Seven people have died and four were left injured after the driver of a pick-up truck lost control of his vehicle after being attacked by protesting miners, authorities in northern Colombia claimed Monday.
According to local media, the protesters attempted to stop the truck and set fire to it in the municipality of Caceres, Antioquia. in trying to continue on his way in spite of the protests, the driver lost control and crashed into several people outside a shop.
Talking with Caracol Radio, the mayor said that the truck was stopped by around 200 protesters throwing stones. He added that the protesters had tried to set light to a public bus on Saturday and had broken several windows in the area.
The driver, who survived the crash, was taken to the police station for questioning and because an infuriated mob wanted to lynch him, said police lieutenant Harold Bastidas.
It is unclear whether or not the driver was alone in the vehicle and whether or not the three miners killed in the accident were taking part in the protest.
The executive director of Conalminercol (National Confederation of Colombian Miners), Luz Stella Ramírez, confirmed that it was miners protesting, but maintained that it was a peaceful protest. She also questioned why the authorities didn’t completely shut down the roads close to the protest.
The miners have been protesting in the region for the last 26 days about a decree that authorizes the destruction of machinery in sites where unlicensed miners work. On Tuesday they will meet with the national government to discuss an end to the strike.
Apart from the three miners, a public accountant and three businessmen died in the accident.
- Siete muertos en accidente de tránsito en Antioquia (El Espectador)
- Accidente de vehículo que huía a manifestantes dejo 7 muertos en Antioquia (Radio Santa Fe)
- Buscan responsables de accidente y violencia en Cáceres (El Colombiano)
- Tragedia en Cáceres fue por esquivar un bloqueo: Policía (RCN Radio)
- Siete personas murieron arrolladas en manifetación en Colombia (Hoy en Noticias)
- Siete muertos deja accidente de vehículo que iba a ser quemado por manifestantes (Caracol Radio)
- Gobierno busca frenar paro minero con propuesta a Conalminercol (El Universal)