The social explosion does not stop in Colombia. The force of the protest has wrecked another of the star projects of the right-wing government: the reform of the health system. The challenges on the street are political and cultural. A group of women undressed in the Bogotá National Park to reject acts of sexual violence perpetrated by police officers that have been reported since the demonstrations began more than two weeks ago.
” I am your lover” , “I am your daughter”, “You have made love to me”, “I have made love to you” and “My uterus was your first home”, read some of the posters, in an ironic tone. Hundreds of people applauded the performance that was also repeated in other urban centers where the conflict is burning, such as Cali, Palmira and Popayán.
To date, 27 complaints of sexual violence allegedly committed by representatives of the Public Force have been filed . Some of those images with the acts of abuse circulate on social networks. In one of them, an agent is seen telling a colleague to allow a group of women to cross a blocked street. “Let her pass and do whatever you want! ” He yells, not blushing.
Lina Porras, a researcher at the NGO Temblores police violence observatory, told the Bogota newspaper El Espectador that this expression, “do whatever you want,” is nothing more than an act of sexual violence. “It shows that women’s bodies are understood as territory to inscribe power, to exercise authority, and are understood as objects that can be possessed, violated .”
A 17-year-old girl committed suicide days ago after being dragged away and, according to her own testimony, abused by police officers. In a video she has been seen yelling at a uniformed man ” let me go, you’re undressing me, you idiot .”
Before taking her own life at home, she told her grandmother that she had been groped. The death of the teenager did nothing more than pour gasoline on the fire of the protest, especially in Popayán. Although the police initially denied the abuses, they suspended four of their members implicated in the case.
The Inter-American Commission on Human Rights (IACHR) strongly condemned the acts of sexual and psychological violence against adolescent women known in recent days.