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  • A supporter of the presidential candidate of Colombia, Gustavo Petro, during a campaign rally in Bogota, Colombia May 15, 2018.

    A supporter of the presidential candidate of Colombia, Gustavo Petro, during a campaign rally in Bogota, Colombia May 15, 2018. | Photo: Reuters

Published 16 May 2018

Masked men broke into Petro's campaign headquarters in Valledupar, injured the watchman and threatened Piedad Ramirez, campaign director in the region.

At least four masked people attacked the campaign headquarters of Colombian presidential candidate Gustavo Petro in Valledupar on Tuesday night, damaging the building, beating up the security guard taking care of the place and threatening the regional campaign's director.

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Around 2 a.m. local time, the masked people tried to forcibly enter the building by beating the watchman in the face and cutting his right arms with a knife and asking him to hand over the keys.

The attackers asked the guard multiple times about the whereabouts of Piedad Ramirez, Petro's campaign manager in the Cesar department, and asked him to leave the place, according to Ramirez herself.

“I can't tell if they were armed. They broke the windows in a very technical manner. The porter took a look and was asked about my whereabouts. They were telling him I was a communist and a guerrillera and that they were going to kill me. He was told that if he was part of the campaign he was going to get killed,” said Ramirez.

“The campaign headquarters of @petrogustavo in Valledupar were attacked. They broke the glasses and injured the celar with a knife. We hope the authorities investigate and the news outlets to take their cameras.”

“This is a very serious attack not against me, but against the campaign in general. We will file a lawsuit at the Attorney's Office because it's very serious that managers and coordinators of Petro's campaign in the departments are being attacked,”

Presidential candidates in Colombia wrapped up their campaigns on Sunday, just a few days ahead the first round of elections, to be held next May 27. If none of the candidates get more than 50 percent of the votes, a second round will be held on June 17.

Ivan Duque, candidate for the Democratic Center party and protegee of former president Alvaro Uribe, is currently leading the polls and has promised a country with a “christian and solid economy, of harmony between workers and employes.”

The center-left candidate Gustavo Petro is second place in the polls, behind Duque by 10 points, and has a good chance to get to the second round.

“When the people gather freely and massively, they form a people of collective forces ready to change history. The important one will be the people and not the candidate,” said Petro.


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