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Colombia: violent repression, paramilitarism, illegal detention and torture of peaceful protesters in Cali

The city of Cali, capital of the department of Valle del Cauca, is in one of the regions hardest hit by the internal armed conflict and where various armed groups have proliferated and continue to operate, resulting in thousands of people being displaced and killed.

Since 28 April, mass demonstrations have taken place in Cali, in the framework of the “National Strike”. It was the city that saw the greatest concentration of the most serious reports of violent repression of young protesters by the security forces and armed civilian groups, and the authorities are continuing to restrict the right to peaceful protest.

The Colombian authorities violated the human rights of peaceful demonstrators in Cali, using excessive and unnecessary force to disperse them. Under the pretext of restoring order, terrible injuries were inflicted on hundreds of people and dozens of young people lost their lives.“said Erika Guevara-Rosas, Americas director at Amnesty International.

The practices described in the new report Cali: In the epicentre of repression – which include the use of lethal weapons against protesters, excessive and unlawful use of less lethal weapons such as tear gas, unlawful detentions and torture – are representative of hundreds of reports by protesters and human rights defenders and organizations and illustrate the modus operandi implemented throughout the country, Amnesty International said.

The city of Cali, capital of the department of Valle del Cauca, is in one of the regions hardest hit by the internal armed conflict and where various armed groups have proliferated and continue to operate, resulting in thousands of people being displaced and killed.

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