Brazilian Lawmaker Wants Colombia’s FARC Labeled ‘Terrorists’

By Dialogo
November 29, 2011

A social democratic lawmaker said on November 28 he planned to ask the Brazilian Congress to brand Colombia’s leftist Revolutionary Armed Forces of Colombia (FARC) rebels as “terrorists’ ahead of the 2014 FIFA World Cup and 2016 Summer Olympics.

Otavio Leite, of the Brazilian Social Democracy Party (PSDB), said his bill would make it possible to classify the “type of danger this group represents for Brazilians.”

Manuel Martinez, a PSDB spokesman said Leite would submit his bill in Brasilia and “will ask for prompt examination.”

The Brazilian government does not officially view FARC as a terrorist group.

“Ahead of imminent major sporting events such as the World Cup and the Olympic Games (which it will host), Brazil is beset by organized crime which obtains its goods from several localized groups which have been identified in the border areas,” Leite said.

He specifically expressed concern about “constant FARC incursions in the country, its dispatch of drugs to Rio narcotraffickers and its enslavement of Brazilian Indians.”

In his statement, he said his bill was crucial to enable Brazil to finalize ongoing investments in land, sea and air defense projects.

Leite said this would also reduce the chances that FARC could mount hostile actions during the 2014 World Cup and the 2016 Summer Olympic Games.