Colombian Military Forces Deal Blow to GAO in Guaviare

Colombian Military Forces Deal Blow to GAO in Guaviare

By Myriam Ortega/Diálogo
August 28, 2020

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In late June, in different operations conducted in the Colombian Amazon, units of Joint Task Force Omega (FUTCO, in Spanish) dealt a heavy blow to the finances of the organized armed group (GAO, in Spanish) Seventh Structure, the Colombian Military Forces’ General Command (CGFM, in Spanish) said.

On June 22, CGFM reported that Army troops, in cooperation with personnel from the Colombian National Police’s Anti-narcotics Directorate, found a lab with 499 kilograms of cocaine hydrochloride and 101 kg of coca base paste in a rural area of San José del Guaviare municipality, Guaviare department. In addition, service members found 8,120 liters of liquid and 1,275 kg of solid chemical materials, microwave ovens, fuel, machinery, and equipment. The facilities are believed to belong to the Seventh Structure GAO, which operates in the area.

Just days following this operation, military troops found two warehouses with 440 kg of coca base paste in the same municipality. The warehouses were near a campsite that could accommodate some 30 people, which is also believed to belong to the Seventh Structure, CGFM said in a press release on June 25.

The military confronted GAO members in both operations. No one was injured or captured.

Active since 2003, FUTCO consists of Army, Air Force, and Navy service members, and its mission is to fight against GAOs and transnational organized crime in the Caquetá, Meta, and Guaviare departments. From January 1 to July 13, according to information FUTCO provided to Diálogo, the unit eradicated 580 hectares of coca, and seized 21,789 liters of partially processed cocaine, 1,121 kg of coca base paste, 6,107 kg of coca leaf, and 21,399 liters of liquid and 24,092 kg of solid chemical materials used for illicit drug processing, among other items.