Paramilitary successor groups in Colombia have become a major threat to Colombia's economy and human rights record, according to a report issued by Human Rights Watch.
The groups, which formed after the Colombian government tried to disband paramilitary groups such as the United Self-Defense Forces of Colombia (AUC) in the mid-2000s, are involved in the Colombian cocaine trade as well as human rights abuses such as massacres, forced displacement and rape.
"Whatever you call these groups — whether paramilitaries, gangs, or some other name — their impact on human rights in Colombia today should not be minimized," said José Miguel Vivanco, Americas director at Human Rights Watch. "Like the paramilitaries, these successor groups are committing horrific atrocities, and they need to be stopped."
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