BOGOTA – The federal government of President Ivan Duque prolonged an olive department Monday to labor and scholar teams organizing latest protests in Colombia by providing to begin separate talks on their calls for.

Administrative Director Diego Molano mentioned the federal government is keen to instantly provoke talks on 13 factors recognized by the Nationwide Strike Committee – but in addition requested it to chorus from a deliberate protest on Wednesday.

“We’ve asked them, given the clamor of Colombians and so that the country can begin the Christmas season peacefully, that they suspend the Dec. 4 strike,” Molano mentioned, noting it may have financial and transportation repercussions.

Members of the Nationwide Strike Committee, comprised of over a dozen labor, scholar and different activist teams, mentioned it was too late to cease Wednesday’s protest however expressed hope the provide for dialogue nonetheless stays.

“The government has been very slow to convoke us,” mentioned Julio Roberto Gomez, head of the Normal Labor Confederation, one of many nation’s largest unions and a member of the Nationwide Strike Committee.

Duque had beforehand insisted that the strike committee be part of the “National Conversation” he has begun with a wider swatch of society to draft short- and long-term options to points like corruption and inequality.

“I’m the president of all Colombians,” Duque mentioned in a televised interview Monday. “Those who march and those who don’t march.”

Protest organizers have refused to take part in that dialogue, bashing it as a dialog amongst allies that will dilute demonstrator issues, and as a substitute demanded that the president set up separate talks particularly with them.

Molano didn’t clarify if the federal government would nonetheless be keen to maintain unbiased talks with the Nationwide Strike Committee even when it proceeds with a Wednesday strike.

A woman marches with her children in an anti-government demonstration in Bogota, Colombia.
A girl marches along with her kids in an anti-government demonstration in Bogota, Colombia, Nov. 21, 2019..

Authorities estimate 250,000 Colombians took to streets across the nation in protests in opposition to Duque’s authorities on Nov. 21. The Strike Committee held a second demonstration final week that drew far fewer folks.

The strike steering committee’s 13 calls for embrace asking Duque to withdraw or chorus from tax, labor and pension regulation modifications which are both earlier than the legislature or rumored to be in growth.

It additionally needs Duque to overview free-trade agreements, remove a police unit accused within the dying of an 18-year-old scholar protester and totally implement Colombia’s historic peace accord with leftist rebels.



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