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  • Miners in Segovia continue a strike against the government of President Juan Manuel Santos.

    Miners in Segovia continue a strike against the government of President Juan Manuel Santos. | Photo: Twitter / @LHoyosteleSUR

Published 25 August 2017

The striking miners claimed the explosions targeted their members.

Miners on strike in the Segovia municipality of Colombia's Antioquia department have denounced two explosions that occured late Thursday and early Friday, as protests against government measures banning artisanal mining continue after more than a month.

Colombian Miners Face Repression, Abuse During Protests

The first explosion took place at the Abel Rivera Villa de Segovia Sports Center while mining leaders were in a meeting. The second explosion targeted a supermarket in the northeast region of Antioquia.

The Mining Roundtable of Remedios and Segovia alleged it was an attack against the community and leaders of the strike.

"We were the subjects of attacks with firecrackers of which, fortunately, there were no victims or people injured," the organization said in a statement.

Segovia Mayor Gustavo Tobon has since denounced the explosions.

Colombian officials said they are investigating the incidents and are seeking the whereabouts of those responsible.

The indefinite strike began on July 21 in Antioquia, where miners in Segovia and Remedios have rejected government policies that favor large foreign companies instead of local artisanal and ancestral mining.

Over 10,000 Colombian miners began protesting against the expansion plans of multinational mining companies. 

The protesters, predominately Indigenous and Black campesinos, are demanding that the Senate withdraw Bill 190, which they say would affect the development of traditional miners of the region.

Clashes between police and miners have resulted in three people dead and several injured, as well as cases of alleged repression by Colombian anti-riot police, known as ESMAD.

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