[Marxism] Riots over electoral fraud in Colombia

Greg McDonald sabocat59 at mac.com
Wed Oct 31 06:48:01 MDT 2007


Justice for Colombia

Date of article: 31 October 2007 | Author: Justice for Colombia
Riots hit Colombia

Allegations of fraud in Sunday's regional elections in Colombia have  
caused protests around the country including serious rioting in some  
towns. Already one protester has been killed and the army has been  
sent into the streets to restore order. In Sucre department huge  
protests are being held against alleged vote rigging that ensured  
that a candidate linked to paramilitary groups was elected as Governor.

According to Colombian daily newspaper 'El Tiempo' the protests are  
aimed almost exclusively at candidates from pro-government parties  
and particularly those from the 'Party of the U', the political party  
closest to President Alvaro Uribe. Major protests include:

# Rioting in Cienaga de Oro in Cordoba department against the  
election of Plinio D'Paola of the 'Party of the U'. At least 20  
people have been injured and 18-year-old Luis Roberto Bedoya was shot  
and killed. Protesters chanting that the elections were rigged in  
favour of the pro-Uribe candidate burnt down municipal government  
offices as well as the home of Mr D'Paola's parents.

# The army has been sent into the town of Cimitarra in Santander  
department to quell protests against the election of pro-Uribe Herman  
Rodriguez Guerrero as mayor. The protesters, who have destroyed the  
mayor's residence, are also alleging fraud.

# Government offices have been torched in Alto del Rosario in Bolivar  
department during protests against the election of Emiro Antonio  
Carpio of the 'Party of the U'.

# Clashes with police have also occurred over claims that 'Party of  
the U' candidates were fraudulently elected in Orocue (Casanare  
department), Florida and Pradera (Valle department), Castilla la  
Nueva and San Carlos de Guaroa (Meta department) and Galapa and Alto  
del Rosario (Atlantico department).

# In the town of Regidor in Bolivar department, violence also erupted  
on Sunday when residents confronted politicians who were bringing  
carloads of voters in from the neighbouring departments of Santander  
and Cesar to vote in the town.

# El Tiempo reports (read here) that protests have occurred in at  
least seven other towns.

Perhaps the biggest protests have occurred in Sucre department where  
serious allegations of fraud have been made concerning the election  
of Jorge Barraza as the new Governor of the department. Police and  
soldiers have been firing into the air to try and disperse  
demonstrators in the city of Sincelejo and the towns of Sucre and La  
Mojana.

Barraza, also of the 'Party of the U', has received the backing of  
three politicians who are currently in jail for their links with  
paramilitaries and was listed in a recent investigations as having a  
'high risk' of paramilitary connections. The opposition Liberal Party  
has threatened legal action if his apparent victory is not declared  
null and void.


© Justice for Colombia 



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