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Nearly five tons of pot seized from FARC amid drug talks

Nearly five tons of marijuana held by Colombia's FARC rebels was seized, authorities said Tuesday, as ongoing negotiations between the guerillas and government are currently focused on illegal drugs. A total of 4,976 kilos of marijuana were seized from rural drug storage facilities in the central department of Meta, during an operation on Sunday, the the Anti-narcotics Police Directorate said. The operation also found and destroyed 4.9 hectares (12 acres) of marijuana.

Colombian rebels slam Santos for about-face on spying

Havana, Feb 8 (EFE).- Colombia's FARC guerrillas on Saturday criticized President Juan Manuel Santos' administration for abruptly reversing its position on the wiretapping of government peace negotiators. In a statement read to the media in this capital by its chief negotiator in the peace talks, the Revolutionary Armed Forces of Colombia, or FARC, said it could not accept the conclusion that the intelligence operation was within the bounds of the law.

Colombia's FARC rebels: no truce for elections

Colombia's FARC guerrilla movement said Friday it would not observe a ceasefire during legislative elections next month unless the government also agreed to a truce. President Juan Manuel Santos has repeatedly rejected rebel calls for a bilateral ceasefire, arguing that the FARC (Revolutionary Armed Forces of Colombia) would use it to regroup. The rebels, who have been in peace talks with the government since November 2012, have twice observed self-imposed ceasefires, most recently during the year-end holidays.

Colombia' Santos says spying was "totally legal"

Bogota, Feb 5 (EFE).- Barely 24 hours after accusing "dark forces" of being behind the wiretapping of government peace negotiators, Colombian President Juan Manuel Santos said Wednesday the surveillance is "totally legal." "They are intelligence operations that are contemplated within the intelligence law and there is nothing irregular about that," he said during a public event in Bogota.

Colombian rebels say Uribe behind spying on peace negotiators

Havana, Feb 5 (EFE).- Colombia's FARC rebels said Wednesday that former President Alvaro Uribe is behind an alleged espionage operation targeting the current government's peace negotiators, and indicated their delegates also have been spied upon. "Clearly Alvaro Uribe is behind all this. Don't forget Alvaro Uribe is public enemy No. 1 of peace in Colombia," FARC chief negotiator Ivan Marquez told reporters in the Cuban capital, seat of the peace talks.

Colombian rebels say Uribe behind spying on peace negotiators

Havana, Feb 5 (EFE).- Colombia's FARC rebels said Wednesday that former President Alvaro Uribe is behind an alleged espionage operation targeting the current government's peace negotiators, and indicated their delegates also have been spied upon. "Clearly Alvaro Uribe is behind all this. Don't forget Alvaro Uribe is public enemy No. 1 of peace in Colombia," FARC chief negotiator Ivan Marquez told reporters in the Cuban capital, seat of the peace talks.

Two officials sacked in Colombia army spying probe

Two Colombian military intelligence chiefs were sacked Tuesday after the president ordered a probe of claims an army unit spied on his negotiators holding peace talks with FARC rebels. President Juan Manuel Santos called the alleged eavesdropping an attempt by "obscure forces" to sabotage his efforts to end the half century old insurgency, denouncing it as "totally unacceptable."

Colombia investigating alleged army spying on peace talks

Colombian authorities are investigating allegations that an army intelligence unit spied on Bogota's delegation to peace talks with FARC rebels, a government source said Tuesday. The magazine Semana reported that the army set up the unit in 2012 to illegally intercept the communications of members of the government's negotiating team, among others. A source with the Colombian attorney general's office told AFP that an investigation into the alleged illegal eavesdropping has been underway for several weeks.

Colombia probes alleged army spying on peace talks

Colombia's President Juan Manuel Santos Tuesday ordered an investigation into allegations an army intelligence unit spied on his negotiators holding peace talks with the FARC rebel group. Santos called the alleged eavesdropping an attempt by "obscure forces" to sabotage his efforts to end the half century old insurgency, denouncing it as "totally unacceptable." He said he had instructed Defense Minister Juan Carlos Pinzon "to investigate this situation in depth: how far it reached, who was behind this, who was interested in taping our peace negotiators."

Colombia probes reported military spying of peace negotiators

By Helen Murphy BOGOTA (Reuters) - Colombia's President Juan Manuel Santos ordered an investigation into the apparent spying of his negotiating team at peace talks with Marxist FARC rebels and suggested that "dark forces" were trying to sabotage his bid to end five decades of war. Military intelligence operatives intercepted cellular phone communications of the government's representatives at talks with the FARC, or Revolutionary Armed Forces of Colombia, weekly news magazine Semana reported on Tuesday.
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