The governor of the department of Valle del Cauca, Clara Luz Roldán, has ordered the blocking of all access to the region from Monday to next Saturday due to increasing tensions in the region.
The measure restricts mobility in the entire department. “This is what the health situation demands of us, due to the acceleration of the COVID-19 contagion, the alarm in the hospital and the overwhelmed public order situation,” he said.
The decision came after a new wave of clashes took place this Sunday in the city of Cali as part of demonstrations against the government of Iván Duque.
On the last day, groups of residents of the region gave assurances that they would have to defend themselves against the attacks on their homes. However, the indigenous guard has insisted that they were attacked at gunpoint by a paramilitary group and that several people were injured, according to the newspaper ‘El Tiempo’.
The office of the mayor of Cali has so far counted 10 injured, eight indigenous people and two residents of the sector. Thus, it indicated that six of the wounded received gunshot wounds. For this reason, the President Iván Duque has requested that the largest deployment of Colombian forces in the city be carried out.
With this in mind, Defense Minister Diego Molano has reported that 10,000 police officers and 2,100 military personnel are deployed in the area where secure logistics routes are being established.
“Our public force is here to ensure institutional presence and redouble our efforts until the calm and safety of the people of Cali is restored,” he said.
The Mayor of Cali, Jorge Iván Ospina, and groups of young demonstrators in Paso del Comercio in the northeast of the city have managed to reach an agreement to lift the blockade in this sector. The signing was carried out at midnight after a hectic day for the capital of the valley in the interests of public order.
The mayor has therefore claimed that “those who are here are the boys from the neighborhood, working boys who were there and pushed this blockade forward because their needs were not clarified.”
“They fought Esmad but they won and they did it with great bravery and courage and they understood that they had to unlock,” he explained before clarifying that the deal is aimed precisely at death young people to avoid.
So he turned to the Colombian President and made it clear that it is necessary to give “time for peace and life”, for which there is first “the dialogue to be exhausted”. However, Duque is scheduled to meet with the Cali Unemployment Committee during the day to discuss the matter.
Over the next few days, the president plans to sit down with representatives from the sectors that have taken to the streets for a series of meetings starting this Monday. “In Cali we are monitoring the actions we are taking to restore peace of mind to citizens, strengthen public order and review progress in social dialogue. We are holding a meeting with local authorities, the Department of Defense, public authorities and the US Department by Interior to evaluate these actions, “announced on his Twitter account.
“We express our willingness to move this exploratory session forward. I assume that we will occupy a space to demand respect and guarantees for the free exercise of the mobilization,” the committee said for its part.
“We will have this meeting at 12 noon,” confirmed the Peace Commissioner Miguel Ceballos, who coordinates these meetings on behalf of the government. Representatives from the United Nations and the Bishops’ Conference will attend the event.
For the meeting, the parties prepared several discussion points, including mass vaccination, safe reactivation and promotion of social development, non-violence, protection of the most vulnerable, stabilization of public finances and zero enrollment. amongst other things.