Major Blow to Shining Path: Two Top Leaders Killed in Peru

By Dialogo
August 13, 2013

Two top military leaders of Shining Path were killed by the Peruvian Army during confrontations in the jungles of Peru on August 11, signifying a blow that destroys the leadership of this guerrilla group, President Ollanta Humala said.

“We believe that this operation has destroyed Shining Path’s leadership,” Humala added, explaining that according to intelligence they are identified as Alejandro Borda Casafranca, aka ‘Comrade Alipio’, and Marco Antonio Quispe Palomino, aka ‘Comrade Gabriel’, although DNA tests will be conducted to confirm these findings.

The Peruvian president also reported a third neutralized guerrilla: ‘Comrade Alfonso’, right-hand man of Alipio. This blow joins others suffered by the group in the past months. In February 2012, the Army captured Florindo Flores Hala, aka ‘Comrade Artemio’, Shining Path’s leader in the Alto Huallaga valley, in the country’s northwestern jungle area, who was sentenced to life imprisonment in June.

‘Comrade Gabriel’ is the youngest brother of Víctor Quispe Palomino, currently top leader of Shining Path in the Apurímac, Ene and Mantaro Rivers valley (VRAEM), a large jungle area covering the southeast and central jungles of the country, the main area of coca leaf cultivation used to produce cocaine.

Drug trafficking gangs operate with the remnants of the Shining Path in that location, and use the area as a shelter after its founder Abimael Guzmán was captured in 1992 and sentenced to life in prison, which signified the disruption and defeat of the Shining Path in the mid 1990s.

The three Shining Path members were killed during a confrontation that took place in Llochegua, Ayacucho region.