Fajarda also said he knew “very well” which zones of Medellin needed special attention and likened the structural problem of violence to a tree.
“At the lowest level [we] have to work with young people, because they enter this world and climb the positions. We have to call out to the community and work with [them], the women’s groups, to give psychological attention, make our presence with the state programs known and give opportunities to young people.”
The governor’s comments came after reports of escalating violence in parts of Medellin’s inner city. On Friday, a public transport chief was killed by criminals in the Comuna 13 district, after allegedly refusing to pay “tax” to a local neighborhood gang. Meanwhile, in the Comuna 8 district, a person launched a grenade against a public transport bus, wounding five including three children.
Locals in Comuna 13 have in the last few days complained about escalating violence, partly attributed to infighting in the crime syndicate Oficina de Envigado and new advances by neo-paramilitary group Los Urabeños.
On Thursday, locals told Colombia Reports hundreds of children were unable to go to school due to heavy fighting and threats against residents in the area.
In 2011, 11,401 civilians were forcefully displaced from their homes due to the ongoing violence between armed gangs in the city.