The Palace of Justice in the Colombian city of Tuluá was set on fire this Tuesday, after a new day of protests in the area that ended in riots and violence.
The images of the burning building were disseminated on social networks by the authorities, who condemned what happened in this city in the department of Valle del Cauca, 94 kilometers north of Cali.
“Attacks like those of tonight in Tuluá are no longer vandalism and become terrorist acts. Peaceful protest is legitimate, violence is a crime,” said Colombian Justice Minister Wilson Ruiz on Twitter.
I reject and condemn these acts of terrorism that seek to sow chaos and fear. Attacks like those of tonight in Tuluá stop being vandalism and turn into terrorist acts. Peaceful protest is legitimate, violence is a crime. pic.twitter.com/bMO59OULWQ
— Wilson Ruiz Orejuela (@WilsonRuizO) May 26, 2021
Defense Minister Diego Molano Aponte, for his part, considered that “the vandals want to obstruct justice with burns like the one tonight at the Palace of Justice in Tuluá.”
“Infamous that they celebrate it. Those responsible are going to know the weight of the Law,” he wrote on Twitter.
The Colombian media reported that various people were making it difficult for firefighters and authorities to pass to the area, describing the lack of control in the area and the fear of the residents.
It happened in an URI in Popayán, also in the courthouse in La Plata. Now it happens in Tuluá. The vandals want to obstruct justice with burns like the one tonight at the Palace of Justice in Tuluá. Infamous to celebrate. Those responsible will know the weight of the Law. pic.twitter.com/eP8vq5qTnU
– Diego Molano Aponte (@Diego_Molano) May 26, 2021
The incident occurs within the framework of the protests that began on April 28 in the country, and that until May 26 they leave 43 dead.
The demonstrations began against a tax reform proposal but continued after the government of Iván Duque decided to withdraw it.
Cali and the Valle del Cauca region and neighboring Cauca, heavily affected by violence by armed groups and poverty and unemployment, have been the epicenter of much of this social unrest that was evidenced in the demonstrations.
There were also the largest outbreaks of violence, vandalism and reports of police brutality.