FACTBOX - Eight devastating consequences of Colombia's war

by Anastasia Moloney | @anastasiabogota | Thomson Reuters Foundation
Tuesday, 5 April 2016 22:23 GMT

In this 2014 file photo, Colombian guard where five soldiers were killed by Revolutionary Armed Forces of Colombia (FARC) rebels in a rural area of Santander de Quilichao, Colombia. REUTERS/Jaime Saldarriaga

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Colombia has the second highest number of landmine casualties and other facts about the country's protracted war

By Anastasia Moloney

BOGOTA, April 5 (Thomson Reuters Foundation) - Colombians hope a peace deal between the government and the country's biggest rebel group, the Revolutionary Armed Forces of Colombia (FARC), will bring five decades of conflict to an end.

The government and FARC, whose ranks have fallen to some 8,000 fighters, have for more than three years held talks in Cuba to stop the fighting that has killed more than 220,000 people.

Although the two sides failed to reach a self-imposed deadline for a final accord last month, the government remains hopeful an agreement can be reached.

In another sign of hope, Colombia said in March that it would begin formal peace talks with the Andean nation's second largest guerilla group, the National Liberation Army (ELN), moving the country a step closer to peace.

Here are eight humanitarian consequences of Colombia's war.

* There are 7.6 war victims registered on the government's official register, the majority of whom have been forcibly driven from their homes by the warring sides.

* With 6.7 million people displaced, Colombia has one of the world's highest displaced populations.

* More then 230,000 children have been forced to flee their homes since peace talks with the FARC began in November 2012.

* Around 7,850 child soldiers have fought in rebel and paramilitary ranks.

* Over the decades, rebel groups have planted landmines to push back government troops making Colombia quite literally a minefield. It's not known exactly where all the landmines are.

* After Afghanistan, Colombia has the second highest number of landmine casualties, with 11,400 people killed or injured by landmines since 1990.

* Rape has been used as weapon of war by all factions. Nearly 14,000 women, men and children have been victims of sexual violence.

* At least 40,000 Colombians have disappeared without trace during the conflict.

Sources: Colombian government's victims' unit, International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC), United Nations Children's Agency (UNICEF).

(Reporting by Anastasia Moloney, editing by Katie Nguyen.; Please credit the Thomson Reuters Foundation, the charitable arm of Thomson Reuters, that covers humanitarian news, women's rights, trafficking, corruption and climate change. Visit http://news.trust.org)

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