The Special Administrative Unit for Military and Police Criminal Justice announced this Friday the opening of a preliminary investigation into shots fired at demonstrators by armed civilians in Cali on May 28, without any intervention from the police present at the scene.
“The Special Administrative Unit for Military and Police Criminal Justice reports that, compared to the videos posted on social networks of the events of 28 In the Ciudad Jardín Sector of Cali, a military and police criminal court opened a preliminary investigation and then a summary,” the unit said the Colombian newspaper “El Espectador” stated.
This panel states that “evidence and physical evidence was collected leading to the arrest of seven members of the National Police for the alleged crime of excuses by omission.”
Meanwhile, the President’s Adviser on National Security, Rafael Guarín, has urged Defense Minister Diego Molano to regulate the use of traumatic weapons in Colombia, as they must be viewed “technically like firearms”.
On the same Sunday, the team from the Inter-American Commission on Human Rights (IACHR) arrived in Colombia to review the human rights situation as part of the open-ended general strike, the so-called national strike, which began six weeks ago.
His working visit will officially begin on Tuesday June 8th and will last through Thursday 10th with visits to the cities of Bogotá and Cali. The commission will document the complaints of human rights abuses, taking testimony from the victims and their close relatives. In addition, “it will meet with different sectors, including authorities at different levels of public power, representatives of civil society, groups, trade unions and unions,” according to the IACHR itself.
The director of the Colombian Legal Commission, Gustavo Gallón, has warned of the danger posed by President Iván Duque’s decree on the militarization of the country in relation to the current situation. This measure violates the Political Charter because it takes into account the army’s armed crackdown on citizens and because the demonstrators are “treated with combatants,” as Gallón pointed out.
“The fact that freedoms and rights are not absolute does not mean that the army in Colombia is entitled to turn its weapons against the citizens (…). In no case is armed action by the army in constitutional relation according to the constitution to social mobilizations, “he warned.
On April 28, an indefinite strike against the government of President Iván Duque, the so-called national strike, began to force the withdrawal of a tax reform. Once reached, protesters have continued protests against Duque and in protest against police violence.
Authorities have confirmed 20 deaths directly related to the protests and mobilizations, while another nine are still under investigation. Civil organizations assure that there are many more dead.