When the difficult situation in San Vicente del Caguan was coming to an end, an attack broke out in Antioquia. mining strike the first of March. The total closure of the Troncal de Occidente is also causing havoc in the transport sector.

Due to the roadblocks in Bajo Cauca, Antioquia, the Colombian Federation of Cargo Transporters (Colfecar) assures that costs are increasing by 30 percent, since drivers have to pay between 800,000 and 2 million pesos more on each tripdepending on the type of vehicle and load.

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In addition, coffee and citrus exports are being affected; the import of solid bulk; the supply of food, fruits and vegetables for Córdoba and Sucre; the transport of milk from the north of Antioquia to the north coast of the country and all parcel and courier operations.

«Regardless of how valid or invalid the reasons are, the Government should not continue negotiating with any sector while the roads remain closed,» asks Nidia Hernández, president of Colfecar.

At least 12 companies in Antioquia and Córdoba have seen their operations partially or totally affected

Meanwhile, Naturgas states that more than 15,000 homes in Antioquia have not been able to supply natural gas because the blockades have not allowed the transit of tractor-trailers to the input distribution stations.

While the Colombian Mining Association (ACM) denounces that at least 12 companies in Antioquia and Córdoba have seen their operations partially or totally affected, with restrictions on moving supplies and personnel. As a consequence of this situation, face a great risk of shortages.

One of them is Mineros, which due to the mining strike was forced to suspend all its operations in the area. It indicated that it will restart its operations when it can guarantee the care and safety of all its employees and contractors.

(Also read: Corruption, key to the entry of machinery into illegal mining areas)

«The blockade of land and river routes, to and from the north coast, affects the social fabric, mobility, livelihood and access to health and to the education of the communities, not only of Córdoba and Antioquia but of the whole country», says the ACM.

For this reason, it calls on the Government to coordinate the sending of humanitarian aid to affected areas and that order be restored as soon as possible and that the rights of all Colombians be guaranteed.

According to Colfecar, between January and March of this year 156 blockades have materialized, which have led to different roads in the country being closed for more than 3,100 hours. The departments most affected by blockades have been La Guajira (24), Santander (19), Córdoba (14), Bolívar (14) and Antioquia (11).