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President orders patrols in Bogota

BOGOTA — President Juan Manuel Santos ordered troops onto the Colombian capital’s streets Friday after rioting in which at least two people died, and small farmers said they were lifting road blockades elsewhere after 11 days of protests.

Bogota was peaceful on Friday, with no disturbances reported as Santos ordered troops to reinforce police on the streets. No major military mobilization was noted.

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The violence broke out Thursday afternoon after some 30,000 people, many of them university students, marched in support of the farmers, who have been blocking highways and staging protests over a variety of issues.

Santos opened talks with the farmers Tuesday and has promised to address their grievances, including erasing import tariffs on fertilizer. The farmers say cheap imports of potatoes, onions, and milk are impoverishing them.

On Friday, Santos announced that he had asked government negotiators to return from talks with the farmers in Boyaca state, though he did not say why.

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