Demobilized guerrillas (Photo El Espectador)

A FARC commander demobilized along with 15 other rebel fighters in the southwest of Colombia, the country’s Navy said on Tuesday.

According to a Navy press release, the demobilization was initiated by the unit’s leader and included two minors of age.

The unit of the country’s largest rebel group FARC was active near the rural municipality of Tumaco where they were mostly involved in extortion and protection racketeering schemes of local businesses.

Demobilized unit leader “El Burro” reportedly also was involved in forced recruitment of minors in the area.

MORE: FARC systematically recruits child soldiers: Study

The former rebel fighters gave up several arms like an AK 47 rifle and revolvers as well as a motor-boat, said the Navy.

Two of the reasons for the demobilization were the recent capture of precedent unit leader alias “Mario Lata” and a strong military offensive in the area during December, the military institution added.

The 14 demobilized adults will participate in the program of the Colombian Agency for Reintegration while the two minors were handed over to the National Institute for Family Welfare.

The ACR is currently making preparations for the possible reintegration of some 30,000 demobilization of rebel fighters in the event the FARC and ELN reach agreement with the government about ending the almost 50-year armed conflict between leftist rebel groups and the state.

Location of the demobilization


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