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The Colombian Armed Conflict (Civil War - 1964 - Present)

For the past 5 decades Colombia has been in a long and deadly period of civil strife, much of it fuled by cocaine. But how did this happen? And what are the consequences?

Kieran Coote

on 22 October 2012

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Transcript of The Colombian Armed Conflict (Civil War - 1964 - Present)

photo credit Nasa / Goddard Space Flight Center / Reto Stöckli Colombian Armed Conflict (1964 - Present) Location Of The Conflict Colombia is a large country located in South America
The country gained independence from Spain some time in the 1800's and has remained a soverign nation ever since
Despite being in the middle of a violent civil war, the country is highly developed and its people have a high standard of living Up to the Civil War Colombia, like many countries in South America was origionally very very unequal and segregated, A problem that still exists to this day.

Many poorer families who lived in the countryside and the thick rainforests often rebeled against the government.

The poorer people, many of whom were farmers felt like the government were only working for the rich, white Spanish people that resided in the country. Due to this the poorer people set up an insurgency group called the FARC, and another called ELN Leading up to the Civil War (Continued) At the same time the rich in society as well as vigilante groups started to set up their own groups to crush the poorer rebels, who were using their military influence to disrupt the government, and try to destabilise the country, Many of the poorer people wanted a revolution, although that didn't hapen.

The government in Colombia has always been weak and has also always just brushed things like this under the carpet. But in the mid 1960's the government took a different approach. Kill the enemy. Many poorer people started to dissapear, tortured, raped and killed by the government What Happened Next? The rebels weren't happy, they then started to fight the government, and the conflict quickly escalated. And since 1964 Colombia has been in a state of war.

The situation was at it's worst in the 1970's and 1980's. During this time infamous drugloards such as Pablo Escobar ravaged the rainforests, killing any of those who aligned with the government. The war has been violently fulled by the most infamous drug on the planet. Cocaine. Colombia is the only country to produce it in bulk, and with consumption tripling in the 1970's and 1980's the drug lords had a more or less unlimited supply of money. The Scale Of The Conflict The conflict is major. To date over 3 million people have been displaced by the fighting. Many now living in Bogota and Medellin. Safe havens compared to the countryside. 3,500 People were also kidnapped by drug lords in 2000, a massive increase from the 400 in 2006. On average 5,400 people are killed yearly by gunfire, murders, kidnappings and bombs.

There is good news though. Since 1991 the conflict has been dying down, and many rebel groups are now disarmed or now non-existant. Then umber of deaths has also been falling, and cocaine production has dropped dramaticlly from its high in the 1980's How Is Colombia Today
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