In another clash between police and protesters blocking roads in Cali, Colombia, an activist was killed and four officers were injured.
Colombia has faced a wave of protests since the end of April. The acts began as criticism of tax reform. Although the proposal was withdrawn, the violent crackdown on protests – at least 62 dead during the period – continued to fuel discontent. Currently, the demonstrations have different agendas, such as improving the living conditions of the population.
On Thursday afternoon, police attempted to disperse hooded men who had erected a barricade at one of the entrances to Cali, a town that has become the epicenter of the protests.
“Our officers were received with firearms, gunshots, leaving one officer wounded by gunshot and three others wounded,” Cali Police Deputy Commander Col. Guillén Amaya said on Friday in a statement. media statement.
Juan David Muñoz, 23, who was at the barricade, died during the clash, a spokesperson for the city’s security secretariat told AFP, without giving details of the cause of death. .
“The last option is lethal force, but when they shot our officers, they retaliated with their legitimate weapons,” said Carlos Soler, Cali’s security secretary.
The clash, which also left four vehicles cremated, took place in an area known as Paso del Comercio, where protesters have been blocking traffic with roadblocks since the end of April.
Although the National Strike Committee, the most visible sector of the protest, suspended protests on Tuesday, other unhappy sectors of the government maintain active marches, rallies and blockades in various parts of Cali and Bogotá.
At the beginning of June, the commission interrupted the discussions it had had with the government since the beginning of May, without reaching an agreement to end the crisis. The organization demanded an explicit condemnation of police brutality and an apology for the excesses. The government, in turn, defended the end of roadblocks as a condition for progress in negotiations.
Mobilizations have been mostly peaceful during the day, but at night they tend to turn violent, with violent clashes between civilians and police.
The UN, the United States, the European Union and NGOs have denounced the serious abuses committed by the public forces. .