Thousands march in Colombia to protest government reforms

Thousands of Colombians marched in major cities to oppose President Gustavo Petro’s political, economic, and social reforms, as well as to demand action on deteriorating security. Petro, a leftist elected in 2022, vowed to tackle poverty, inequality, and end Colombia’s long-standing conflict. However, his proposed reforms on health, pensions, labor, and education faced strong opposition in congress and from the public. Protesters in Bogota criticized Petro’s presidency with chants and signs, labeling his reforms as disastrous. Demonstrations, including those in Medellin and Cali, remained peaceful, with an estimated 52,000 participants nationwide. Petro defended his reforms, arguing they would benefit the poorest citizens, but faced criticism from those who accused his government of corruption and failing to deliver promised change. Despite ongoing debates in Congress, Petro lacks a legislative majority after his coalition dissolved in April.

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