January 4, 1999

Top Shining Path military leader captured, Peru paper reports


                  LIMA, Peru (AP) -- Peru's anti-terrorism police have captured the Maoist
                  Shining Path rebels' top military leader in the capital, the country's leading
                  newspaper reported Monday.

                  Juan Carlos Rios was captured Dec. 31 in Lima's industrial slum of Vitarte,
                  where he was in charge of organizing workers and neighborhood networks
                  for the group, the El Comercio newspaper reported, citing police sources.

                  Police have not confirmed or denied the capture.

                  Rios had been captured in 1992 as he led strike by workers in Lima's port
                  city of Callao, but he later escaped prison by switching names with the help
                  of his lawyer, police say.

                  Peru's bloody war against the Shining Path and pro-Cuban Tupac Amaru
                  Revolutionary movement has left 30,000 dead since 1980. However,
                  political violence has fallen sharply since the capture of top rebel leaders
                  starting in 1992.

                  Shining Path rebels continue to operate in remote parts of Peru's north and
                  central jungle, and agents have tried to rebuild shattered networks in some
                  Lima shantytowns, military analysts say.

                  Copyright 1999 The Associated Press.