Five dead confirmed in clashes between gangs in southwest Colombia
Colombian authorities confirmed Friday that five people died in clashes between criminal gangs in the municipality of Jamundí (southwest) after the community denounced that an armed group entered a rural area last night.
"There were five casualties, two incinerated vehicles and one affected by explosive devices, we are under investigation. There are already units, 230 soldiers controlling the area," Andrés Felipe Ramírez, mayor of Jamundí, municipality of the Valle del Cauca department, told reporters.
The official said that the deceased "are not part of Jamundí" and that the confrontation was the struggle between gangs to "control the territory", including those formed by FARC dissidents.
"We have about 1,000 hectares of illicit crops and we ask the National Government that Jamundí be included in a strategic zone of integral intervention. We cannot continue behind this problem," he added.
Moments earlier, the Mayor's Office of Jamundí reported that he was verifying the information received by the community that "an armed group entered the area around 11.00 p.m. (04.00 GMT on Friday) on motorcycles in La Meseta."
In the area where the confrontation occurred there is the presence of the FARC dissidents, common crime gangs and drug traffickers.
Valle del Cauca, Cauca and Nariño, the departments of southwestern Colombia, are three of the regions that have more hectares planted with coca, which generates violence because illegal groups seek to control the routes to take cocaine to foreign markets .
Marijuana crops are also in these departments and from there the drug traffickers ship overland to market them in Bogotá and other areas of the center of the country.
On October 18, the police reported the murder of four people in a rural area of Jamundí.
The four bodies were found at the entrance of a farm in the Guachinte farmhouse.