Tag Archives: cauca

Caught in a Colombian Crossfire

Many Colombians were concerned that President Andrés Pastrana’s recent suspension of peace talks between the government and the Revolutionary Armed Forces of Colombia (FARC) would dramatically escalate the civil conflict. Their fears appeared to be well founded when the Colombian military initiated a massive bombing campaign against the former zona de despeje before sending in thousands of ground troops to retake the zone’s principal towns. The FARC retaliated by launching an extensive bombing campaign against urban targets and the country’s infrastructure. But for indigenous groups in the southwestern department of Cauca, the violence began escalating long before the collapse of the peace process. In recent years, both paramilitary and guerrilla forces have increasingly violated the neutrality of indigenous reserves, known as resguardos.

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