The horror of the nights in Cali during the protests

The horror of the nights in Cali during the protests

His breathing is heard as fast as if he had just played a soccer game, but in reality his body is immobile, he seems dead. The adrenaline comes from the shooting that occurs a few meters from where he is, lying on one of the main roads in the Colombian city of Cali, while recording everything with his mobile phone.

Later, José Dávila gets up, walks in the middle of the darkness to where the medical mission is, and in the middle of the noise nine more bullets are heard. Everything is chaos again in the La Luna sector, one of the most turbulent places in Colombia’s third most important city, since the national strike (general strike) began on April 28.

This incursion leaves two people wounded with the impact of a firearm; one of them is a friend of José. Both donated medical supplies and food to those who keep the protests alive in that central sector of Cali.

“DETONATIONS, BLASTS ARE HEARD”

The mobilizations were called as part of the rejection of a tax reform proposed by the Colombian Executive to Congress that, according to experts, would hit the pocket of the Colombian middle class in a forceful way.

The project was withdrawn by the national government, but eleven days later the protesters’ requests have escalated to withdraw the health reform that is being carried out in the Congress of the Republic, implement the peace agreements, end police violence or prevent fracking, among many demands that are heard in the streets.

In the former Branch of Heaven, the nights seem like hell. A journalist from the city, seasoned in reporting on war in the neighboring and troubled department of Cauca, says that only life in an armed conflict zone resembles what he has lived in recent days at his home, a few blocks away. of the Moon. ”As soon as night falls, the helicopter flies begin, the detonations and bursts are heard.

I had only felt the fear of the last nights one of the many times I was in Toribío ”, explains the journalist who prefers to remain anonymous. To understand better, it is enough to say that Toribío is a town in Cauca, nestled between two mountain ranges , which suffered 800 attacks by the defunct FARC guerrillas before the peace agreement was signed with the Government in 2016.

Hence, Matilde Roldán, a housewife, is in emotional crisis because she does not know the war in the countryside, but she has lived closely the events that occurred at nights in Cali since the protests began.

During the day, helicopters also fly overhead and ambulance sirens sound, but at night those sounds become more acute and the volleys of firearms, the detonations, the accelerated footsteps, the shouts of “they are killing us” echo. Protests, according to figures consolidated by various groups and organizations, of the 47 victims of homicides during the demonstrations, 35 have taken place in Cali, especially between April 30 and May 3.

The Ombudsman’s Office and the Prosecutor’s Office lower these figures to 27 people killed during the days throughout the country, of which only 11 would be directly linked to the events, seven are “in verification” and there are nine that are not related to the protests .

Matilde’s voice, trembling and torn from screaming, was immortalized in a video that has circulated in fragments on social networks. It is seen that policemen throw stones at her to prevent her from continuing to record, her husband confronts them with harangues of “murderers.”

One of these agents, emboldened, turns and replies that he “doesn’t give a damn” if I see him. None of the policemen wears their identification number on their uniforms and they wear motorcycle helmets, which prevents them from being recognized.

INTERNET COURTS

The bullets, the explosions are always repeated in the same areas of Cali in the middle of the gloom. Sometimes the power service is cut off and the internet signal is so weak that it became almost impossible to make live broadcasts like the ones that at the beginning of the marches showed the murder of a young graffiti artist who was participating in a vigil.

Cuts in these services are ordered by the Government and become a gag so that the world does not find out what is happening; But the Prosecutor’s Office, in official statements, has expressed that, if there have been damages, it is precisely due to the damage that vandals have caused in that infrastructure.

As the day arrives, the official reports do not reflect the horror. The official figures of victims are outdated, and are disputed between official bodies and organizations that are on the ground documenting all the human rights violations that are being committed during these days.

Melissa Galbraith
Melissa Galbraith is the World News reporter for Globe Live Media. She covers all the major events happening around the World. From Europe to Americas, from Asia to Antarctica, Melissa covers it all. Never miss another Major World Event by bookmarking her author page right here.