Colombian troops kill 13 guerrillas

Bogota, Jul 23 (EFE).- Government forces killed a total of 13 leftist guerrillas on Tuesday in separate operations, sources in the Colombia Defense Ministry told Efe.

Twenty other rebels were captured.

Of the 13 dead, eight belonged to the National Liberation Army, or ELN, and five were members of the 27th Front of the Revolutionary Armed Forces of Colombia, known by the Spanish initials FARC.

All the ELN members were intercepted in the northeastern province of Arauca in an operation also involving police intelligence units, while the FARC rebels were killed in the central region of Meta in an exclusively military operation, the Defense Ministry said.

"This shows the offensive (operations) of our military forces and the police, who are working tirelessly against terrorism," Defense Minister Juan Carlos Pinzon said during a trip to the Tolemaida military base in the central province of Tolima.

The Defense Ministry told Efe that more guerrillas might be found and killed or captured in the near future in the operations in Arauca and Meta, which it called ongoing "reconnaisance work."