Two reports early today highlight that the strikes and protests currently gripping the country, far from abating are, in fact, growing and spreading.
Other news of concern is the arrest of a trade union leader who is due to speak at the Trade Union Congress in the UK.
The first report is from Colombia Reports, headlined: ‘Social unrest in Colombia spreads as govt fails to reach out to strikers’
“As President Juan Manuel Santos’ government tries to calm the situation through localized negotiations, Colombia’s national strike movement is gaining momentum with shows of support from the citizenry and the addition of new groups to strike efforts.” Read More.
The second report is from The City Paper, headlined: ‘Strike: Boyaca‘s predicament’
“The normally tranquil roads winding through the mountainous department of Boyaca have become the eipcenter of Colombia’s agrarian strike over the last week as protestors block major highways and dump truckloads of tomatoes and milk onto the streets. Farmers protesting Colombia’s Free Trade Agreement with the United States and the price of fertilizer, among other economic issues, have succeeded in preventing the transport of agricultural products to the nation’s capital and in bringing Boyaca to a standstill.” Read More.
The third is from Justice for Colombia, regarding the arrest of the trade union leader Huber Ballasteros:
“The CUT, Colombia’s largest trade union confederation has called for the release of Huber Ballesteros, one of the country’s most high-profile union and opposition leaders.
“Ballesteros was arrested on Sunday 25th August in Bogota. The arrest comes in the midst of mass industrial action taking place around the country in the agricultural, health, transport and energy sectors. Ballesteros is one of the leaders of the strikes and one of the 10 person committee set up for any eventual negotiations with the Government.
“He was due to address the TUC Conference on Wednesday 11th September as well as JFC Fringe meeting at lunchtime on the Tuesday 10th, as the official guest of the TUC. He also had several meetings with MPs in Westminster.” Read More