A vehicle of the International Red Cross leaves La Picota prison in the outskirts of Bogota, Colombia, Wednesday, Jan. 20, 2016. (AP Photo/Ronnie Palleiro)
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Colombia said Thursday it has freed 16 FARC guerrillas pardoned in peace negotiations with the leftist rebels, as the two sides move toward a deal to end their half-century conflict.The jailed rebels, the first out of a group of 30 to be pardoned, were released in a goodwill gesture to reciprocate for a unilateral ceasefire declared by the Revolutionary Armed Forces of Colombia (FARC) in July, said the office of the government's high commissioner for peace.The Colombian conflict, which has killed more than 220,000 people and displaced six million, has over the years drawn in right-wing paramilitaries, drug traffickers and several leftist rebel groups, of which the FARC is the oldest and largest remaining.
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