In a wealthy neighborhood in the Colombian city of Cali, residents stand next to it Policemen Fired at the protesters.
They believe that they are protecting their property from mobs.
After 50 days of socializing protest Opposing the government of right-wing President Ivan Duque, the class divide in Cali seems to be growing.
This southeastern city known for social inequality and racism has been the center of violent riots during the protests.
on May 28, Thugs from some nearby slums appeared in the affluent Ciudad Jardin community and tried to burn down the police station.
The residents responded with guns.
Andres Escobar, a 30-year-old publicist, said: “It’s like a civil war. The civilians are worried about their homes and property, with the police on one side and the protesters on the other… The community imposes this kind of anarchy and chaos.” AFP.
Escobar admitted that he fired several automatic pistols “in the air” that day. Facts have proved that this was the deadliest day of the city’s protests, with 13 people killed.
Luis Castillo, a sociologist at the University of Calivale, said that that day was the most obvious example of “conflict…marked by class differences, racial differences, and ethnic differences.” Exacerbated by the pandemic.
Ciudad Jardin has luxury boutiques, mansions with swimming pools and palm-lined avenues, just like a mini Beverly Hills.
Almost no residents took to the streets to protest Duke.
Nor did they protest the widely condemned police brutality against the demonstrators.
Those first protest -Initially opposed the now withdrawn tax reform proposal-On April 28, most unions and students demanded a change in the government.
But for the first time, young blacks and mixed races from impoverished communities joined in.
Castillo said that in Cali, the poverty rate of 67% is much higher than in other parts of the country, and there is obvious “apartheid”.
This helps explain why poor black communities have risen after the pandemic has severely hit the informal sector.
The protesters interviewed by Agence France-Presse were between 15 and 35 years old and either worked in the informal sector, were unemployed, or were students.
They demand work, education and health services.
Some chefs and others drew the outlines of their dead companions on the floor as they were listening to reggae and smoking to kill time.
They claim to have weapons, but they can only display homemade shields, sticks and stones.
Plein, the “frontline” coordinator of the roadblocks in Port Madeira, said these people were tired of “seeing the family in trouble” and he was shot to death in a clash with the police.
“We hope that those who are rich must be the same as the poor,” Plein said.