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Colombian Paramilitaries Disarm


More than 1,700 paramilitary fighters in Colombia have surrendered their weapons as part of a peace deal negotiated with the government.

Authorities say 1,765 members of the rightist United Self-Defense Forces of Colombia, or AUC, handed over their arms Tuesday in the town of Casibare, in Meta province. Colombian peace negotiator Luis Carlos Restrepo presided over the handover ceremony.

The handover brings to about 30,000 the number of paramilitaries who have disarmed.

The move took place as authorities announced the discovery of 32 bodies in mass graves near the town of Tibu, close to Venezuela. Paramilitaries have been blamed for those deaths.

Colombia has been mired in a long-running conflict involving the paramilitaries, leftist rebels and the government. The conflict leaves thousands dead each year.

Some information for this report was provided by AP and Reuters.
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