RealNews

Second Faction Disarms in Columbia

Tired of war and wanting to return to their farms, a group of 160 Colombian paramilitary fighters handed over their weapons on Sunday, becoming the second faction of outlawed right-wing militias to do so in less than two weeks. “We don’t want to continue the war, nor do we want our children to do have to do so. We want to live in peace,” said Ruvinder Becoche, the commander of the Self-Defense Forces of Cauca. The militia fighters laid down their shotguns, machetes and explosives on a table as government officials and journalists looked on. President Uribe has been pursuing a twin strategy of waging war on the two leftist rebel groups while negotiating the demobilization of Colombia’s 12,000-strong paramilitary forces. The paramilitaries emerged in the 1980s to combat leftist rebels. On Nov. 25, some 855 paramilitary combatants disarmed in Colombia’s second largest city, Medellin. They were urban fighters who allegedly trafficked in drugs and committed extortion and murder. Full Story

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