Colombia is experiencing a new day of marches and rallies this Thursday as part of the national strike against President Ivan Duque's tax reform.
Repressive Actions in the Midst of National Strike in Colombia
This South American country dawned with several highways blocked by citizens who reject the increase in taxes on basic goods. This happened, for example, on the highways connecting Bogota with the municipality of Facatativa, where dozens of cargo vehicles remain blocked.
During the April 28 protests, looting was reported in Bogota, where 22 people were arrested for acts of vandalism. The Colombian Federation of Journalists (Felcoper) denounced that over 10 journalists were injured while covering citizen protests.
Citizen outrage increased in the afternoon and evening of Wednesday after citizens posted on social networks a video in which a police officer is seen getting off his motorcycle and shooting a young man in Cali. He died a few minutes later lying on the sidewalk, as recorded by the independent outlet Cuestion Publica.
The meme reads, "While most of the mobilizations were calm, the Mobile Anti-Disturbances Squadron (ESMAD) assaulted some human rights defenders and students. Leidy Cadena, a Political Science student, was hit in her eye. Her situation is very serious".
Compelled by the forcefulness of citizen rejection of his economic policies, President Duque said he is willing to eliminate some of his proposals.
"I have heard all the protests. I know that many of these measures are difficult to explain, but I am willing to dialogue," he said.
"What I have sought is not to tax basic foods... regarding the VAT, we can leave out aspects of the proposal related to public services or gasoline."
Meanwhile, former President Alvaro Uribe, a far-right politician who has been linked to war crimes committed between 2002 and 2010, called for the army to take to the streets to control the protests.