The capture of Abimael Guzman
and other key subversive leaders on September 12, 1992, was a stab into the heart of Shining Path (SL) —the most bloodthirsty and cruel terrorist group Peru has ever seen.
According to Interior Minister Carlos Moran, Guzman
's arrest drastically affected the group's political direction and fighting capacity against the Peruvian State.
In statements to Andina news agency
, he explained that leaving Shining Path without its leader —because of his apprehension, on a day like today 27 years ago— has no parallel in global anti-terrorism history.
"The capture of (Abimael) Guzman was a turning point in the struggle against terrorism because, for the first time in the world's history, the leader and leading members
of a still-active terrorist organization had been captured. In fact, it was a stab into the terrorist organization's heart," he said.
Moran, who in 1992 was a member of the National Police Special Intelligence Group (GEIN)
, best known for the successful execution of operation Victoria (Victory), affirmed that Shining Path's planning and continuation of terror activities at a national level were affected as a result of Guzman's detention.
"It (the detention) occurred in the right moment as —according to them— they planned actions against the country," he added.
"This resulted in a gradual decline in the terrorist organization's operations from that date onwards."
The minister asserted that some SL supporters attempted to negotiate a peace agreement, as was the case of Florindo Flores Hala, known as "Comrade Artemio."
On the other hand, Oscar Ramirez Durand, who is commonly known as Comrade Feliciano, remained firm in his intention to continue carrying out terror activities.
Guzman's arrest was also important because the leader embodied everything about Shining Path: He was the head of the group's Central Committee and Political Bureau, among other posts, and "had to supervise every process and action."