11 rebels, seven Colombian troops killed

Colombia's armed forces bombed a rebel base camp on Monday and killed at least 11 leftist insurgents in an area in the north near the Venezuelan border, military sources said Monday.

"A camp was found with about 80 bandits. Support was brought in from the Air Force and the police came in. So far, 11 bodies have been found," Army 30th Brigade General Fernando Pineda told reporters.

Two police were injured of the operation in Norte de Santander, he added.

Just hours earlier, seven army troops were killed in a clash with leftist rebels in southern Colombia, Defense Minister Juan Carlos Pinzon said.

Pinzon said leftist insurgents attacked the military patrol on a rural road in Caloto, Cauca department as it was transporting supplies to another group of troops.

"They were cruelly attacked with explosives," the defense chief said on a visit to the city of Cali.

Authorities blamed the Revolutionary Armed Forces of Colombia (FARC), Latin America's largest and longest fighting insurgency. The FARC has about 8,000 men under arms, according to official data.


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