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Colombia Experiences Growing Relief Over Migrating Drug Cartels

The struggle over power in Colombia could take a different turn as the country is set to hold elections. For a number of years, this country has been in the middle of a battle between Fuerzas Armadas Revolucionarias de Colombia (FARC) – left-wing insurgencies that are also the strongest – and the increasing power of the drug cartels.

According to a Chatham House article, these two very different groups are motivated by different things. The problem as of late is they have become increasingly entangled. The massive amounts of money generated by the narco trade has been channeled to fund insurgency, terrifying the central government for years.

The migration of the drug activity to the north has provided some relief for Colombia. Mexico has become the destination of choice, given its proximity to the industry’s largest customer: the United States. Mexico also offers an attraction for drug trafficking due to the large number of Mexicans who move back and forth between their country and the U.S.

Ciudad Juarez, sitting right along the U.S. border, is considered to be the heart of the current power struggle between drug cartels supplying the American market. As a result, this is the destination for most of the fighting between drug gangs. In Colombia, most powerful cartels were destroyed in the 1980s and early 1990s. In addition, the new generation appears to be less prone to street violence.

It is certainly considered by many to be a gain for Colombia that drug cartels are gaining power in Mexico. The rise in American involvement as the main supplier of the weapons used in street battles and the total failure of the U.S. war on drugs have helped to fuel the problem in Mexico, while extending relief to Colombia.

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