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| 10/15/2010 12:00:00 AM

Colombian rebel comes in from the jungle

October 15--Colombia has been plagued by civil conflict for decades. Left-wing rebels continue to wage their long guerrilla war and there are still right-wing paramilitary groups, but thousands of fighters have put down their weapons and are seeking a new life.

I met Claudia at a school in the Colombian city of Medellin. She is 27 years old, the mother of a young child and a former guerrilla fighter.

She was wearing a purple T-shirt and jeans when we met, with her hair tightly braided. She looked, I suppose, very much like students look the world over - but her story is anything but usual.

Before I tell you Claudia's story, though, I should tell you something about Medellin.
You may have heard of it as one of the most dangerous cities in the world, the former stronghold of the notorious drugs lord Pablo Escobar.

But Pablo Escobar was shot dead by police back in 1993, and that was when the tide of violence began to turn.
 
Read more here.

Semana International delivers news about Colombia in English. Find more in our home.

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