After last year’s landmark peace deal with the Colombian government, thousands of demobilised Farc guerrillas are set to descend on Cali. But with drug gangs offering high salaries, is this already violent city on the brink of chaos?
- This article is a project of UBC’s International Reporting Program
Rubiel Idarraga expects an ambush. To avoid it, he rarely travels at night, varies his route to work, and often checks in with his neighbours to make sure nobody is watching his house. As a construction worker in Cali, Colombia, his fear might seem unfounded – except that he says people have already tried to murder him for his past crimes.
Idarraga is one of around 1,400 former Farc guerrillas who left it behind for a civilian existence in Cali. After the landmark peace accord between the government and the Farc in 2016, he is set to be joined by potentially thousands more, who have disarmed and are waiting in temporary camps.