Colombian protests intensify over tax plan

Unions and other groups kicked off marches on Wednesday to demand the government of President Ivan Duque withdraw the proposal, which originally levelled sales tax on public services and some food.

Isolated vandalism, clashes between police and protesters and road blockades occurred in several cities on Saturday, and riot police were deployed in the capital.

Saturday's protests took place despite an announcement by Duque late on Friday (April 30) that the reform will now not include sales tax on food or utilities or an expansion of income tax.

Cities at high risk for violence will continue to get military assistance, with accompanying human rights guarantees, Duque said in a Saturday evening video statement.