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Men bury themselves to avoid eviction

posted by Victoria Rossi

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Squatters protest

Ten men buried themselves up to their chests in dirt and rocks Tuesday to protest their eviction from an urban squatters’ settlement in the north of Colombia, local media reported.

Some 300 people arrived on the privately-owned plot of land over the course of the last 10 days, said the mayor of Aguachica, the small northern town where the settlers camped.

Aguachica faces a housing shortage, the mayor said, and the 90 families protesting their court-ordered removal are all otherwise homeless.

Aguachica’s municipal government recently announced plans to build 2,000 new low-income houses, part of President Juan Manuel Santos’ promise to provide free housing for the country’s poorest residents.

“Everyone wants to enter the program and they think that by invading private land they can guarantee housing for themselves,” the mayor added.

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