ST. PAUL (WJON News) -- Members of the Minnesota National Guard are heading to South America to help in the fight against drug trafficking.

Detachment 5, Bravo Company, 2nd Battalion, 245th Aviation Regiment will hold a departure ceremony Thursday before leaving on a nine-month deployment to Bogota, Colombia.

It's part of an ongoing cooperative effort between the United States, Colombia, and other South American countries.

The six-member team from the Minnesota National Guard will conduct flight operations, transporting passengers and cargo in an effort to combat organized crime.

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One requirement of the team is that at least one member speaks and writes fluently in Spanish. Army Staff Sergeant Abigail Rivera was born in Peru and lived there until she was 12, when she came to the United States. She joined the National Guard in 2012.



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