Saturday, December 2, 2023

Human Rights Chief demands independent investigations over killings in Colombia

United Nations Human Rights Chief expressed concerns over deadly clashes in the Colombian city of Cali. Michelle Bachelet cited that 14 people have killed in massive protests against the government in Colombia’s third-largest city. Cali is of 2.2 million people. She is calling for an independent investigation and accountability for the bloodshed and violence. She demands resumption of dialogue and serve justice.

Officials say at least 59 people had killed and more than 2,300 civilians and uniformed personnels had injured in the month of protests. Among the dead in Cali was an off-duty prosecutor who fired guns at two demonstrators who blocked a road and killed one of them.

Human Rights Chief also cited “credible reports” of at least 63 deaths nationwide and described the situation in Cali as “very serious”. The bureau also cited reports of individuals who shot demonstrators in several parts of the city in the presence of police. It is important that everyone involved in causing injury or death, including officials, is investigated promptly, effectively, independently and transparently. Those responsible are brought to justice. Her comments came after Colombian soldiers tightened control over Cali.

Human Rights Chief also urges for peaceful solution

The country is in the second month of protests against President Ivan Duque‘s rule. Development is even more worrying given the progress made in resolving the social unrest. It broke out a month ago after the national strike against several government social and economic policies. At least 30 more people have arrested in Cali city on Friday. It again raised concerns about the whereabouts of some.

United Nations Human Rights Chief Ms. Michelle Bachelet. — Photo by @tcsnoticias via Twitter

Bachelet is the former president of Chile. She stressed that only dialogue can resolve the demands of various groups on both sides. The trial process is fair and the legal process of the detainees must be guaranteed. She welcome the commitment of some participants in Cali and at the national level to negotiate a peaceful and negotiated solution to social unrest.

Further, she call for an end to all forms of violence, including vandalism. All parties continue to talk to each other and ensure that the lives and dignity of all people has respected. She also stressed the need to take all necessary measures in accordance with international human rights standards to prevent extinctions.

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