We inform the international community and to the Colombian people that: in the mountain ranges of Northern Nariño, our comrade Carlos Patiño, whom the people knew as “Caliche”, the famous Commander of the Jacobo Arenas mobile column, has died in combat. He died as he lived: fighting on the front line until the ultimate victory, for a new Colombia.
The life and work of Carlos was one of exemplary revolutionary integrity, alongside the likes of Ernesto Che Guevara, Camilo Cienfuegos, Martín Caballero and Isaias Pardo.
A revolutionary from an early age, he joined the ranks of the FARC-EP in the Eastern bloc. By his abilities and sacrifice he became a member and Commander of the guard units of the Secretariat, under the direct supervision of his mentor, our Commander in Chief, Manuel Marulanda Vélez.
His years of living and fighting beside comrade Manuel left a deep mark on Carlos. He learned from our Commander in Chief to overcome difficulties, to be always at the forefront, to be disciplined and consistent.
With the gift of command and the banner of combativeness, Carlos became a person of the vanguard, a true soldier of the cause.
In the Green House operation he became a giant, and his legend began to remove the dreams of the bourgeois army officials. The VIII Conference delegated the command of the newly created mobile column Jacobo Arenas to Carlos and as such, he toured much of the country, giving lectures on guerrilla warfare.
Carlos has always been an innovator. FARC-EP owes him many advancements in artillery, explosives, militia tactics, military procurement, mass work, and training of troops. His was the gift of leadership: always respected and loved by the guerrillas, the militias, militants and the civilian population.
Today the enemies of the people and the masters of war denounce Carlos as a bandit, but Indigenous peoples, peasants and the Afro-Colombian people of Cauca fondly remember the love of a kind, good man, firm and consistent in the defense of their interests.
The mountains of Cauca cry today the loss of the brave warrior, proud of what this son of the Eastern Plains planted deep in the region. Thousands of men and women were forged in the school of combat of Carlos currently thresh trails of the Southwest, ready to fulfill their tasks as members of the FARC-EP, knowing that they are the guardians of the legacy of Caliche.
Military commanders may wallow in the physical disappearance of our comrade, but we know very well that Caliche lives of Caldono, Jambaló, militias in the guerrilla resistance of Suarez and Mondomo, at the buzzer tatuco of Toribio in the armament of the popular masses of Silvia and Buenos Aires, in the unerring aim of Timbío sniper, in the growing resistance of masses that runs across the North of Caucathe Pacific, the Patía and the Colombian Massif, in the rebellion of the streets of Cali, Popayán and the capitals of the country.
FARC-EP fighters will pay Carlos the tribute which he wanted in life: to redouble our military preparedness, consolidate our structures at all levels, training and retraining every day of the guerrillas and the militias, consolidate our Clandestine Communist Party and the Bolivarian movement, and move forward with firm steps in the achievement of the dream that we have inherited from Jacobo and Manuel: achieve peace with social justice, a New Colombia, Patria Grande and socialism.
Comrade Carlos Patiño: Present and fighting! For our dead, a moment of silence, a lifetime of struggle and combat!
Secretariat of the Revolutionary Armed Forces of Colombia – People’s Army (FARC-EP)