(Photo: Ingenieros Militares)

Colombia’s armed forces has found a hideout containing 50 landmines belonging to the country’s second rebel group ELN in the northeast of the country, the Defense Ministry said Sunday. 

The landmines were found in the municipality of Tona, Santander.

According to the ministry, the hideout filled with 50 explosives was abandoned by the rebel group over a year ago due to the military pressure of Colombia’s armed forces in the region where the mines were found.

The landmines were detonated in a controlled manner by Special Forces of the army.

Colombia is one of 161 countries worldwide to have signed the 1997 Ottowa Agreement, declaring the use of landmines a human rights violation. And yet, landmines still feature prominently in the Colombian countryside, according to a report compiling 23 years of the devices’ reported effects in Colombia.

Since 1990, there have been close to 40,000 documented incidents involving landmines in Colombia, according to a report released in September by a presidential program designed to monitor and deal with Colombia’s landmine problem.

MORE: Report breaks down 23 years of landmines in Colombia

Tona, Santander


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