Colombia: Students organized protests demanding an increase in the budget for public universities. Protests took place throughout Bogotá. The students were joined by indigenous people from the western province of Chocó who had arrived in Bogotá the week before to demand the government guarantee protection for the human rights activists from their communities.
The indigenous groups decided to join the protests saying that the students’ demands were everybody’s demands.
Workers from the main labor federations also joined the protests, demanding the government withdraw a 19 percent sales tax that will dramatically increase the basic cost of living.
In Bogotá, police fired tear gas at marchers as they neared wealthier neighborhoods. The “Pencil March” demonstrations across Colombia are just the latest of dozens of marches in recent months demanding the government boost funding for education.
Demonstrations were also held in the cities Medellín, Cali, Barranquilla and Popayán.