The Miami Herald
December 19, 1998

Guatemalan commander who founded
Rebel Armed Forces apologizes

             GUATEMALA CITY -- (EFE) -- A former rebel commander apologized Friday
             for his actions during Guatemala's three decades of armed conflict.

             In an article appearing in Friday's edition of the daily Siglo Veintiuno, Cesar
             Montes, who founded the Rebel Armed Forces and Guerrilla Army for the Poor in
             1962, said, ``I ask forgiveness.''

             Both organizations disappeared after the signing of a peace agreement between the
             government and rebels on Dec. 29, 1996.

             Montes' groups were part of the Guatemalan National Revolutionary Unity
             (URNG), which was officially registered as a political party on Friday.

             Montes is the first rebel to use the news media to ask the public for forgiveness.