Statement on the events in Colombia

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Since April 28, 2021, the world has witnessed the new social outbreak in the sister republic of Colombia. We have seen and heard the clamor of youth, women, workers, peasants and indigenous people mobilized throughout the country. We have also observed the disproportionately violent, brutal and criminal actions of the military and police forces such as the Mobile Riot Squadron (ESMAD) against the people protesting in the streets. We have little or no access to this news, and even less is known about the causes of this situation.

Colombia is one of the countries in Latin America and the Caribbean that has had a succession of neoliberal governments, which for decades have been implementing a series of anti-people reforms and laws in the areas of health, education, social security and labor, supported by a strong military and police system prepared for the context of war that the country is experiencing, and all of this against a backdrop of constant violations of peace treaties by the state.

The government's latest attempt at fiscal reform, the cynicism of the ultra-right, represented by one of the most infamous figures in the history of the Americas - Álvaro Uribe Vélez - and his puppet Iván Duque, the current President of the Republic, have, by imposing their neoliberal measures, unleashed a massive popular rebellion, highlighting the structural crisis that the country is going through and the failure of this model on the continent. The government's response to this energetic demonstration of the disagreement of the majorities has been more than distressing: armed repression, violation of the demonstrators’ human rights, disappearances of social leaders, sexual abuses and real urban massacres in different regions of the country.

We, the Young Christian Workers of the Americas (JOCA), the International Young Christian Workers (IYCW), and the Latin American Network for the Right to Social Protection (Inspir), want to express our unconditional support to the entire Colombian people, their social movements and political organizations that are courageously demonstrating their discontent through permanent mobilization day after day, making their demands for the transformation of the country heard. We believe that the solidarity and unity of all the social sectors that are raising their voices in unison at this moment are essential to multiply the effects of the national strike. In view of the above, we declare that:

  1. Young workers, who are among the main actors of the popular protests in Colombia, are also the main victims of the reforms. They deserve a future full of opportunities, dignified work, retirement possibilities, access to quality education, rights they are deprived of by the Colombian state.
  2. The Colombian people have won two important victories so far, preventing the approval of the tax reform and forcing the resignation of one of the ministers responsible for the reform. However, in the streets there is a new clamor: the struggle is not over.
  3. The Colombian state has implemented a policy of violence and terror aimed at subjugating the people and hindering the national strike initiative. The YCW believes that this anti-democratic attitude, paradoxically represented by the political sectors articulated around the party called "Democratic Center", is nothing more than a dictatorial and repressive attempt to silence the voices of the most vulnerable and impoverished social sectors of the country.
  4. The tactic of infiltrating armed police among the demonstrators to generate violence and killings is nothing more than a desperate effort by the state to make the demonstrators look like "vandals" and thus criminalize the demonstrations.
  5. The progressive censorship to which the demonstrators are subjected by all mainstream media and social networks is huge. The Colombian ultra-right does not want to leave anything to chance and uses the media to accomplish its goals.
  6. Peace in the country will only be restored if state terrorism is stopped, if the government shows a willingness to engage in dialogue with the social sectors and to repeal anti-people laws, and if the current president resigns.

We ask the public opinion and the organized sectors of the world population to:

  1. Widely disseminate images, statements, denunciations, activities and other expressions of the Colombian national strike through social networks and alternative media.
  2. Organize and multiply demonstrations of support for the Colombian people in embassies and consulates around the world.
  3. Amplify and disseminate the faces of the real perpetrators of the massacre and repression of the Colombian people.

We demand that the international institutions:

  1. Ensure effective and efficient monitoring of what is happening in Colombia and send observers who can see the situation and activate mechanisms to protect the Colombian population.
  2. Address the complaints of human rights violations made by the Colombian people.
  3. Exercise political pressure on the Colombian government to stop the repression and opt for dialogue and immediate attention to the main popular demands.


The corrupt in jail!!!

The material and intellectual perpetrators of the killings and violence in jail!!!

Resignation of the President of the Colombian Republic Ivan Duque!!!


Young Christian Workers of the Americas

International Young Christian Workers

Latin American Network for the Right to Social Protection INSPIR

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