QCOSTARICA – As begin today, Monday, October 12, day 13 of the national protest, roadblocks continue but not at the scale of the past week given the work of the Fuerza Publica (National Police) in reopening roadways.
On Sunday, only four points in the country continued with blockades, following an early Sunday intervention by police to remove five roadblocks in San Carlos, Alajuela.
Daniel Calderón, director of the Public Force, explained that they intervened the bridge over the San Carlos River, on Route 35, which connects Florencia, Muelle and Los Chiles.
“There was a fairly strong blockade there, we found a lot of material (on the road) and there was an attack against the police during the liberation of that route,” said Calderón.
According to the police, the protesters in that blockade had glass bottles, homemade explosives and boards with nails to throw at the riot police.
“They have not been easy interventions because the level of violence they have used against the police and the objects they use are things that put life at risk (…) The risk for the officers is very high,” added the police chief.
According to the details of the Ministry of Public Security (MSP), the points that were intervened were located on the bridge over the San Carlos River, Aguas Zarcas, Altamira, Muelles, Chilamate and Horquetas in Sarapiquí.
Molotov cocktails were also located in Aguas Zarcas and it was also found that those blocking the passage at this point spilled oil on the bridge road.
Meanwhile, in Altamira Molotov cocktails, miguelitos (hoses with nails), a shield made with a tin and other objects were found.
According to information from the MSP, transporters told the police that they were threatened to use their vehicles and to block the bridge.
The canton of San Carlos has been one of the most affected, since September 30, by the road closures promoted by the Movimiento Rescate Nacional (National Rescue Movement), an organization led by the former presidential candidate, José Miguel Corrales and the former deputy, Célimo Guido.
Corrales last week admitted having lost control of the protests and that they have been infiltrated by criminal groups – drug traffickers – who are behind the violence. This was confirmed by the Minister of Security, Micheal Soto.
At 2:30 pm Sunday, only 4 points of the country were reported as having active blockades, according to Casa Presidencial:
- Paso Real, in Puntarenas
- Puesto 1, Buenos Aires, in Puntarenas
- Loma Verde, Pérez Zeledón
- Paso Canoas, Puntarenas
What to expect today Monday?
During a press conference late Sunday afternoon, the leader of the National Rescue movement, Célimo Guido, assured that they had already planned that this Sunday the groups that maintain the blockades would “rest”, to take part in the national march called for this Monday in downtown San José.
Guido assured yesterday that “the first half” of the protest movement was ending and that the second phase would begin on Monday.
The march is called for 9 am and would affect the transit from La Merced park to the Casa Presidencial in Zapote, where the leaders of the movement expect to be received by President Carlos Alvarado.
In that same speech, the representatives of said movement assured that they requested the intersection of Pope Francis and the Secretary-General of the Organization of American States (OAS), Luis Almagro, so that the Government “open a dialogue table with all civil society.”
Sunday night, on national television, Alvarado and the president of the Legislative Assembly, Eduardo Cruikshank, announced the creation of a multi-sectoral dialogue table in order to seek agreements to address the fiscal situation and the economic crisis facing the country.
This four-week process will begin next Saturday (Ocotber 17) with the participation of 25 representatives of civil society and under the moderation of the State of the Nation Program.