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Two FARC rebels killed in combat just days after peace deal with Colombian gov't

EL DIAMANTE, COLOMBIA - SEPTEMBER 24:  Revolutionary Armed Forces of Colombia (FARC) rebels depart their camp following the 10th Guerrilla Conference in the remote Yari plains where the peace accord was ratified by the FARC on September 24, 2016 in El Diamante, Colombia. The peace agreement attempts to end the 52-year-old guerrilla war between the FARC and the state, the longest-running armed conflict in the Americas which has left 220,000 dead. The final agreement is set to be signed on September 26 and will then be put to vote by the public in a referendum on October 2. The plan calls for a disarmament and re-integration of most of the estimated 7,000 FARC fighters.  (Photo by Mario Tama/Getty Images)

EL DIAMANTE, COLOMBIA - SEPTEMBER 24: Revolutionary Armed Forces of Colombia (FARC) rebels depart their camp following the 10th Guerrilla Conference in the remote Yari plains where the peace accord was ratified by the FARC on September 24, 2016 in El Diamante, Colombia. The peace agreement attempts to end the 52-year-old guerrilla war between the FARC and the state, the longest-running armed conflict in the Americas which has left 220,000 dead. The final agreement is set to be signed on September 26 and will then be put to vote by the public in a referendum on October 2. The plan calls for a disarmament and re-integration of most of the estimated 7,000 FARC fighters. (Photo by Mario Tama/Getty Images)  (2016 Getty Images)

Two guerrillas belonging to the Revolutionary Armed Forces of Colombia (FARC) were killed in combat with security forces just four days after a new peace deal was signed to end a half century of fighting.

In a statement, the Colombian Army said that the deaths occurred as a result of a manhunt for what it thought were members of the smaller National Liberation Army (ELN, for its name in Spanish) who had reportedly been extorting local ranchers and businesses in a lawless area of northern Bolivar state.

But a third gunman captured said he and his fellow gunmen belonged to the FARC's 37th front.

According to The Guardian, senior FARC leader Iván Márquez said the fighters were heading to the concentration zone.

The government is trying to preemptively stem any fallout saying the rebels were 42 miles from where they are gathering to turn over their weapons to United Nations-sponsored peace monitors.

The government’s chief negotiator Humberto de la Calle said the incident underlines the need for a speedy resolution, the Guardian also reported.

“There is a discrepancy in the narratives. That doesn’t matter, but what is important is the lesson: [the ceasefire] is fragile; we cannot delay,” he told the paper.

With reporting by the Associated Press.

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