SOS GUADALAJARA DE BUGA
DISPROPORTIONATE ATTACKS BY THE SECURITY FORCES ARE ENDANGERING THE LIVES AND INTEGRITY OF CHILDREN AND ELDERLY PEOPLE IN THE AURES AND PALOBLANCO BARRIOS (NEIGHBOURHOODS).
Today, 13th May, 2021, the Plenary of the House of Representatives was in session in the city of Cali, where it learned first-hand about the serious human rights violation that are occurring there.
Given the serious events that occurred in the city of Guadalajara de Buga, in which the protesters were disproportionately attacked by ESMAD [the ‘anti-mutiny’ robocops]. at 1.30 p.m. two young people asked to intervene in the session to report in public and televised media the serious violations of human rights to which they were subjected.
Given the seriousness of the events, a committee of Congress deputies, headed by representative María José Pizarro and four other congressmen, together with the Nomadesc Association accompanied by the international community, travelled to the municipality of Guadalajara de Buga.
When the commission arrived in the municipality, it requested to be heard by the security forces,1 but their reaction even in the presence of the Congressmen, was to attack the demonstrators with tear gas, which were fired as lethal weapons and not dispersal weapons.
The Commission was able to verify:
1.- On the entrance road to the municipality of Buga, at alongside the SENA [further education institute], there is a concentration point that has been attacked today at different times by ESMAD agents who have arrived in the region through the neighbourhoods of Paloblanco and Aures.
2. The agents have violently and indiscriminately attacked those who were at the scene with unconventional weapons and tear gas. Adults, girls and boys residing in the nearby residential neighbourhoods have been injured and affected.2
There are reports that several injured people are being transferred to the San José Hospital, where they face to be prosecuted by the SIJIN (police) personnel who seek to prosecute the injured.
One of the people who was transferred to the health centre has a wound with a rubber bullet that pierced his stomach and there are several serious injuries to his hands.
4. The commission made a visit, spoke with the families of the injured and detained. While in this verification work at the hospital, it received a request from a Buga Human Rights commission for mediation and support as they were again being subjected to excessive and indiscriminate repression by the security forces.
5. Lawyers and human rights defenders also report that they are receiving threats from police officers.
6. It is also reported that, at the Sena Buga headquarters, a helicopter landed with members of the security forces, clearly violating the university’s autonomy.
7. At 6:00 p.m. The human rights commission and the Congress representatives who went to the place to verify the situation, were gassed by ESMAD. They were able to verify the serious violations of civil and political rights, especially of the right to life of all the inhabitants of the city of Buga.
We also report that tear gas shots are being heard. Attempts to mediate with the public forces have been unsuccessful.
8. At 6:30 p.m. The inhabitants of the Aures neighbourhood call the commission and denounced that ESMAD had set a lorry on fire next to a gas station, near to where the protest is taking place, endangering the residents of the neighbourhood.
9. At 7:30 p.m. the community of the Aures neighbourhood, report that they don’t have electricity.
10. At 8:30 pm, the young ALEXÁNDER GÓMEZ RUBIO, who was in the Aures neighborhood, is reported missing.
11. The community reports that at the moment, at 9:30 p.m. ESMAD is firing tear gas at houses where elderly adults, boys and girls are present.