BOGOTA – Six Revolutionary Armed Forces of Colombia, or FARC, guerrillas turned themselves in voluntarily to army troops in a rural area in the southern province of Caqueta, the army said Sunday.
The army’s offensive operations in that territory “allowed six members of the FARC to escape” from the guerrilla organization, the army said.
The surrender took place in the rural part of the municipality of La Montañita, some 500 kilometers (310 miles) south of Bogota, where members of an infantry battalion “took in the individuals who said they belonged to ... the FARC and expressed their desire to take advantage of the benefits the government is offering,” the army said.
The six rebels were “tired of the mistreatment to which they were subjected on the part of the leaders of the illegal armed organization,” the army added.
The deserters from the rebel ranks will be incorporated into the government’s program for members of illegal armed groups who lay down their arms.
In 2010, a total of 2,381 guerrillas demobilized in Colombia, 2,009 from the FARC, 359 from the National Liberation Army, or ELN, and the remaining 13 from other groups, official figures show.