Criminal groups have caused massive forced displacements in three communities in Colombia, according to government welfare group Accion Social.
In Caceres, northern Antioquia, 20 families fled their homes after four community members were murdered by the neo-paramilitary group “Aguilas Negras“. 17 of the families were indigenous people of Zenu ethnicity, and three others were local farmers from the Campanario community.
At the same time, a total of 61 people between 15 families left their homes in the municipality of Policarpa, Nariño department due to ongoing fighting between “Rocas Campesinas”, who are a stem of “Los Rastrojos,” and the FARC.
Accion Social have said that the 15 families have sought refuge with relatives or friends due to the ongoing fight for territorial control between the two groups. In recent days, members of “Rocas Campesinas” drew families from their homes, confiscated phones, goods and food, prohibited the entry or exit of locals and threatened them not to speak to authorities..
The third displacement occurred in the municipality of Puerto Libertador, in the Cordoba department where 47 people from 13 families have been forced off their land after drunk members of the Aguilas Negras gang began shooting indiscrimantly at civilians in the main square.
The emergency department of Accion Social arrived at the town shortly after to give assistance to affected families and assess the situation.
According to the Ministry of Defence, during the first quarter of 2011, 10,268 people were forcibly displaced due to conflict.
There are an estimated 3.7 million internally displaced people in Colombia, the head of Unit of Displacement and Forced Disappearances, Elsa Moyano said in March.