The national strike of 21 November 2019 for many people was a symbol of democracy and the hope of being able to change the status quo in which Colombian society live. For this reason, on November 21, 2019, 253,000 Colombian citizens, according to registered government figures, took to the streets to express their disagreement with the Colombian reality and to demand respect for human rights.
However, that hope was shattered amid riots, abuses and violence experienced by the population on the day itself; the Ministry of Defense reported “122 civilians injured and three dead”. However, these violent events were not just evident that day, but became the norm in the way that the Armed Forces reacted to protestors with violence during the national strike. The Committee in Solidarity with Political Prisoners (CSPP), an organization supported by PBI, represents the family of Dilan Cruz, a young man shot dead by a police officer on November 23. The case has been sent to the military justice courts, a decision that led Human Rights Watch to recently request that the Colombian Supreme Court take into account that, according to international law, human rights and international standards, Dilan Cruz’s case should be referred to the ordinary justice system.