Recent footage of Dutch-born FARC guerrilla Tanja Nijmeijer was shot in total freedom, without any censorship or external pressure, journalist Jorge Enrique Botero has told Radio Netherlands Worldwide. He said he was able to record the video in a jungle camp of the Colombia terrorist movement without any interference.
Immediately after clips from his video recordings were published on the RNW website a sharp-worded online discussion flared up around the possibility that Botero was a mere FARC mouthpiece. But the Colombian journalist emphasises that he was editorially independent, no pressure was exercised either on him or on his interviewees. He said that the FARC did not ask to be shown the material, either.
The only requirement made by the guerilla movement was that Mr Botero should take care when travelling to the rebel camp where Dutchwoman Tanja Nijmeijer was staying, in order to prevent the Colombian army from tracing the location.
Mr Botero is working on a documentary about the FARC and Ms Nijmeijer. He ventured into the Colombian jungle in August and spoke to FARC leader Mono Jojoy and to Tanja Nijmeijer.
Just a few weeks later Mono Jojoy was killed in a major attack by the Colombian military; the fate of Tanja Nijmeijer is unknown. Fragments of the documentary were published this and last week by Radio Netherlands Worldwide.