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State Violence in a Megastore-Dispatches from a Colombia on Strike-Accompaniment Report

Part Three-6.1.2021

A cluster of resistance points on Cali's east side has in its midst a megastore of the Éxito chain, a site now infamous for what people from the area say has happened there. According to their accounts, the oversize building has been a staging area for police, including elite special units carrying weapons of war, riot control tanks, and snipers posted on the roof. Additionally, the facility allegedly has functioned as an unregistered detention center, with captives brought in by vehicles without license plates, trucks, and even ambulances, and later taken away to unknown destinations. Reportedly one person known to have been detained there was found beaten, dumped on the side of a road, and the whereabouts of others remain unknown.

After vociferous denunciations generated enough public pressure, portions of the Éxito were made available for public inspection. People reported the existence of what they believed to be bloodstains, as well as indications of heavy-duty cleaning. Other parts of the building remained sealed off, as, so far, does the full truth of what happened inside the Éxito.


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