San Salvador — The Salvadoran government has taken Col. Adolfo Arnaldo Majano, the former member of the governing junta, into custody after a two-month search. Monitor Latin America correspondent James Nelson Goodsell writes that the arrest of Colonel Majano will strengthen the joint military-civilian government in El Salvador, since it eliminates a potential source of rivalry.
Colonel Majano, who has been regarded as the most liberal member of the junta which came to power in October 1979, was viewed as a possible leader of an opposition force to the junta, now headed by Christian Democratic leader Jose Napoleon Duarte. The details of his capture have not been disclosed, but he was apparently located here in the capital.
When he was ousted from the junta by his fellow members and the military high command, Colonel Majano went into hiding. There were persistent reports that he was aligning himself with the leftist guerilla forces that are bent on bringing down the junta.
Colonel Majano had been seen as the key reformer in the junta -- and largely responsible for the agrarian reform program that aims to break the centuries-old landholding patterns in El Salvador.
But his removal from the junta came when he took actions that were regarded as unilateral, without the support of other junta members, and b egan speaking out separately from the junta.