Wednesday, April 27, 2016

“Mélida was 9 when guerrilla fighters lured her away from...

"Mélida was 9 when guerrilla fighters lured her away from her family's home in Caldas, Colombia, with the promise of soup. For the next 7 years she was held hostage, forced to become a child soldier. Her family thought she had died in battle. But when she was 16, Mélida returned to her village, carrying a pistol and a grenade. Only her grandfather recognized her — from a birthmark on her cheek. Mélida was taken to a government rehabilitation center for indigenous youth who've left the rebels, known as the FARC. Today, she's caught between 2 worlds, she says. "True, we were children waiting for our deaths," she told @nytimes reporter @caseysalbum. "But I'm always thinking about returning." Mélida isn't alone. As Colombia nears a peace agreement that would end a half-century of fighting, thousands of rebel fighters who since childhood were raised to carry out armed struggle know little else but war. The photographer @juanarre captured this moment between Mélida and her daughter, Celeste, who was born last year. Visit the link in our profile to read more." By nytimes on Instagram.

Posted on infosnack.

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