A group of armed men, remnants of the Shining Path terrorist organization, intercepted a group of tourists in the Cusco region last Saturday, without causing harm.
According to EFE news group, a source at the Quillabamba police station in Cusco said the terrorists intercepted a group of German and Americans tourists who traveled by foot to the archaeological complex of Choquequirao, known as the ‘second Machu Picchu,’ and known for its remoteness.
The insurgents – more than a dozen, all very young – were armed with rifles, Uzi machine guns and rocket launchers, according to staments made by local tour guides to the police.
According to the police station source, the group of rebels made rounds in the area of Choquequirao and when they came across tourists they ordered them to hand over their food, cameras and other equipment.
So far, these encounters have been relatively peaceful and have not resulted in injuries or standoffs.
According to local newspaper Correo, one of the tourists said the rebels had their faces fully exposed and did not abused anyone.
"We weren’t attacked, they did not hurt anyone, but they asked us for money and things that could serve the revolution. They had rifles, rocket launchers, and they said they had been the group that killed five soldiers in the Valley of the river Apurimac and Ene, on the day of the election," said the tourist to Correo.
"First we were intercepted by about five rebels, then in the evening four came to our camp. They were very young and said they were about thirty.”
The insurgents never said they were from the Shining Path, instead they claimed they were members of the Communist Party of Peru and its leader was "Feliciano", a nickname given to Oscar Ramirez, former Shining Path leader, now behind bars.