In recent weeks several civilians have been injured and thousands have been forcibly displaced as the armed conflict between the security forces and the Revolutionary Armed Forces (FARC) escalates in Cauca Department, Southern Colombia.
Over more than a week, fighting between the security forces and the FARC in the municipalities of Toribío, Jambaló, Caldono, Silva, Caloto, Miranda, Suárez, Morales and Argelia in Cauca Department have put the civilian population, including Indigenous, peasant farmer and Afro descendant communities, on the front line.
In Toribío, which has a large Indigenous population, at least 14 civilians, including medical personnel, have been injured, 400 have been forcibly displaced and over 80 homes have been damaged, according to the Office of the Human Rights Ombudsman. The injuries are believed to have been caused by FARC explosives. In Argelia, another explosion attributed to the FARC led to the death of a boy and injured several other people, including a girl, while some 1,500 civilians have been forced to flee their homes and 74 homes, a school and two community halls, have been severely damaged , according to the International Committee of the Red Cross. The Human Rights Ombudsman has warned of a humanitarian crisis in the area.