From April to June 2021, our editor visited Colombia and experienced the extraordinary beauty, abundant culture and rich history beyond the drug legacy often associated with it. During that time, protests engulfed the country on many fronts. Our local photographer, Jhonatan Rodriguez, captured much of the action from the center of protests in Medellin in June. Here is his take. (Check out Part 1 here.)
Dancer protesting at Parque de las Luces in Medellin:
Doctors from the Leon XIII Hospital supporting the protests:
Frontline protesters blocking the road in Medellin:
Frontline protesters blocking the road. The sign reads: “For all the forgotten towns and for the victims of the armed conflict in my Bajo Cauca, Taraza is here!!”
Frontline protesters making noise on a Medellin street to make themselves felt and heard:
The government wasn’t about to take the protests lying down, though, with security forces deploying tear gas.
Frontline protester escaping tear gas from Colombian security forces:
Frontline protester running to get hospital assistance:
One focal point of anger for the protesters was the EXITO supermarket chain, which has been accused of working with Colombian national police in the disappearance and torture of protesters in one of its stores.
A group of people wanted to set the EXITO store on fire, writing “Accomplices to the 1312 Killers” on the door:
Protest sigh reads: “He died from a stray bullet. Did a cop do it?”
Protest sign reads: “In Colombia, you don’t live, you survive”:
Indigenous communities in the Medellin protests: