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  • Indigenous peoples moving towards Bogota, Colombia, Oct. 13, 2020.

    Indigenous peoples moving towards Bogota, Colombia, Oct. 13, 2020. | Photo: Twitter/ @BluRadioCo

Published 16 October 2020
Opinion

President Duque has not yet said whether he will meet with the Indigenous peoples and farmers.

The Ombudsman's Office offered its headquarters in Bogota so that Colombia's President Ivan Duque can meet with thousands of Indigenous people and farmers who are marching towards the city as part of the "Collective Action in Defense of Life, Territory, Democracy, Justice, and Peace" (Minga).

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"We maintain the proposal to mediate and propitiate spaces. We trust that frank and serene dialogue will help make Colombia a better country," the Ombudsman's Office stated.

The proposal came shortly after the Bogota-based National University announced that it would not open the campus doors to receive the Minga.

The Ombudsman's office announced its offer also while the national government threatened not to receive the Indigenous movement, which is formed by over 8,000 people, at the capital's entrance. The march is expected to arrive in Bogota on Monday.

"Although we announced the government will receive the Indigenous march, no agreement has been reached yet," Interior Minister Alicia Arango said as she attributed the responsibility to the capital's local authorities.

Bogota's Major Claudia Lopez demanded that thousands of citizens moving towards the city be tested for COVID-19. Her Interior Secretary Luis Gomez accused the Duque administration of refusing to assume the health costs of the massive march.

On October 14, the Indigenous movement left Cali city in the Cauca Department, after requesting President Duque a meeting, which he never attended.

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