Hundreds of reactions from international figures and organizations have been expressed in support of the Colombian people in struggle. Although large media corporations have been oblivious to what has been happening in Colombia, so as to hide State responsibility in the killings of civilians during the ongoing popular demonstrations against Iván Duque’s policies, many around the world have described the acts of brutality as “genocide.”
En video quedó registrado el momento en el que matrimonios de Policías y ESMAD persiguen a manifestantes en el barrio Fátima en Manizales. En otro video se evidencia que Policías sacan sus armas y apuntan a la cabeza de los civiles. #SOSColombiaDDHH.
— JUANCA #SOSColombiaDDHH (@JUANCAELBROKY) May 4, 2021
What about human rights?
The United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights issued a statement expressing that her office was “deeply alarmed by the events that occurred during the night [of May 3] in the city of Cali, Colombia, where police opened fire on those protesting against tax reforms, and reportedly killed and injured several people.”
Estamos profundamente alarmados por los acontecimientos ocurridos en la ciudad de Cali, Colombia, la pasada noche 👇👇video con pronunciamiento de portavoz de la Alta Comisionada de la ONU Para los Derechos Humanos pic.twitter.com/xXeA7MIpeO
— ONU Derechos Humanos Colombia (@ONUHumanRights) May 4, 2021
The UN organism emphasized that work is being carried out to collect and verify the numbers of victims of violent incidents in the midst of peaceful protests.
Threats to the UN
There have also been reports of threats to human rights defenders in the New Granada Nation [Colombia]. The United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights in Colombia, Juliette Rivero, denounced that members of her commission had been threatened and attacked by the security forces during the demonstrations in what is considered to be the epicenter of dissent: Cali.
“While we were monitoring the human rights situation in Cali, no direct shots were fired at the UN Human Rights team,” wrote Rivero on her Twitter account. “However, other committee members received threats and attacks and shots by police, but no one was hurt.” Rivero requested an investigation and punitive action against those responsible.
In the context of protests in various parts of Colombia, the UN Human Rights Office has received reports of at least 14 deaths since April 28, including at least one police officer.
🇨🇴 #Colombia: We are deeply alarmed at developments in Cali overnight, where police opened fire on demonstrators, and a number of people were killed & injured.
⏩ States have a responsibility to protect #HumanRights and facilitate peaceful assembly.
— UN Human Rights (@UNHumanRights) May 4, 2021
Europe condemns the genocide
Along similar lines, European External Action Service spokesperson Peter Stano stated that “the European Union condemns acts of violence directed against the legitimate rights to demonstrate, to the freedom to assemble and to express oneself. It is very important that respect for these rights remains.”
United Left European parliamentarian Manu Pineda also raised his voice to denounce the genocide against the Colombian people and petitioned, by means of a letter to the High Representative of the European Union for Foreign Affairs Josep Borrell, that a mission be sent to Colombia, due to the ongoing violent repression of the civilian population by police and armed forces, which began during the national strike on April 28.
Pineda also remarked that the human rights violations during these protests “deepen the grave situation in Colombian society, whose government has not stopped the persecutions and murders of social leaders and the signatories of the Peace Accords, and which has not provided the necessary guarantees to implement these.”
🇨🇴 Toda mi solidaridad y apoyo al pueblo colombiano, que desde hace días protesta contra las medidas neoliberales de Duque pese a la brutal represión que están sufriendo y los llamamientos del expresidente Uribe a emplear fuego real contra manifestantes #ParoIndefinido2021 pic.twitter.com/txMY1uMf5O
— Manu Pineda🔻 (@ManuPineda) May 4, 2021
Paul-Emile Dupret, left-wing jurist and advisor to the European Parliament at Brussels confirmed that there are concerns by political parties in the international community, especially those of the European community, in regard to the murders and human rights violations carried out in Colombia by the military forces and police, who have been shooting and killing protesters. For this reason, they have asked the Executive branch in Colombia to put a stop to this wave of State violence.
According to various reports, the death toll has risen to at least 26 victims, over one thousand civilians have been injured in the demonstrations, and over 650 arbitrary arrests have been recorded. The United Nations recorded 66 massacres in Colombia in 2020 alone.
Reactions from around the world
#MATANZA EN COLOMBIA en sólo 48/h a manos de Uribe y Duque: más d 30 ejecutados a mansalva en las calles, más d 1.000 heridos d bala, 800 detenidos arbitrariamente y 10 mujeres agredidas sexualmente por parte de la policía y el Ejército… La oea, ONU bachelet, medios #COMPLICES pic.twitter.com/ckbisehWnt
— Tarek William Saab (@TarekWiliamSaab) May 4, 2021
Nos entristece mucho lo que está pasando en Colombia. Desde aquí les enviamos nuestro apoyo y deseamos que pronto puedan estar en paz. 🙏 🇨🇴 pic.twitter.com/G0PuTdUvns
— Everton (@EvertonESP) May 4, 2021
Colombia estoy contigo 🇨🇴 Que triste ver a un gobierno abusando del poder. #SOSColombiaDDHH
— WISIN (@wisin) May 4, 2021
Me acabo de enterar de lo que esta ocurriendo en Colombia, me da mucha pena a la vez que rabia… muchísima fuerza a toda Colombia 🇨🇴❤
— Nexxuz (@NexxuzHD) May 4, 2021
Protestas pacíficas son derecho ciudadano y logro democrático. Violencia no: La condenamos, venga de donde venga. Hechos de heridos, muertes de manifestantes y del policía deben ser investigados. Confiamos en pronto esclarecimiento por parte de autoridades https://t.co/depjourKXq
— Peter Ptassek – Embajador de Alemania en Colombia (@alemEmbajador) May 4, 2021
Featured Image: Police repress protesters in Colombia, May 2, 2021. | Photo: Twitter/ @luiskadhu
Translation: Orinoco Tribune