Protest Continue

Sep 12, 2020

Overnight on 10-11 September 2020, disruptive protests continued for a second consecutive night in the capital Bogotá and other major cities across Colombia, including Cali and Medellín. Demonstrators nationwide targeted police stations and blockaded major thoroughfares in response to the death of a man in police custody on 9 September. In Bogotá, hundreds of demonstrators gathered in the Engativá and Fontibón districts despite a request from the city’s mayor to leave the streets by 1900 local time (0000 UTC on 11 September). Protesters erected blockades on Avenida Cali — a main thoroughfare — and set fire to at least one police station in the Villa Luz neighborhood, prompting police officers to deploy tear gas to disperse the gathering. In Medellín, clashes occurred between protesters and police officers after the demonstrators set up roadblocks on Avenida Oriental, one of the city’s busiest thoroughfares, gathered at Parque de los Deseos and protested outside the city’s police headquarters. In Cali, demonstrators vandalized buildings of the BBVA bank and Banco de Bogotá. Additional clashes between protesters and police officers occurred in the cities of Barranquilla, Caldas, Cudinamarca and Tunja. Protesters reportedly set several police stations on fire in each city. Since 9 September at least 10 people have been killed in protest-related violence and approximately 400 more have suffered injuries, including 188 police officers.

In anticipation of additional protests, a security official in Bogotá warned that a nighttime curfew could be imposed in the city on 11-12 September. There is a high probability of demonstrations in the city and elsewhere in Colombia through the upcoming weekend. If violence intensifies during these demonstrations, authorities are likely to impose curfews and deploy additional security forces in an attempt to suppress the protests, which will further escalate the ongoing situation. Individuals currently residing in major Colombian cities should limit their movement after dark and avoid the vicinity of police stations in order to avoid being collaterally affected during the probable violence.

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