The majority of wars fought in the last 50 years have involved non-state, anti-state or stateless actors. These groups, commonly referred to as insurgents, dissidents, freedom fighters, rebel groups or guerillas, act independently from recognized governments. These non-state actors (NSAs) typically use low-tech, homemade weapons, such as landmines, improvised explosive devices (IEDs), and other small arms and light weapons to wage guerilla warfare. Civil war, economic instability and a booming illegal drug trade have resulted in a build-up of arms and have thus empowered Latin American NSAs. Due in part to growing insurgent strength, parts of Latin America has been heavily mined. Colombia, Guatemala and Nicaragua continue to wage wars against either violent NSA uprisings or the landmines they have left behind.



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