred.
The Communist insurgents, who rose up in arms in 1964,
embraced new technology last year in their fight to
government by launching a home page on the Internet.
But in unexplained circumstances, which a spokeswoman for
Mexico City-based Internet provider Teesnet said may or
not be linked to external pressures, the plug was pulled
service Monday -- a day after being publicized in
leading daily, El Tiempo.
The FARC's Mexico City-based international spokesman Marco
LeDon CalarcDa admitted the loss of the Internet page was
serious reversal but vowed the computer-age conflict was
"This is an attack on freedom of expression because we
doing anything illegal. I cannot say exactly how it
the hand of the Colombian government is in this," he said.
"The FARC is used to difficulties and this is just the
challenge. One way or another we will get back on to the
The Colombian guerrillas used their worldwide web site to
publish their political magazine Resistencia, whose
banned in Colombia, and to offer explanations about their
FARC, labeled narcoguerrillas since the 1980s when U.S.
ambassador Lewis Tambs highlighted the group's alleged
connections with Colombia's drugs trade, have been dubbed
Cyberspace guerrillas since their appearance on the
"Cyberspace guerrillas may seem a fun name but I think it
pejorative and belittles what we're doing," said LeDon
"We are looking to topple the government and set up a new
"Using weapons naturally comes within the logic of the
struggle. Just fighting through the Internet would be like
rubber bullets. Not using it would be like continuing to
army with a 12-bore shotgun," he said.
In the four weeks since the FARC unleashed its latest
with an attack on a jungle base in southern Putumayo
more than 150 soldiers, police and civilians have died.