Latin America

Indigenous Protesters Topple Conquistador Statue in Southwestern Colombia

MOSCOW (Sputnik) – The civil unrest across the Latin American country was provoked by a video of two police officers restraining and repeatedly shocking 46-year-old lawyer Javier Humberto Ordonez for his alleged disrespect for the COVID-19 related social distancing rules, resulting in him dying at the hospital.

A group of indigenous people has toppled the statues of Spanish conquistador Sebastian de Belalcazar during recent protests in southwestern Columbia, the RCN radio station reported.

A march of the Misak people against violence took place on Wednesday in the city of Popayan, the department of Cauca. Upon reaching the statue, a group of marchers brought it down with ropes. According to the broadcaster, the police units present did not interfere with what was going on.

​Mayor Juan Carlos Lopez Castrillon condemned the act and promised the statue would be restored.

Meanwhile, judicial authorities have already launched an investigation to identify and prosecute the perpetrators.

Sebastian de Belalcazar was a Spanish conquistador notable for his conquests of Ecuador, Colombia and Nicaragua, as well as the founding of Popayan.

The incident mirrors a wave of the toppling of Confederate statues that rolled across the southern US states in the wake of the death of George Floyd in police custody.

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