Around 300 farmers were forced to flee their homes in Buenaventura, on Colombia’s Pacific coast, to escape heavy fighting between the armed forces and the FARC which started on May 19.
According to the Colombian human rights organization, CODHES, people living along the Yurumangui River fled to the villages of San Jose, San Antonio and Barranco, leaving fifteen people who refused to leave their homes.
The farmers made the decision to leave following visits to their villages by men in civilian clothing thought to be members of the FARC, who were “threatening the integrity of the people and their property.”
Clashes along the Yurumangui River allegedly erupted after a Colombian navy patrol boat sailed into a mine field which the navy attributed to the FARC’s 30th Front.
The explosions left one Colombian soldier dead and five wounded.