The UN rights workplace has condemned the "excessive use of force" by safety officers in Colombia, after quite a few deaths throughout days of protests in opposition to a proposed tax reform.
The Office of the United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights voiced "profound shock" at an extra incident in a single day in the town of Cali, saying police "opened fire" on demonstrators, reportedly killing and injuring a quantity of folks.
The rights workplace known as for calm on all sides forward of a deliberate mass protest on Wednesday, and burdened that safety forces ought to solely use firearms as a final resort.
Spokeswoman Marta Hurtado instructed reporters in Geneva that the scenario remained risky.
"What we can say clearly is that we have received reports, and we have witnesses, is [of] excessive use of force by security officers, shooting, live ammunition being used, beatings of demonstrators and as well detentions," she mentioned.
Protesters in Colombia yesterday known as for a brand new mass rally after 19 folks died and greater than 800 had been wounded in clashes throughout 5 days of demonstrations, in accordance with official figures.
"Despite an announcement from the Colombian presidency on 2 May that the tax reform bill would be removed from Congress, the protests, which began on 28 April, have been continuing, with calls for a massive demonstration tomorrow, 5 May," Ms Hurtado mentioned.
She mentioned that "the majority of the protests to date have been peaceful."
"Given the extraordinarily tense scenario, with troopers in addition to cops deployed to police the protest, we name for calm.
"We remind the state authorities of their accountability to guard human rights, together with the fitting to life and safety of individual, and to facilitate the train of the fitting to freedom of peaceable meeting.
"We stress also that law enforcement officers should abide by the principles of legality, precaution, necessity and proportionality when policing demonstrations. Firearms can only be used as a measure of last resort against an imminent threat to life or of serious injury."
Ms Hurtado additionally mentioned UN officers had been making an attempt to confirm the casualty toll from the incident in a single day Monday in Cali.
"We are deeply alarmed at developments in the city of Cali in Colombia overnight, where police opened fire on demonstrators protesting against tax reforms, reportedly killing and injuring a number of people," she mentioned.
"Our workplace in Colombia is working to confirm the precise quantity of casualties, and set up how this horrible incident happened in Cali.
"We express our profound shock at the events there and stress our solidarity with those who have lost their lives, as well as the injured and their families."
The European Union additionally known as on safety forces to keep away from a heavy-handed response to road protests.
"We condemn the deaths of all the people who have been killed during those protests, the reports are saying at least 19 victims and also one police officer," an EU spokesperson instructed a briefing.
"It is really a priority to stop the escalation of this violence and to avoid any disproportionate use of force by security forces," the spokesperson mentioned.
primarily based on website supplies www.rte.ie